Norman Frost - Pictures in James

The Bible is full of pictures. I thought I would show you one of these pictures from the Bible. I do not know much about photography. A good photographer tries to get everyone in the picture. He knows you will come out in the picture exactly as you are photographed. When the photo is handed around, everyone says, "How did I turn out?" In James, nobody is left out.


In this book, you will read this expression, "My Brethren," whether it is brothers or sisters, old or young doesn't matter, he used that expression 15 times. 12 times, "My Brethren" and 3 times, "My Beloved Brethren." When God was speaking of His Son, He called Him, "My Beloved Son." The Son said, "I and My Father are One. What He tells me, that will I speak to you; I do always those things that please Him." That is why He is the Well Beloved Son.


There are 15 kinds of men spoken of in this book. When I read that expression - 15 times! It makes me feel that God is a good photographer. He does not want any left out. Some of these people are sad people. One or two are right on the edge, but God does not want them left out. God wants them in the picture. God wants to say, "Come in a little closer." In the back row, there are 7 in that row; right in front, there were another 5 so they don't stand in front of one another. God's Way is an orderly Way. That gets us in the picture. There were 5 in the next row, in front 2, and one right in the front.


Now we will start from James 1:8, "A double minded man is unstable in all his ways." He is a double minded man. Man occurs 21 times God refers to different kinds of me but He doesn't name one of them. Isn't that wise of God? He deals with all our hearts but He doesn't name any single one, but He tells us what we should do, so we can show up in the picture happy, joyous, content, and glad the way the picture comes out.


The first man is a sad man - he is the one on the extreme left of the back row of the picture. He wanted to slip out. But God said, "Come in." A double minded man is a man whose mind is not made up, "You are not happy, you can't be." God said, "If any of you lack wisdom, let them ask of God." Does that not include all of you?


Verse 12, "Blessed is the man that endureth temptation." The next man is a happy man. It's wonderful how God spaced them out. It does not say, "Enjoys it;" the man is tempted. We will be tried by every trick in Satan's book but when we are tried, we will receive a Crown of Life.

 

Verse 13, "Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God." Here is another man that is tempted, this man says, "I am tempted of God. God is not giving me a fair go. He is asking me to do this and that. He should know I am subject to temptation more than other people. I have the kind of nature that is much worse than Bill Smith or Tom Brown." That is how he is thinking. Do you think he is a happy man? Not at all. Every man is tempted when he is drawn away of his own lust. The problem you have got is inside you, you are not measuring up to it, that is where the temptations are coming from.


Verse 19, "Let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath." This man is a happy man. It goes in that order - swift to hear, that is for us to realize, "God is speaking to me." How many times have we listened, to testimonies sung a hymn what has been said by a Worker, and it's spoken to our own hearts? God has judged you, corrected you. We are happy God has been speaking and swift to hear and slow to speak, slow to wrath not easily moved to anger. I think he is a happy man.

 

Verse 22, "But be ye doers of the Word, and not hearers only." If any be a hearer of the Word and forgets all about it, he is not a happy man. This is a sad man - he looks in the mirror, sees a speck on his face, he goes away and forgets about it until someone asks, “Where did he get it?” Then he remembers; he should have done something about it. The glass reflected back what needed to be done. When a boy or girl goes to school or work, before leaving, they check in the mirror. We like to be presentable before other men. Some make some little adjustment and feel alright, but this man is lax and he dashes out and forgets God's Word in the mirror. He is not a happy man.

 

Verse 25, "He looketh into the perfect law of liberty." It affected him like it affected David. He said, "The law is in my heart. I delight to do Thy will that brings liberty and freedom. It is a lamp to my feet and a light unto my path." It is a perfect law of liberty and he looks into it. I think he is the next happy man.

 

Verse 26, "Seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue." He is the last man in the back row. He is not a happy man. He is religious but bridles not his tongue. He has a big profession; he is a man that keeps talking about it, but not much more about it.

 

The next verse enlarges the picture. You can enlarge all these pictures from this book, because the answers are all in there.

 

This is pure religion. Religion is a course of action, it is not a whole lot of talk. There are good men, sad men, happy men, another sad, another happy. There is a sad man on both ends. No wonder God said, "Just come into the picture; I don't want you to be sad. I want you to be in the picture happy and content, smiling," and to the other man, He said that his religion does not mean anything, "I want you to be in the picture happy and contented," and to the other man, "I don't want you to be double minded, but a man whose mind is made up, I'm going to be right in."

 

James 2:2, gives 2 men. One man is rich and one man is poor. The rich man comes into the meeting with a gold ring and fancy apparel. Paul gave the answer to this man, you will find it in James 5:1-5. You enlarge the picture yourselves. It is not a very nice picture - these riches were only for himself  - selfish human nature. I am sure he is not a happy man, the next man is a poor man.


When you come to 2:5, he said, "God hath chosen the poor of this world." He is one of God's choices. He is poor in spirit. He feels he is a nobody, "There is not much to me." He feels it is a struggle for him to be true, "Anyway, I am here." He does not think much of himself, but God has chosen him and put him in the picture. I think he has a smile from ear to ear. I think he is a very happy man. He does not have a gold ring or wonderful apparel but he is happy. He is here because he is God's choice. Remember what God said to His redeemed disciples, "I have chosen you, you have not chosen Me."

 

James 3:14, "Though a man say he hath faith, and not works." Gives us the third man in this row. Here is a man who says, "I have faith," but he has no works. Now I visited a place in India and one day met a man who was selling Bibles in the street. I told Him I had a Bible and did not need any other books but he invited me to his home. So I went to visit him and his wife came out with a little cashe mark on her forehead and this was his home. She was a Hindu lady married to a Pentecostal. She was a ladies and children doctor. She took me to the husbands den. It was lined with religious books of all kinds and again, he tried to sell me some. The lady said, "I would like you to have dinner with us when would it be convenient for you." He again tried to sell me the books. His wife offered me a cup of tea and said, "This husband of mine, he is so heavenly good, he is no earthly use." What was the use of having such a faith, his wife working and keeping the house and entertaining? He is reading religious books telling people to Praise the Lord. I do not think he is a happy man. Trying to force himself to believe he has the real thing.

 

James 2:20, "0 vain man, that faith without works is dead." He is a vain man a man of vanity that sometimes goes with girls, but he is a man who is vain. We like to see manly men you can ask to do something and he does it - vain, empty fellow - not much in him.

 

James 2:24, "How that by works a man is justified." We have our 12th man. It says this man was justified by works not just by faith. So remember Abraham had faith - you can find pictures different ones all through the Bible. God asked Abraham to get out of his country, kindred, and people and go to a place "I will show thee of," that takes real faith to do what Abraham did. God said he was a righteous man.

 

There are just 3 more men. The next man is in the next row and there are 2 men. James 3:2, "The same is a- perfect man, and able also to bridle the whole body." This man is a perfect man and says this man is able to bridle his tongue and bridle the whole body, he is a happy man. Oh my, I have seen some men and I think they are getting pretty close to their Maker - very, very wise when you speak to them. Sometimes, you get excited about something and they will shake their heads and say, "Don't rush in to this." They use the balance their God has taught them, you often see this in older people, that is why they are valuable in the kingdom  - something that keeps the balance. God says, "This is the perfect man." They bridle their tongues.

 

Verse 13, "Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you." We go to the next man, he is sitting right out in the front, this one is sitting next to the perfect man, his friend. He is the wise man and to one in front, those are the 3 that qualify for the title of "My Beloved Brethren." They seem nearest to the photographer. To me, they appear to be Peter, James, and John, close to Jesus. They wanted to be near Him. This wise man - his wisdom is from above. This wisdom is pure, peaceable, gentle, easy to be entreated. Don't you think he is a happy man? Go back over these men. Enlarge the picture - they will come out sad and happy.

 

In closing, would you look at the last man? James 5:16, "The effectual, fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much." He is called the righteous man. This is a reference to him - the effectual, fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much. He is very close to his Master. John was something like this. These disciples would ask John, "You ask the Master this for us." It is nice to be a righteous man. Elias was a man like you and I subject to like passions, but he prayed more earnestly. All that stood between the woman and death was handed over. This lady had a son who took sick. The man said, "Give me your son." This woman handed over the son. This was a righteous man, he restored life. He was sitting out in front of my picture. He is a nappy joyous man because he is in touch with the Giver of life. Am I prepared to remove the smudge or am I prepared to meet my Eternal Camera?