“Blessed is a man who perseveres under trial; for once he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him. Let no one say when he is tempted, ‘I am being tempted by God’; for God cannot be tempted by evil, and He Himself does not tempt anyone. 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 when sin is accomplished, it brings forth death. Do not be deceived, my beloved brethren. 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. In the exercise of His will He brought us forth by the word of truth, so that we would be a kind of first fruits among His creatures.
“This you know, my beloved brethren. But everyone must be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger; for the anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God” ~ James 1:12-20.
Endurance achieves the righteousness of God. Faith to trust God and stand firm against that which tempts us away from the path He has for us increases righteousness to us. Temptation is not just the flesh being drawn to something less than the best for us. Temptation is there to call us away from following God on paths of righteousness.
God promises us the way of escape from temptation:
“No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it” ~ 1 Corinthians 10:13.
I see seven things in our James 1 passage that give us instruction on how to escape temptation and are important to our success in standing firm to endure the trials of life. In scripture, seven is the number of perfection – of completion. We complete our endurance and reach our destiny in achieving the righteousness of God by following this course we will cover over the next few days.
This got long, so it will be split into two or three posts. That said, I will see you back here tomorrow, when we will begin to look at the seven things that we can do to walk in the path of endurance that works the righteousness of God in our daily lives.