|James 5 |
1 Come now, you rich men, weep and wail for the miseries that will surely come upon you.1
2 Your riches are corrupted, and your garments are moth eaten.
3 Your gold and silver are corroding, and the corrosion of them will be a witness against you and will eat your flesh as if it were fire. You have heaped up treasure together for the last days.
4 Behold, any wages of the laborers who have reaped in your fields, which you have fraudulently withheld from them, cry out against you; and the cries of those who have labored have entered into the ears of the Lord of hosts.
5 You have lived in pleasure on the earth, and been unrestrained; you have fattened your hearts, as in a day of slaughter.
6 [By ignoring their lack of life's necessities], you have condemned and killed the righteous, and he does not resist you.
7 Therefore brothers be patient until the coming of the Lord.2 Behold, the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, and waits patiently for it, until he receives the early and the latter rain.
8 You also be patient. Establish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord draws near.
9 Brothers, do not hold grudges against one another, so that you will not be condemned; behold, the judge stands before the door.
10 My brothers, consider the prophets who have spoken in the name of the Lord, as an example of suffering affliction and of patience.
12 But above all things, my brothers, do not swear,3 neither by heaven or by the earth, nor by any other oath; but let your "Yes" be yes; and your "No," no, to avoid being condemned.
13 Is there anyone among you who is afflicted? Then let him pray. Is anyone happy? Let him sing praises.
14 Is there anyone sick among you? Then let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord.
15 And the prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise him up; and if he has committed sins, they will be forgiven him.
16 Confess your faults to one another, and pray for one another, so that you may be spiritually healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.4 [Through dedicated obedience, the righteous man has been crucified and has received the fruit of the Spirit. From the Word of the Lord within: "If told what to pray for, they can be extremely effective; to pray as heard — righteous expectation. Pray only as you are told." If you believe what you have heard the Lord tell you to pray, then you will receive what you ask in prayer, as John carefully states: "And this is the confidence that we have in him, that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him." 1 John 5:14-15. Unless you have crucified your sinful nature, to receive his Spirit in sufficient measure to reveal His will, you have no idea what His will is. This is why the vast majority of prayers, made in the carnal minds of beginning believers, are never answered. When we can do His will, we hear what to pray from Him, and we know for sure such prayers are heard and will be granted.]
17 Elijah was a man subject to the same passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain; and it did not rain on the earth for three years and six months.
18 And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth brought forth her fruit.
19 Brothers, if any of you should fall into error from the truth, and someone effectively corrects him [away from his evil course];
20 Let him know, that he who corrects the sinner from the error of his way will save a soul from death, and will cover a multitude of sins.
1 This is a severe warning to rich people! Why? Not because it is a sin to be rich. Rather it is because if there is suffering in the world, and a rich person who has not liberally given from his excess to relieve that suffering, that person's judgment will be severe. The wrong is to have excess, over and above what you need to live, and be aware of people, wherever they are, in need of the necessities of life without contributing to their relief. Perhaps you have to look beyond the borders of you own country to find those people and/or charities with genuine needs. But there is need throughout the third world for life-sustaining contributions. (Note! People in need, does not include those who refuse to take available jobs and chose to beg instead, pretending they have needs.) When you close your ears and heart to the poor, you have closed your heart to God. When you give to the poor, you have given to God. What you do for the least of mankind, you have done for God. Mat 25:32-45
There is a generation, whose teeth are as swords, and their jaw teeth as knives, to devour the poor from off the earth, and the needy from among men. Prov 30:14
The righteous considers the cause of the poor; but the wicked decides not to recognize what condition they are in. Prov 29:7
He that oppresses the poor reproaches his Maker, but he who has mercy on the poor honors God.Prov 14:31
Whoever stops his ears at the cry of the poor, shall cry himself, but shall not be heard [in Hell]. Prov 21:13
He who has pity upon the poor lends to the LORD, and the Lord will repay what he has given. Prov 19:17
The righteous give, and spares not... He who has a bountiful eye will be blessed for he gives of his bread to the poor. Prov 21:26 and 22:9
And he who gives to the poor, will not lack. Provo 28:27
Give, and it will be given to you, said Christ. Luke 6:38
But this I say, He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly; and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. 2 Cor 9:6
And blessed is he who considers the poor, the Lord will deliver him in time of trouble. Psalm 41:1
2 If you think the Lord is still to come in the future, 2000 years after James wrote this, then you must think that James is either very stupid or deluded. But of course he is not. He told the brothers to be patient until the coming of the Lord 2000 years ago, because the Lord comes, appears, returns to the purified believers in all generations. James was not wrong, Paul was not insane, as neither was Jesus, and Peter, and John, — they all said, soon, the time is near, a little while, he stands at the door; because the Lord's return occurred to those who had purified themselves in their hope and faith of his appearance in them. See The Second Appearance of Jesus is Within the Hearts of Purified Believers for the details.
3 Above all things, do not swear. Swearing is not profanity. Swearing is to take an oath, or to swear "to tell the truth." Swearing is forbidden by James and by Jesus in Mat 5:34-37: But I say to you, Do not swear at all; neither by heaven, for it is God's throne; nor by the earth, for it is his footstool; or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the great King. Neither shall you swear by your head, because you cannot make one hair white or black. But let your 'yes' be 'yes,' and your 'no,' 'no;' for whatever is more than these comes from the evil one, [the spirit of Satan within you].
The reason Jesus further tells us not to swear by heaven, by earth, (or by the Bible), by God, or even the hairs on your head is because you don't control any of them, so to pretend to be able invoke them is a complete exaggeration, even a lie.
4 The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. An effectual prayer is one in which the Spirit of God supplies the words to pray; from the Word of the Lord within: "Pray only as you are told. If told what to pray for, they can be extremely effective; to pray as heard — righteous expectation." A righteous man has been freed from sin; he practices righteousness: Little children, let no man deceive you. He who practices righteousness is righteous, even as He is righteous. 1 John 3:7. From the Word of the Lord within: "there is a righteousness imputed at death;" the death of your selfish spirit on the inward cross of self-denial, when you receive the fruit of the Spirit, against which is no law, to then walk in love, obeying the continuous commands of Christ — that is true righteousness.
Would a righteous preacher tell you to send in your prayer requests? Would a righteous preacher pray for you when you ask him to pray? He definitely would not be soliciting prayer requests, (usually solicited along with your love offering); and unless he heard the Lord to tell him to pray for you, he would not dare pray from his own will. So, anyone soliciting prayers, you can be certain is a false prophet. So much for prayer circles; so much for prayer warriors; so much for healing ministries.
God does not hear sinners, John 9:31; God does not hear sinners complacent in their sins, who are not striving to repent and turn from their evil ways. But if a sinner goes to God in humility, and asks for his help to become free from evil, or even asks God to show him if there is anything standing between them, then God will certainly hear and answer. For he would have us all to be free from sin to enter his kingdom, and for that purpose Jesus stands ready to redeem us from all iniquity and purify us, to produce the fruit of the spirit, thus to bring glory to the father; for by your producing much fruit, my Father is honored and glorified, and you show that you are truly my disciples [true followers]. John 15:8. Heard from the Lord by a reader of this site, as loud as someone standing next to him, "I only hear a prayer of a righteous man and a prayer of a sinner who comes to repent." Such a man comes in humility with regret of his past sins, (but not dwelling on them), for as the Word of the Lord has said: "Once you have expressed sorrow over the past, it is redundant to bring it up again. Forget the feelings of having past failed. Through guilt you can become entangled again. Forgetting what lies behind, we press onward." Such a man comes to wait on God with the desire to be shown anything that stands between himself and God.
If you believe what you have heard the Lord tell you to pray, then you will receive what you ask in prayer, as John carefully states: "And this is the confidence that we have in him, that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him." 1 John 5:14-15. God only hears what you ask if you ask according to His will; and unless you have crucified your sinful nature, to receive his Spirit in sufficient measure to reveal His will, you have no idea what His will is. Since He only hears if we ask according to His will, this is why the vast majority of prayers, made in the carnal minds of beginning believers, are never answered.
A righteous man is told for what to pray; and when he prays, he knows for certain the prayer will be granted. Faith is hearing the word within tell you what to do and say, and then obeying. Faith is not making your own choice of what you want done from your carnal mind, and then praying for it to be done. Oh no! That kind of faith is a demonic faith, from the will of a mind that is the enemy of God; that kind of faith would produce chaos in the world. Your faith has to be in obedience to what God asks you to do or asks you to pray to be done. Jesus never did, or said, or formed an opinion, other than as he was instructed by the Father to do; and so must we die to self, so that we are directed in everything by God's spiritual promptings in thought, word, deed, and prayer.