Blessings From God

Dr. Johnathan Sloan gives a sermon about the reciprocity of God’s blessings. Based on James 1:12-18

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*Call to Worship
We gather this morning as creations of the most-high God;
the best, the first fruits of all spoken into being!
We come to praise and glorify God;
and give thanks for all our blessings!
Every good and perfect gift comes from God, given to bless our lives as we bless the lives of others.
Let us worship God!

*Prayer of Confession
Dear Lord, we have been given so much, and are promised all that we need, but we often feel that we need more. Even when abundantly blessed, we take our excess and store it, when we should be sharing with those who have less. You provide us with good and useful things, which we often use for less than your glory. You create us in Your own image, and instead of being more like You, we turn our backs on others, we harshly judge our neighbors and we hold back forgiveness, often blaming our inabilities on You. Help us to appreciate Your blessings, to bless others through these gifts and be the image of You to all we meet…

*Assurance of Pardon
JEsus sees the value in us; He understands our weaknesses and conquers our sins by giving Himself and forgiving us
Thanks be to God!

James 1:12-18 (NRSV)

Trial and Temptation
12 Blessed is anyone who endures temptation. Such a one has stood the test and will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him. 13 No one, when tempted, should say, “I am being tempted by God”; for God cannot be tempted by evil and he himself tempts no one. 14 But one is tempted by one’s own desire, being lured and enticed by it; 15 then, when that desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin, and that sin, when it is fully grown, gives birth to death. 16 Do not be deceived, my beloved.

17 Every generous act of giving, with every perfect gift, is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change. 18 In fulfillment of his own purpose he gave us birth by the word of truth, so that we would become a kind of first fruits of his creatures.