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About-Him.Com Devotional 12-24-2011
Life is But a Vapor
Text: James 4:11 ¶ Speak not evil one of another, brethren. He that speaketh evil of his brother, and judgeth his brother, speaketh evil of the law, and judgeth the law: but if thou judge the law, thou art not a doer of the law, but a judge.
12 There is one lawgiver, who is able to save and to destroy: who art thou that judgest another?
Scholars who are a lot smarter than me are befuddled about the application of these verses. One thing is certain, we shouldn’t be judging and condemning our brothers and sisters. We can only see their outward appearance. Their actions may confound us, but we seldom have the whole story. Also our actions may be confounding to the one who confounds us, but that‘s different, isn‘t it? God is the righteous lawgiver and He and He alone is the righteous judge. We all will answer to Him in judgment and there won’t be anything that is hidden from Him (Lu. 12:3). If we have judged others harshly, we will be judged by the same standard.
Matthew 7:2 For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.
That sounds pretty severe, doesn’t it? We have nothing to fear when we are covered by the blood of Jesus. He bore the sin of us all (Isa. 53:6). When we came to Him, we obtained mercy, and He expects us to show mercy to others.
Text: James 4:James 2:13 For he shall have judgment without mercy, that hath shewed no mercy; and mercy rejoiceth against judgment.
Zechariah 7:9 Thus speaketh the LORD of hosts, saying, Execute true judgment, and shew mercy and compassions every man to his brother:
Psalms 89:14 Justice and judgment [are] the habitation of thy throne: mercy and truth shall go before thy face.
Text: James 4:13 Go to now, ye that say, To day or to morrow we will go into such a city, and continue there a year, and buy and sell, and get gain:
Many of the folks to whom James was writing were traveling merchants. It appears that they weren’t bothering to include the Lord in their future planning.
Proverbs 3:6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.
Text: James 4:14 Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away
In Luke 12:15-21, Jesus tells us the story of a rich farmer who had been abundantly blessed with a bumper crop, which his barns were unable to contain. Without thanking God for his blessing, he came up with a simple solution. He would tear down his barns and built greater. He then said to himself, “Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry.”
But God said to Him:
Luke 12:20 But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided?
And Jesus reminds us:
Luke 12:21 So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.
Yes, life is like a vapor. Here today and gone tomorrow. We make our plans, but they don’t always work out. Life has a way of changing things. Death and sickness come without warning. Stock and housing markets crash and economies fail. Yesterday’s career becomes obsolete and unemployment is an ever present reality. Today’s millionaires often are tomorrows paupers. We all like to obtain earthly comforts, but we don’t want to forget the Lord in the process. We only have one constant in life and that is Jesus. He is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow (He. 13:8). He has promised to go with us even until the end of the world (Mt. 28:20).
Matthew 6:19 Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal:
20 But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal:
Job 14:1 ¶ Man [that is] born of a woman [is] of few days, and full of trouble.
1Peter 1:24 ¶ For all flesh [is] as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withereth, and the flower thereof falleth away:
1 John 2:17 And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.
Text: James 4:15 For that ye ought to say, If the Lord will, we shall live, and do this, or that.
16 But now ye rejoice in your boastings: all such rejoicing is evil.
17 Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin.
I believe that the very heart of God is grieved when we ignore Him as we lay out plans for our lives. He is our Father and He desires to give us His best (Mt. 7:11; Lu. 11:13). He clothes the lilies and feeds the birds, who don’t toil or spin. His word tells us to simply trust Him and not be anxious about tomorrow (Mt. 6:28; Lu. 12:27). He’ll take care of it. The greatest gift of all was when He moved upon the womb of a young virgin and caused her to bring forth the Savior of the world.
We may have all the riches of the world, but without Jesus we have nothing. With Jesus, we have everything!
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Don and Marie Spooner
About Him! Ministries
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Last modified: 05-04-2016
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