Read James 1:13-18
“He chose to give us birth through the word of truth . . .”
When Jesus’ brother, James, wrote these words, he wrote from the core of his own existence. “James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ.” (v.1) I imagine calling himself his big brother’s servant didn’t just roll off the tongue. It took some pretty serious life-changing experiences to get him to the place where, upon writing a letter that would mark his own legacy, the only identifying word James would use to describe himself would be “servant.” Yes, James was God’s servant. He served his big brother, Jesus. This was how he chose to describe himself.
It’s important to note because it was out of the foundation of his true identity that James declared the truth about sin and it’s stealthy ways. It’s not from God. He only gives good gifts. He never changes. He will not tempt. In fact, a true servant of the Lord Jesus Christ knows that it’s his or her own messed up way of trying to live that drags him or her into anything that opposes God’s good and perfect way.
Sin. It doesn’t announce its presence or advertise its ways. I’ve never seen a bright yellow warning sign that reads “Sin ahead. Beware.” Rather, it sneaks stealthily, hooks us with an enticing “This seems better” and eventually drags us into a kind of living that has nothing to do with real life. Sin masquerades itself as the stuff of life we think we want or need. Like “venting” when someone does us wrong. Or shading the truth to protect our image. In fact, it starts with our own twisted solutions for the problem that can only be solved by the One who made us, the One who put eternity in our hearts so we could live real life.
So, flee. Don’t take the bait. Run like a zebra runs from a lion. Know who you are. Live out of the truth of who you serve. Filter each decision through the truth that the One True God who only gives good gifts wants you to live according to the word of truth. He gave you life. And through it, He shows you the way to live.