Pastor’s Pen: June 29th

United Outreach ChurchNews

From the Pastor’s Pen: James 4:1-6
Conflicts have always plagued the church. Members fighting members. Leaders fighting leaders. Churches fighting churches. James recognizes the devastating effect of church fights. More importantly, he helps us understand what is happening inside a Christian who chooses to fight other Christian. When we fight in church, we are…
1. Dominated by selfish desires (v.1)- James traces all prolonged fighting and flare-ups to an individual pursuit of self-gratification.
Rather than lifting up the Lord, fighting is often a poorly-masked attempt to elevate self.
2. Driven by dissatisfaction (v.2)- According to James, the person who chooses to fight is never satisfied. Others are viewed as obstacles, not brothers. Prayer is completely absent or abused.
3. Discouraged in prayer (v.2-3) – Some people who fight are frustrated because they do not bother to seek God in prayer. Others are frustrated because they do take time to pray and nothing happens. James explains that our needs are met as we pray according to His will. Christians are called to submit their wills to His will. They are never simply to fulfill their own selfish wants.
4. Denied intimacy with God (v.4-6)-Spiritual adultery is the ultimate result of yielding to selfish desires. When we fail to seek God’s will, the Holy Spirit is jealous of our misplaced energy and affection. Fighting is often the result of submitting to worldly, selfish pursuit in the place of a passion for God. If we allow pride to destroy our relationships in the church, we are setting aside the Lord’s will that we walk in fellowship with our brothers and sisters.
Finally: Fighting in churches hinders the advance of the good news of Jesus Christ. Driven by root cause of pride and the pursuit of personal goals, fighting Christians will damage and dismantle a churches witness in a community.