Bible Study January 10

Conference Number: (563) 999-2090 Access Code: 793633

Christian Maturity

James 1:1-12

Warren Wiersbe said, “After more than 60 years of ministry, I am convinced that spiritual immaturity is the number one problem in our churches. God is looking for mature men and women to carry on His work, and sometimes all He can find are little children who cannot even get along with each other.”

Question: What is your immediate reaction to these thoughts on spiritual immaturity? Do you agree or disagree? Why? How would you define Christian maturity?

More to consider; churches take a variety of approaches to grow spiritual maturity in believers. Some depend on weekly church services and Sunday school classes to provide the meatiest teaching. Others leave the deeper teachings to small groups. Consider your own experience in the church. Where have you found the greatest personal spiritual growth? What does this tell you about today’s church--- its strengths and weaknesses? What is a good measure of how well a church is growing the maturity of its believers?

2. Choose one verse of phrase from James chapter 1:1-12 that stands out to you. This could be something you are intrigued by, something that makes you uncomfortable, something that puzzles you, something that resonates with you, or just something you want to examine further. Write it down and be prepared to share on the call.

Throughout the Bible are people who turned defeat into victory. Instead of being victims, they became victors. James tells us that we can have this same experience today.

3. Circle the imperatives in James 1:1-12. How do these statements support the idea that Christ-followers can turn defeat into victory? Can you think of examples from Scripture of people who turned defeat into victory? What were the primary reasons they were able to turn that defeat around? Please share on the call.

More to consider: read John 16:33 and Acts 14:21 – 25. What do you think these verses tell us about the inevitability of trials and how we’re to respond to them? Please share on the call.

 

Outlook determines outcome, and attitude determines action. God tells us to expect trials. It is not “if you fall into various testings” but “when you fall into various testings.” The believer who expects his Christian life to be easy is in for a shock….

Because we’re God’s scattered people and not God’s sheltered people, we must experience trials. We cannot always expect everything to go our way. Some trials come simply because we are humans--- sickness, accidents, disappointments, even seeming tragedies. Other trials come because we are Christians.

 

4. What words or phrases in James 1:1-12 support this idea that the Christian life is not easy? Underline these. Why does being God’s “scattered people” mean that we must experience trials? What sort of “scatteredness” do you think was being experienced by the people to whom James was writing? Which kinds of trials are more difficult to respond to--- those that arise because we’re humans or those that arise because we are Christians? Explain on the call.