February 14, 2021
Sermon Title: Quit Kidding Yourself
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Scripture Reading: James 1:16-27
Scripture Text: James 1:16-27
"... Don’t be deceived my dear brothers..."(16)
"...and so deceive yourselves..." (22)
"...he deceives himself..."(26)
As Eve bit into the fruit she experienced the full blunt of the blow, she suffered and stands as a testimony to the "Agony of Deceit," to the Dangers of kidding ourselves.
Tragically, we know (many times from personal experience), that deception did not end in the garden. People still deceive, and are being deceived by both strangers and loved ones. The winds of deception are still blowing and the waves of self destruction are still crashing.
You know, it does not seem the least bit out of line -for James after talking about temptation to talk about deception. The words used here carry the idea of being led away into danger like a wandering sheep. Temptation: Part of the process is that a bait is dropped that looks good to us, appeals to us, interests us... When you fish, you try to deceive the fish into biting the hook by using a bait that attracts the fish... a fisherman presents something to the fish that is intended to trick the fish - and cover up the fisherman’s true motives... Many hunters also use decoy’s to deceive their prey. There are many outside sources that seek to deceive us, sources that present something in a way that appeals to us - but in reality is far from the truth. Perhaps the most dangerous deception of all is self deception, when we deceive ourselves. When we kid ourselves and paint our own picture of reality.
5 things that if we are not careful we can deceive ourselves:
I. Don't Be Deceived About the Source of Good Things
Are there any good things in your life right now? (Good relationships. Good family, nice home, new car, great job...) Where did all these things come from? "Every good & perfect gift is FROM ABOVE ..."
II. Don't Be Deceived About the New Birth
By new birth we mean being born again - becoming a Christian, having our sins forgiven - being made right with God - being saved.
III. Don't Be Deceived About Conflict
I know that we have all heard it before, but the truth is, that communication is ONE OF the leading cause of conflict. Poor communication can led to all kinds of misunderstandings;
IV. Don't Be Deceived About the Importance of Obedience
Anyone here ever looked in a mirror, why do you do that? To make sure you look okay. Nothing out of place....
V. Don't be Deceived About the Nature of True Religion
Religion that God accepts and that He wants, is not merely an outward thing; it's not just about being in a certain building at a certain time , wearing the right clothes, standing when it is time to stand, singing when it's time to sing... it's not merely about observing the outward acts of religion....
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