Here are some great verses from James 5.
James 5:19-20 (HCSB)
19 My brothers, if any among you strays from the truth, and someone turns him back, 20 let him know that whoever turns a sinner from the error of his way will save his life from death and cover a multitude of sins.
Notice that in these last two verses of his letter, James shows compassion for those who have strayed from the truth. He reminds the “brothers” that if some from their fellowship wander away from God, the rest of the church should not turn their backs on them. They should seek to restore them to strong faith in God and restored fellowship with the church family.
- When someone strays from the truth, why is it a temptation to distance yourself from them rather than to reach out to them?
12 So, whoever thinks he stands must be careful not to fall. 13 No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to humanity. God is faithful, and He will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation He will also provide a way of escape so that you are able to bear it.
- If you remember that we are all susceptible to temptations, how does that help you in your attitude, words and actions as you reach out to others?
- What do you learn from 1 Corinthians 10:12-13 that can help you as you seek to help others to be restored to strong faith in Christ and fellowship with other believers?
James 5:19 says, “if any among you strays from the truth” (emphasis added). The truth is the word of God. Throughout his letter, James describes many ways that a person could be straying from the truth. Take a moment to scan James chapters 1-5 to see a few of these ways. Grab your Bible or read it online HERE.
- List at least five things that James chapters 1-5 teach us about how our actions, words, and attitudes need to be in line with God’s truth.
- Why is it essential that we continually be reading God’s Word and studying it ourselves to remind ourselves of God’s truths?
- Why is it important for us to remember that the ministry of restoration is everyone’s responsibility, not just the pastors’ or church leaders’ responsibility?
- Pray for the person to be restored to strong faith in Jesus Christ (read James 5:13-18).
- Examine your own life before you even consider approaching the person who has strayed (read Matthew 7:1-5 and Galatians 6:1-5). Make sure that your words, your actions, and your attitudes are in line with Christ.
- Reach out in love and compassion (read 1 Corinthians 13:1-13). Give them a call, send them a message, invite them for a cup of coffee, or reach out in a number of ways.
- Think about and discuss these principles and verses. How can you put them into practice?
10 A thief comes only to steal and to kill and to destroy. I have come so that they may have life and have it in abundance.
- Is there anyone that the Lord is leading you to reach out to?
- Perhaps this message has encouraged you to be restored back to a closer walk with Christ. If so, what steps will you take this week?