The Apostle James talks about two kinds of people in the verse written above — a hearer who forgets and a doer who acts.
A hearer who forgets is one who reads the Bible without living out its instructions. That person lives with a kind of chronic amnesia. He doesn’t know who he is. He can’t even remember what he read.
On the other hand, a doer who acts lives in freedom. Rather than a confining restraint, God’s perfect law — the law of liberty — is the law that brings freedom.
God’s way, though it’s a hard road, leads to life. The chains of sin fall away. Doers of the Way know that salvation comes through faith in Jesus’ death and resurrection, not by anything we do. We cannot earn our salvation.
God’s law shows us how to rightly relate to God: to serve and worship Him alone, to honor and fear Him above all others, and to seek and love Him with our whole being.
God’s good rules teach us how to live in community where we speak with honesty, live with integrity, love others more than ourselves, and forgive people as God forgave us.
God’s Holy Spirit gives us the power to live out what we read in God’s perfect law. As we understand that we are God’s children, redeemed by Jesus, we experience release from the need for human approval. Because God satisfies all our needs, sinful desires no longer dominate us. We then can embrace the freedom God’s law brings.
Great and merciful God, thank you for freeing me from the grip of sin. I want to be a doer who acts, not a hearer who forgets. Help me to see that your law brings freedom, not imprisonment. Amen.
Go Deeper — Search your heart for any resistance to obey His law. Ask God to show you the cause of your resistance. Pray for the Holy Spirit to reveal how His laws bring freedom.
Photo Credit: Stefan Gessert