John 1:4 "In Him was life, and the life was the light of men."

John 8:32 "And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”

 John 14:6 "Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me." 




“Recommended Gifts!”

Well, this past Friday marked the beginning of the gift giving season. The Friday after Thanksgiving is referred to as “Black Friday”. People are lined up outside of stores before dawn in an attempt to be the beneficiaries of specific sales targeted at these early shoppers. I have often thought that this is a strange time of the year. People sit in front of a dead tree and eat candy out of socks! All kidding aside; since people are thinking about giving gifts to others, I would like to take a minute and promote some different gift ideas!

James 1:16-18 “Do not be deceived, my beloved brethren. 17 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning. 18 Of His own will He brought us forth by the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of His creatures.”

The letter of James is a letter of practical Christian living; just good practical exhortation. This passage is given in contrast to those who are drawn away into temptation by their own desires and lusts. God on the other hand gives to man both good and perfect (or complete) gifts. Gifts that benefit man in a superior and more lasting way than anything man may achieve without God.

Since James is writing to Christians, he is writing to those who are already beneficiaries of being brought forth by the “word of truth” (Vs. 18). Just as you only grow oak trees when you plant acorns, when you plant the “word of truth” you only produce Christians. This is what Paul instructed, note:

1 Corinthians 4:15 “For though you might have ten thousand instructors in Christ, yet you do not have many fathers; for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the gospel.”

Peter would also instruct concerning this, note:

1 Peter 1:23 “having been born again, not of corruptible seed but incorruptible, through the word of God which lives and abides forever”   

It was God’s purpose that Christians be brought forth by the “word of truth”, this then becomes one of these perfect and good gifts to men from God.

James states that this gift comes from the “Father of lights”. This illustrative term is given to display proof that these gifts truly exist for those who take advantage of them. The word “lights” comes from the word which means, ‘luminous bodies’. We know that life would not exist without light. Since God is the Father of life giving light, this stands as testimony that He also is the Father of all good and perfect gifts. Since light equals life, this parallel would also be used to describe the perfect gift of God, note:

John 1:4 “In Him was life, and the life was the light of men.”

John spoke this concerning the Son of God, who came into the world to offer men the perfect gift of God, salvation from sin!

Since every good gift comes from God and this is the gift giving season, let’s talk gifts!!!

  1. Gifts to Spouses.

When we consider the gifts we are seeking to give our spouses, how about the gift of true marital bliss. God promoted the marriage relationship by describing it as the uniting of two into one (Genesis 2:24). He then commanded them (man and woman) to “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over all that moves over the earth” Genesis 1:28. This could only be done, by the way, as man and woman! In this relationship, they were to complete one another.

The Apostle Paul would enlighten us further as to how to achieve this marital bliss that God has given as a gift, note:

Ephesians 5:28-29 “So husbands ought to love their own wives as their own bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself. 29 For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as the Lord does the church.”

In addition, wives are to submit and reverence their husband, which is made easier by a man who loves his wife properly.

  1. Gifts to Children.

The greatest gift we can offer our children in this life is to bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord (Ephesians 6:4). This responsibility is given to the father as the head of the house. This time of year, many give their children gifts that separate family and undermine the necessary relationships with parents that kids truly need. Designate to give your children lasting and permanent foundations that will help them through their lives.

  1. Gifts to Parents.

Don’t get dad a tie, or mom perfume! Get them the gift that they want more than any other, note:

Ephesians 6:1 “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right.”

Parents do not have to have lived perfectly to know what is best for you. In fact, it is because of the mistakes they have made and learned to avoid, that they have the necessary information to help you to avoid the same problems. Add this wisdom to the Lord’s and the result is:

Ephesians 6:3 “that it may be well with you and you may live long on the earth.”

  1. Gifts to Friends and Family.

The greatest gift that can be given to family is to become a child of God! The trust, concern, and benevolence that the scripture teaches will make one a better friend, and a valued family member.

Galatians 6:10 “Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith.”

It is true that many of our friends and family may not appreciate the change in your life; however, you will know that you are acting in both yours and their best interest!

Romans 12:17 “Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men.”

  1. Give Yourself to God.

All the gifts we have mentioned in this short lesson thus far are inexpensive; and yet, beyond value. They are brief glimpses of a life dedicated to serving God through Christ Jesus. There is not any guarantee that you will be richer (monetarily), without trouble, or beyond reproach from others.  Instead there is a guarantee of a life of bliss after this one. A hope that you can share with every single person that shares your love for the Father of lights.

“Repent and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins” (Acts 2:38). Begin your life as a Christian, learning how to “be steadfast and immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord” (1 Corinthians 15:58). Then give your loved ones the good and perfect gifts of a life directed by the “word of truth”.

Be a better father, mother, son, daughter, friend, and person!

This is the Recommended Gift of God!

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