Those who seek and focus on physical wealth and pleasures instead of the spiritual riches of the Word of God, will be perverted away from the Word of God and will compromise with God’s Word to gain worldly riches.
Physical riches have no lasting value since they will perish; therefore set your heart on the spiritual things that are permanent and that will matter for eternity.
James 5:1 Go to now, ye rich men, weep and howl for your miseries that shall come upon you. 5:2 Your riches are corrupted, and your garments are moth eaten. 5:3 Your gold and silver is cankered; and the rust of them shall be a witness against you, and shall eat your flesh as it were fire for ye have heaped treasure together for the last days.
To gain wealth by fraud or turning aside from a zealous keeping of the whole Word of God is a great sin. Very many leaders and elders in today’s Ekklesia are frauds who use the name of God to deceive and gain followers after themselves.
Can our worldly riches save us from the great correction of Almighty God? NO, therefore set your hearts on godly things!
Speaking of this society and also of the elders who extort from the brethren and rob widows and orphans
James 5:4 Behold the hire [wages] of the labourers who have reaped down your fields, which is of you kept back by fraud, cries: and the cries of them which have reaped are entered into the ears of the Lord of sabaoth.
The Lord of HOSTS [armies] hears the cries of the oppressed and he will avenge them.
5:5 Ye [the wicked] have lived in pleasure on the earth, and been wanton; ye have nourished your hearts, as in a day of slaughter [the fleecing of the flock]. 5:6 Ye have condemned and killed the just; and he [the just person] doth not resist you.”
The saints have been persecuted continually, counted as sheep for the slaughter and they have not resisted or fought with weapons of war, because they know that God’s kingdom is not of this world and not of this age. For Jesus Christ said, “My kingdom is not of this world. If it were then my servants would fight.”
The day is coming when Jesus Christ will return to gather up God’s saints to the Marriage of the Lamb before God the Father in Heaven (Rev 15, 19): And shortly after that, he will come down to the earth with those saints and they will fight all wickedness (Jude).
They will fight sin, evil and wickedness, and those who insist upon doing wickedness. And they will bring the earth into submission and subjection to the whole Word of God and establish the Kingdom of God.
That time will come; but for now we submit without resisting, even as Jesus Christ submitted without resisting; for it is not yet our time.
5:7 Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord.
Patiently wait for the end time events and the redemption of the faithful in God’s good time.
Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive the early and the latter rain. 5:8 Be ye also patient; establish your hearts: for the coming of the Lord draws near.
Do not bear grudges against those who abuse us, because animosity and hatred grows into a bitterness which will destroy us spiritually.
We are forgiven only as we forgive others. Our true enemy who is inspiring these things is not the people doing them but Satan. Remember the words of Christ:
James 5:9 Grudge not one against another, brethren, lest ye be condemned: behold, the judge stands before the door. 5:10 Take, my brethren, the prophets, who have spoken in the name of the Lord, for an example of suffering affliction, and of patience.
Suffer all things patiently just as the prophets and apostles did, and as Jesus Christ did. In this world seek to foresee trouble and to wisely avoid it whenever possible; without compromising with the Word of God.
Proverbs 27:12 A prudent man foreseeth the evil, and hideth himself;
Those who are faithful and endure all things to the end of their lives will have the reward of eternal life.
James 5:11 Behold, we count them happy which endure. Ye have heard of the patience of Job, and have seen the end of the Lord; that the Lord is very pitiful [full of mercy], and of tender mercy [forgiving the repentant].
Avoid the making of oaths and vows for they are a trap, because none of us can keep our own word by our own strength.
5:12 But above all things, my brethren, swear not, neither by heaven, neither by the earth, neither by any other oath. But let your yea be yea; and your nay, nay; lest ye fall into condemnation.
In our daily activities; if we are downcast we should pray about our troubles, and if we are happy we should rejoice in our God: meaning that we should be focused on our God the Giver of all good things.
5:13 Is any among you afflicted? Let him pray. Is any merry? Let him sing psalms.
5:14 Is any sick among you? Let him call for the [true godly elders only, because God does not hear the prayers of the wicked] elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord.
5:15 And the prayer of faith [Godly faith is believing in God and keeping what God says in his Word.] shall save the sick [spiritually sick], and the Eternal shall raise him up [In the resurrection to spirit]; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him.
What does it mean “The Eternal shall raise him up?”
This is about forgiveness of sincerely repented sins and the resurrection of the dead. The sins of the sincerely repentant will be forgiven and they shall be resurrected or raised up in the resurrection to spirit.
The prayer of faith shall save the spiritually sick. Does that mean the physically sick will be instantly healed?
No, it does not always mean instantaneous physical healing, although that certainly can and often does happen.
A person may be sick for a reason. God may be trying to teach some kind of lesson [see Job], and if we obey him and are anointed with oil in the name of the Lord, the prayer of faith, that is believing prayer coupled with the works of faith shall save the sick. That is, if we have committed sins and are sincerely repentant and resolve to sin no more, they shall be forgiven us and God will raise us up in the resurrection.
There is also the issue of FAITH; it is faith in God, demonstrated by obedience to the whole Word of God, which brings forgiveness of sins and spiritual healing.
It is our faith in God and sincere repentance accompanied by the works of faith which is to obey God, that brings spiritual healing; and NOT any faith in the anointer. Why then call for prayers at all? Because Christ said that whenever two or three agree on anything lawful it would be granted (Mat 18). Yet the healing is not always physical, for physical things are transitory.
5:16 Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be
healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.
Does that mean standing up in front of a congregation and confessing all your sins to everyone?
No, it does not. It means to confess your sins to God in sincere repentance! Healing comes from learning what our sins are and sincerely repenting of them!
Confessing also applies if you sinned against a particular person, you need to go to that person and say, “I am really sorry, I have done such and such, I was wrong, I sinned. Please forgive me.”
Only if your sin is a public sin, would it need a public apology.
This is about sincere repentance before God and when necessary reconciling with your brother. It is not about standing up and confessing in front of the whole world. It is about reconciling with your brother; about making what you have done wrong, right again; making it good, making it right; as per Christ’s instructions in Matthew 18.
Yes, Elijah was a man like ourselves and not a god, God heard his prayer because of his faithfulness and zeal for the whole Word of God. That was an example for us, that we will also be heard according to our faithfulness and zeal to keep the whole Word of God
5:17 Elias was a man subject to like passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months. 5:18 And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth brought forth her fruit.
When we see our brother caught up in sin; it is our moral duty to warn him (Ezekiel 33)
5:19 Brethren, if any of you do err from the truth, and one convert him; 5:20 Let him know, that he which converteth the sinner from the error of his way shall save a soul from death, and shall hide a multitude of [if we warn others and they repent, we have caused their sins to be covered] sins.
How can one convert another from his sin if there is no rebuke of sin, or instruction in righteousness provided?
If we see our brother stepping out in front of a truck; is it godly love to say nothing? or would God want us to shout a warning? Remember the commission of the watchman in Ezekiel 33. We have a COMMAND and a COMMISSION from God to warn our brothers; our own life depends on loving God and our neighbors enough to SHOUT A WARNING! Remember the Law of God:
Leviticus 19:17 Thou shalt not hate thy brother in thine heart: thou shalt in any wise rebuke thy neighbour, and not suffer sin upon him.
We should not condemn persons but we should definitely stand on God’s Word and we should warn the sinner, which is an act of godly love.
We are to teach the righteousness of God [which is the keeping of the whole Word of God] to all peoples beginning with the Ekklesia; and we are to rebuke all sin:
Isaiah 58:1 Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and shew my people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins.
Covering a multitude of whose sins? If we go to someone that is sinning, and they repent and they are converted and they STOP sinning, we have saved their life, and the sins that have been covered are the sins that the person has repented of.
If we want our own sins to be covered, we must sincerely repent of them, and STOP sinning.
The only way that sin can be covered, is if we sincerely repent and go forward, committed to sin no more! Then the sacrifice of Christ will be applied to us, blotting out our past sins and only then we shall be justified by Christ. The only way that the gift of grace or pardon will be given to us is if we sincerely repent and STOP sinning, if we stop doing the offending behavior.
If we stop breaking God’s Word, we can be forgiven. If we don’t stop, how can we be forgiven?
How can we possibly be forgiven if we are continually repeating the same sin, continually repeating the same criminal act of breaking the law of the Kingdom? Earning the same wages of death over and over again?
If we are continually repeating criminal acts, we will be judged a criminal and we must pay the penalty for our crimes.
It is only if we stop being a criminal, stop committing the criminal act, stop breaking the law of the Kingdom; only then can we be forgiven our sincerely repented past sins NOT future sins, only then will our sins be covered by the sacrifice of the Lamb of God!
Grace or forgiveness for PAST sins is NOT a license to continue in future sin!