Wednesday, June 20, 2012

James: Mercy Triumphs – Bonus Material – An interview with Beth and Melissa

Chairein! (Ky Rain)

We’re officially done with Homework and Melissa’s Articles. If you’ve opted for that next level of participation, you’ve already written the entire book of James and you may be continuing to memorize it, like I am. (Currently, I’ve memorized 1:1 through 3:10). Our class had an extra week before the start of our next group study, so we took that week to watch the bonus material.

Video Segment: The little snippets of the interview that Kelly Minter conducted with Beth and Melissa were tantalizing. But the full interview is a feast. I wish I could watch it over and over again so I wouldn’t miss anything said by these godly women.

I did glean quite a bit of information if my note-taking was any indication. The theme of James’ Jewishness has been a valuable point since week one. His orthodoxy is revealed in his rabbinic style of verbally punching with honesty rather than beating around the bush with his words. James, unlike Beth, does not hail from a culture steeped in Southern manners! He comes right at you like a brother, bluntly and accurately articulating Torah for Christians.

This book is the bridge between the law and the law-free gospel. The man who was deeply loved by Jesus and penned the epitome of counter-cultural wisdom that has transcended generations was (and still is) dangerous to false teachers. He penned hard-hitting truth that is potentially life-changing.

James cared for the poor. Even Paul knew this was part of who James was (Galatians 2:9-10). His example and his teaching has given me a desire to make caring for the poor party of my Christianity. I want to look into their eyes, as Melissa did in Calcutta, to see what is truly important. Although part of me is sadly skeptical about giving sacrificially to those who may not be truly poor, a discussion that emerged in my study group after watching this interview put this “fear” in its place! It’s up to God to deal with those who are dishonest about their poverty. It’s not that I shouldn’t use the discernment that the Holy Spirit gives me, but that I should give out of obedience to God. Amen! That is the way of health and wholeness in Christ – obedience.

I pray that I will be more vulnerable to the truth of God’s Word now that I’ve completed this study. May the memorization make it even more of a part of me. May it change me from the inside out.

Watching Beth recite the book of James was mesmerizing. I kind of followed along until she reached the point where I’d completed my memorization. Then, the words seemed to tumble out of her in a convicting rapid fire. It will be interesting to watch again after I’ve completed my own memorization.

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