Covenant Baptist Church
James X - Making Plans? (James 4:13-17)
Sermon Guide for September 23, 2018
Locations & Times
  • Covenant Baptist Church
    5440 SW 37th St, Topeka, KS 66614, USA
    Sunday 10:45 AM
Is it pointless to make plans if there is no guarantee that they will ever come to pass?
Vs 13: Come now, you who say “today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, and spend a year there and engage in a business and make a profit.”
James is addressing our tendency to think about and plan our futures without regard for God as if our assumptions about the future were safe and accurate.
Vs 14a: Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow.
No matter how young or old you are, you have experienced more than one day that did not turn out like you had planned on it turning out.
Vs 14b: You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away.
James wants us to live in light of the fact that this life in this human body is very temporary and we are fa more limited than we most often think or act like we are.
Vs 15: Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we will live and also do this and or that.
Instead of planning for the future with presumptuous, self-sufficient attitudes James encourages us to adopt an unassuming, humble, dependence on God as we do so.
Vs 16 – But as it is, you boast in your arrogance; all such boasting is evil.
James says we boast (in either word or action) about this self-sufficiency as if it were the right and best way to live while, in actuality, this kind of boasting is evil.
Evil here should be understood as an action that leads us into darkness, isolation, unnecessary fruitless labor and hardship.
Vs 17 - Therefore to one who knows the right thing to do and does not do it, it him it is sin.
Because the truth is now clearly evident of how harmful and deviant living a presumptuous, self-directed life really is, we now have accountability to that truth.
G2 Step:
Adopt/take in these true narratives:
● This life and the circumstances I face in it are all very temporary.
o 2 Corinthians 4:17-18
o Psalm 144:4
● I have no real knowledge of or control over how the future plays out.
o Proverbs 27:1
o Proverbs 14:12
o Jeremiah10:24
● It is foolish and harmful to live like my assumptions and plans for the future are certain.
o Luke 12:15-23
o Proverbs 14:12
● It is good and right to plan for the future while entrusting it to God. As you do, remain fully aware things can and will change but God and His Perfectly Faithful Love, Limitless Power and His Relentless Willingness and Ability to accomplish what is truly good on your behalf will never change.
o Proverbs 3:5-6
o Matthew 6:19-34
o Proverbs 16:3
o Jeremiah 29:11
Pick a day this week, think about and identify…
● Something you are planning on next week
● Something you are planning on next month
● Something you are planning on next year
Ask yourself…
● How likely is it that this plan will happen just as I envisioned it?
● Is there anything about it that I already know conflicts with the Life God intends for me to have?
● If these plans don’t happen, how will it impact my relationship with others? With God?
● Am I willing to put these plans before God and let Him direct my path in regard to them?
● What do I need to do in order to do that?

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