Sermon Bible Study Guides

in James

James 3:1–12 - 12th December, 2020

OBSERVATION
What does it say?

  1. Read James 3:1–12
  2. Who is James addressing?
  3. What does he tell them?
  4. What illustrations does he use?

INTERPRETATION
What does it mean?

  1. What reasons does James give for his warning?
    1. Why is this particularly pertinent for teachers (v.1)? 
    2. What do the illustrations help us see about the tongue?
      1. How does the tongue "guide" our whole body/life?
    3. What does it mean that the tongue is
      1. "a world of unrighteousness" (v.6a)?
      2. "staining the whole body" (v.6b)?
      3. "setting on fire the entire course of life" (v.6c)?
      4. "set on fire by hell" (v.6d)?
      5. "a restless evil, full of deadly poison" (v.8)?
      6. What is James trying to emphasize?
  2. Why can no human being tame the tongue?
    1. What hope is there for us then?
  3. What do v.9–10 teach us about 
    1. How we use our tongues
    2. What that reveals about us
  4. Consider v.11–12.
    1. What is the logic that these rhetorical questions and images teach us about words and the Christian life?
    2. How do these verses connect our behaviours with our identity?

APPLICATION
How should it change us?

  1. Confess ways from the last week that you have used your tongue/words in sinful ways which are unbecoming of a Christian. (Perhaps even go to that person and ask for forgiveness)
  2. How does the gospel empower you to tame the untamable tongue? What might that actually look like as you seek to battle using your tongue for evil?
  3. How do you treat poor Christians?
    1. Why is this a sign of if you are a true Christian or not?
in James

James 2:1–13 - 7th November, 2020

OBSERVATION
What does it say?

  1. Read James 2:1-13 
  2. Who is addressed and mentioned in the passage?
    1. How does James describe them?
  3. What questions does James ask?
  4. What commands are given?
    1. What reasons are given for the commands? What conclusions are drawn?

INTERPRETATION
What does it mean?

  1. What is wrong with "making distinctions" or "showing partiality" between rich and poor? 
  2. How has "God chosen those who are poor in the world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom" (v.5)? What does that mean?
  3. Who are the rich and the poor?
  4. What is the royal law? What is the law of liberty?
    1. What is required?
  5. How are judgment and mercy connected? Who will receive judgment without mercy according to this passage?
  6. What sections do you see in this passage? How would you summarize them? How are they connected?

APPLICATION
How should it change us?

  1. How and to whom are you tempted to show partiality? Why?
    1. Who do you show favoritism toward, and/or who do you look down upon or avoid? (Spend time confessing and repenting of this!)
  2. How does the gospel confront the sin of partiality? How does "holding our faith in our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory" (v.1) empower us to "show no partiality"? 

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