Evening, July 11
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Bible League: Living His Word
For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.

In our verse for today James puts forth a simile. On the one hand, there is the body and the spirit. On the other hand, there is faith and works. The two pairs are comparable to one another.

The spirit or soul of a human person is the quickening or vivifying principle of the body. It is the spirit that makes the body alive. The body is not completely and finally dead until the spirit leaves the body for good. Indeed, the body apart from the spirit is not even the body anymore, but a mere corpse. Spirit and body were designed by God to be connected to one another (Genesis 2:7). Death is the disruption of that connection.

One would think, given the biblical point of view, that faith should be comparable to the spirit and works should be comparable to the body. This is because faith is best regarded as the inward quickening principle of the outward visible acts of a person. Faith, to put it another way, determines the direction that our outward acts take.

James, however, reverses what we would expect. Instead of comparing spirit to faith and body to works, he compares spirit to works and body to faith. This is because, from his point of view, faith apart from works is not true faith at all, but a mere intellectual assent to a dogma. It is not, in other words, the quickening principle of good works that it should be. Such "faith" is just as dead as a body without the spirit.

James is not contradicting the Apostle Paul's teaching that Christians are justified by faith. All he is saying is that the true faith that justifies us will by nature yield up good works. If it never does, then something is wrong with it. It is dead. Paul's point is that mere obedience to a law can never justify us. James' point is that mere intellectual assent to a dogma can never justify us either (James 2:24).

In summary, James' point is that it is important that our works reflect the faith that we have in our hearts. If our works never show the quickening of true faith, then that faith is not true faith at all.

Bible in a Year
Old Testament Reading
Psalm 4, 5, 6


Psalm 4 -- Answer me when I call, God of my righteousness.

  NIV   NLT   ESV   NAS   GWT   KJV   ASV   ERV   DRB


Psalm 5 -- Give ear to my words, O Lord. Consider my meditation.

  NIV   NLT   ESV   NAS   GWT   KJV   ASV   ERV   DRB


Psalm 6 -- O Lord, don't rebuke me in your anger

  NIV   NLT   ESV   NAS   GWT   KJV   ASV   ERV   DRB


New Testament Reading
Acts 16:16-40


Acts 16 -- Timothy Joins Paul and Silas; Paul's Vision of a Macedonian; Lydia; Conversion of the Philippian Jailer

  NIV   NLT   ESV   NAS   GWT   KJV   ASV   ERV   DRB


Reading Plan Courtesy of Christian Classics Etherial Library.
Tyndale Life Application Daily Devotion
The man who had been freed from the demons begged to go with him. But Jesus sent him home, saying, “No, go back to your family, and tell them everything God has done for you.” So he went all through the town proclaiming the great things Jesus had done for him.
Insight
Often, Jesus asked those he healed to be quiet about the healing, but he urged this man to return to his family and tell them what God had done for him. Why? (1) Jesus knew the man would be an effective witness to those who knew his previous condition and could attest to the miraculous healing. (2) Jesus wanted to expand his ministry by introducing his message into this Gentile area. (3) Jesus knew that the Gentiles, since they were not expecting a Messiah, would not divert his ministry by trying to crown him king.
Challenge
When God touches your life, don't be afraid to share the wonderful events with your family and friends.
Morning and Evening by Spurgeon
Joel 1:3  Tell ye your children of it, and let your children tell their children, and their children another generation.

In this simple way, by God's grace, a living testimony for truth is always to be kept alive in the land--the beloved of the Lord are to hand down their witness for the gospel, and the covenant to their heirs, and these again to their next descendants. This is our first duty, we are to begin at the family hearth: he is a bad preacher who does not commence his ministry at home. The heathen are to be sought by all means, and the highways and hedges are to be searched, but home has a prior claim, and woe unto those who reverse the order of the Lord's arrangements. To teach our children is a personal duty; we cannot delegate it to Sunday school teachers, or other friendly aids; these can assist us, but cannot deliver us from the sacred obligation; proxies and sponsors are wicked devices in this case: mothers and fathers must, like Abraham, command their households in the fear of God, and talk with their offspring concerning the wondrous works of the Most High. Parental teaching is a natural duty--who so fit to look to the child's well-being as those who are the authors of his actual being? To neglect the instruction of our offspring is worse than brutish. Family religion is necessary for the nation, for the family itself, and for the church of God. By a thousand plots Popery is covertly advancing in our land, and one of the most effectual means for resisting its inroads is left almost neglected, namely, the instruction of children in the faith. Would that parents would awaken to a sense of the importance of this matter. It is a pleasant duty to talk of Jesus to our sons and daughters, and the more so because it has often proved to be an accepted work, for God has saved the children through the parents' prayers and admonitions. May every house into which this volume shall come honor the Lord and receive his smile.

Daily Light on the Daily Path
Psalm 107:9  For He has satisfied the thirsty soul, And the hungry soul He has filled with what is good.

1 Peter 2:3  if you have tasted the kindness of the Lord.

Psalm 63:1,2  A Psalm of David, when he was in the wilderness of Judah. O God, You are my God; I shall seek You earnestly; My soul thirsts for You, my flesh yearns for You, In a dry and weary land where there is no water. • Thus I have seen You in the sanctuary, To see Your power and Your glory.

Psalm 84:2  My soul longed and even yearned for the courts of the LORD; My heart and my flesh sing for joy to the living God.

Philippians 1:23  But I am hard-pressed from both directions, having the desire to depart and be with Christ, for that is very much better;

Psalm 17:15  As for me, I shall behold Your face in righteousness; I will be satisfied with Your likeness when I awake.

Revelation 7:16,17  "They will hunger no longer, nor thirst anymore; nor will the sun beat down on them, nor any heat; • for the Lamb in the center of the throne will be their shepherd, and will guide them to springs of the water of life; and God will wipe every tear from their eyes."

Psalm 36:8  They drink their fill of the abundance of Your house; And You give them to drink of the river of Your delights.

Jeremiah 31:14  "I will fill the soul of the priests with abundance, And My people will be satisfied with My goodness," declares the LORD.

New American Standard Bible Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, La Habra, Calif. All rights reserved. For Permission to Quote Information visit //www.lockman.org.

Morning July 11
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