Because of Love
James 1:12 says “Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.”
If you have been following my recent posts you will have noticed that I am focusing on the book of James. James is one of my favourite books but I have never really taken the time to study it out so I’m loving studying and writing these posts. Chapter one has dealt with a lot of issues concerning temptations, and this verse gives us the reason why and how we can endure them.
The verse starts out by saying “blessed is the man that endureth temptation”. God is saying here simply that the man who endures through temptation and is not carried away by his own lusts will be blessed. Temptations, as we have seen in my other posts, can also be described as the trying of your faith (1:3). God sets out little tests to see how strong our faith is and we see here that when we endure through it and keep our faith strong then will we be blessed.
Notice that the word temptation is followed by a colon which shows us that the next bit is a follow up or a more in depth analysis of the preceding phrase. The verse continues “for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.” It is worth noting here that the word tried in the original Greek is dokimos (dok’-ee-mos) meaning approved or accepted so this secondary part of the verse is to be understood as post-temptation. God is therefore saying when a person has successfully come through temptation with their faith in one piece; then they will receive the crown of life.
If I’m honest I’m uncertain about the crown of life. Whether James is using it for sake of illustration emphasising their victory over temptation or if he means that when we get to heaven there will be a legitimate crown awarded I am not sure, but I am sure of the fact that whoever gets through temptation will receive something (personally I would be more inclined towards the receiving of a crown in heaven due to the phrase following: which the Lord hath promised which makes me think if the Lord has promised it then it must be a literal object, but that’s just my opinion).
Finally we get to the reason why we can endure temptation. The end of the verse says “which the Lord hath promised to them that love him”. We can endure through temptations purely on our love for God. Love is the spiritual motivation behind every pleasing thing towards God. Why can we have a joyful attitude towards trials? Because we love God and he loves us and we know that because of this He won’t let us be harmed. Why can we have an understanding mind? Because He loves us and has shared His truth with us. Why can we have a believing heart? Because love and faith go together. When you love someone you trust them and you don’t hesitate to ask for help. It’s the exact same with God. We can trust God and ask Him for help because He loves us and we love Him in return. If we love God we will have no problem enduring through any temptation because we want to please Him. As love keeps a husband faithful to his wife so does love keep us faithful to God. We have no desire to hurt Him because we love Him too much. The Christian who loves God, and knows God loves him; will not fall apart when God permits trails to come. He is secure in God’s love.
If you are going through trials or temptations at the moment you can be strengthened in the knowledge that if you endure through it you will be blessed and will receive the crown of life. All you need to get through any temptation is the love for and of God. If you love Him you will not want to fall into temptation, you will not want to let Him down. If you find yourself constantly falling for temptations search your own heart and see how strong your love is. Are you doubting Gods love for you? If you are know that He loves you, so much so that He sent His only son Jesus to die for you. He loves you so much and He wants you to love Him back. So when trials come lean on the Lord, rest secure in His love and let your love for Him get you through anything. Love is the key; use it. – Andrew
Posted on September 5, 2012, in Andrew's Thoughts for the Day and tagged Bible, Christian, Christianity, Evangelism, Faith, God, God's love, James, Jesus, Lord, Love, Religion and Spirituality, Temptation. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.