But each one is tempted when he is carried away and enticed by his own lust. Then when lust has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it has run its course, brings forth death. Do not be deceived, my beloved brothers and sisters. Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.
James 1 is one of my favorite passages in the New Testament. This section of James is a reminder that we have a tendency to drift from the perfect work of God in our lives. This reality should cause great concern as we consider the dangers of being deceived. Brother James however, shares a safety net that God has given to help avoid drifting and better understand the process that God uses for our sanctification.
The reality is that we (on our best days) are nothing but cesspools of evil lust. We constantly seek pleasure as tokens to feed our evil lust. And because our lust is out of we lust over everything. The half brother of Jesus reminds his readers that this ultimately brings death.
James draws a contrast with the preceding verses about temptation and the destruction that it brings. His point is that Satan does not give good gifts. Only God gives good gifts. Remember that James began by saying that God did not cause temptation to come to us. We take comfort in knowing that God is not the source of our temptation.
In contrast, God has provided the antidote to this dilemma. Through the perfect work of Christ we can avoid deception. Christ gives me the ability to see that every good thing and every perfect gift comes from the Father. The good things and gifts that comes from the Father fully satisfy because there is no deception. His gifts are good and well pleasing.
My prayer is that today through the power of Jesus I avoid deception by recognizing that Christ fully satisfies. God is most glorified through my satisfaction in Him.
Our Pastor writes most of the blog posts we publish, however, occasionally some of our other church leadership (some staff, some volunteer) who also contribute to the New Life blog.