James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad, greeting.
The world is full of servants of one kind and another.
1. Many are servants through the force of their worldly position.
2. Through the weakness of their intellectual and moral natures.
3. Through the dominant force of an evil passion.
4. Through their effort to pursue a Christly method of life.By striving to bring our daily life into conformity with the Saviour's, by endeavouring to become pure in our nature, spiritual in our ideas, reverent in our dispositions, and unselfish in our activities, we enter upon the highest service of which a human soul is capable.
I. IT IS SERVICE DEDICATED TO THE SUPREME BEING OF THE UNIVERSE: "James, a servant of God."
1. It is a service dedicated to God.
2. It is a service dedicated to the only Saviour of mankind: "And of the Lord Jesus Christ."
3. This service requires the divinest attitudes and truest activities of our moral nature. It must be —
(1) Sincere in its motives.
(2) Pure in its effort.
(3) Willing in its obedience.
(4) Eternal in its duration. The moral relationships of the soul are deeper and more enduring than any other.
4. This service confers the highest dignity upon the moral nature of man.
5. This service presses itself upon our moral nature with the most emphatic claims.
(1) That God is our Creator.
(2) That Christ is our Saviour.
II. IT IS A SERVICE DIRECTED TO TSHE MORAL CONSOLATION AND INSTRUCTION OF THE SORROWFUL.
1. James recognises the sorrowful condition and painful circumstances of those to whom he wrote.
2. The service of James was rendered effective by the ministry of the pen,
III. IT IS A SERVICE INTENSE IN ITS CONVICTION AND PERSONAL IN ITS REALISATION: "James."
IV. IT IS A SERVICE MOST JUBILANT IN ITS INSPIRATION: "Greeting."
1. It is jubilant because united to the highest source of joy and hope.
2. Because it has to console the world's sorrow.
3. Are we all engaged in this service?
(Joseph S. Exell, M. A.)
Parallel VersesKJV: James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad, greeting.