It is to be understood that the Apostle James is directing this letter to the children of God. He admonishes in verse five that if anyone lack wisdom in the enduring of trials or temptation as it is mentioned in verse 12, let him ask of God: for God gives wisdom to those who truly want it and does not rebuke those who ask, James 1:5. Nevertheless, wisdom is not bestowed on those who simply and idly ask, but on those who are willing to acquire it through the testing of their faith.
God never causes or tempts his children to sin, but rather tests and builds their faith. It was Satan who tempted Eve in the garden and it is Satan who tempts you and me. What God does builds us up in our faith; what Satan does tears us down and draws us away from the fellowship of God. James teaches us that, when temptation to sin is set in motion, there are four stages that can develop in your life: DESIRE, DECEPTION, DISOBEDIENCE AND DEATH. At any time during the first three the child of God can turn, repent, and resume fellowship with the Lord. Let us see how it works.
EXPLANATION OF THE TEXT: James 1:12 Blessed is the man that endureth… The word “endureth” means to bear bravely or to hold fast to one’s faith in Christ. A person is happy because he has not succumbed to temptation and its unfavorable consequences. One of the greatest consequences would be loss of fellowship with God or the awful guilt associated with not having endured. Matthew 26:75 “And Peter remembered the word of Jesus, which said unto him, Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice. And he went out, and wept bitterly.” The word “temptation” in verse 12 in not the same word which is found in verses 13-14. The word used here is a noun meaning testing or trials. “…for when he is tried, that is, found accepted, he shall receive the crown of life,…” According to Revelation 2:10, the crown of life shall be a reward for faithfulness “…which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.”
James 1:13, “Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God:…” The word “tempted” here is a verb which means to be moved to do a certain thing. Though God tries our faith and perseverance He will never tempt us to commit sin. “… for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man:” [with evil] When the Lord Jesus was tempted in the wilderness, His temptation did not come from the heavenly Father, but from Satan himself. Note: It was not that Jesus was able to overcome the temptation, but that He could not be tempted at all.
James 1:14, “But every man is tempted,…” Every person is moved to some act of sin “when he is drawn away” or as the word indicates, “bated” or when sin is dangled in front of him. Though everyone has the propensity to sin, not everyone has the propensity to the same sin. The devil will keep trying until he finds yours. Thus, THE DESIRE: James 1:14, “…when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.” We shall present the body of the message next time. In the meantime study the text carefully. E-mail, firstname.lastname@example.org