Verse 1 James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes scattered among the nations: Greetings.
Yesterday we talked about how James claimed to be the servant of Jesus, his half-brother. Today we will start talking about the other two things he calls Jesus.
Lord. This isn’t the same as the title of an English gentleman. This title was used in the Old Testament and is often typed out as LORD, with all letters capitalized but the last three in a slightly smaller font. It was a way of saying that He was the ultimate Lord. Kind of like how when we say King of kings we capitalize the first ‘K’ to signify that we are talking about Jesus.
But what does this title really mean and why does James use it for Jesus? In the Bible this title is used to signify someone of authority. In the case where all the letters are all capitalized, it means Authority of all authority. While James doesn’t use the supreme use of the title, he was placing Jesus in that place in his life.
Placing Jesus in the place of Lord of our life is a choice of submission. It is saying that what He says is what we will do, even if it isn’t what we want to do. It is placing Him in full control of our lives. His Lordship in our lives is important as it involves daily decisions to submit to His control. It is saying that His opinion alone matters to us. This isn’t an easy decision. It is so much easier to put ourselves as lord of our lives.
Hudson Taylor said, "Christ is either Lord of all, or He is not Lord at all." This principle of lordship is an all or nothing commitment. Jesus said, “Why do you call me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say?” Jesus knew people were calling Him Lord but He was insistent that they know the cost of calling Him Lord. James knew the cost, probably more than most. But knowing the cost didn’t turn him away from submitting to Jesus. He knew the cost and was still all in.
Making It Personal
Have you made the decision to place Jesus as Lord in your life? Do your choices in life reflect that? What portion of your life is He not Lord over?
Making It Personal Kids
Why does Jesus want to be Lord of our lives? Is obeying Jesus every time hard for you? What do you need to obey Jesus about today?
Father, we do want Jesus as Lord of our life. It isn’t an easy choice to make every day but help us know what He would have us do so that we can obey. In Jesus’ name, amen.