#DailyDevotion Just A Few Last Minute Instructions
James 5:13 Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing praise. 14 Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. 15 And the prayer of faith will save the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. 16 Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working. 17 Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed fervently that it might not rain, and for three years and six months it did not rain on the earth. 18 Then he prayed again, and heaven gave rain, and the earth bore its fruit.
19 My brothers, if anyone among you wanders from the truth and someone brings him back, 20 let him know that whoever brings back a sinner from his wandering will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins.
So James is ending his letter we get something of a laundry list of things to do without a lot of explanation and when he does it’s not overly helpful. Yet, it is sound advice.
Are you suffering? Pray! Prayer lessen the burden. I suggest praying the psalms. The psalms express the thoughts of the new heart of man toward his Maker. We may not always know the best way to complain to God about what we are going through. You may even fear you have blasphemed God by your complaint and now you feel guilty. But by praying the psalms you are praying what God has given you to say without fear and you will know doubt find the words that express what you are going through.
Are you cheerful? Sing songs of praise! The psalms are another good place to go when you want to praise the Lord but just can’t find the words. Praising the Lord is more than just saying, “Praise the Lord.” You must tell others and the Lord of the specific good things that He has done. I don’t just say the Saints did a great job on Sunday. I talk about individual players and plays that had an impact on the game. In the same way, what specifically has the Lord done that deserves praise? Sing about that.
Sick? Get a hold of your pastor and have him pray for you. When he says the prayer of faith will save the sick, the Lord will raise him up and he will be forgiven, the key word there is faith. You may or may not be healed at that moment of your illness, but if you believe, if you put your trust in the one being prayed to, you can be certain that you are saved, that your sins have been forgiven you and on the last day you will be raised from the dead whole and undefiled. Yet if it is God’s will you will be healed through that prayer as well in this age.
Finally, bringing someone back who has wandered from the faith is not about covering your sins but the sins of the wanderer. If we stray from the faith, from the path of life, how can we enter into eternal life? We are on the wrong path that leads only to destruction. But to point us back to Jesus who is the Way, the Truth and the Life puts us back where forgiveness, life and salvation is and saves that person’s soul. Thanks be to God when we are given the opportunity.
Heavenly Father, we undergo many trials and tribulations in life as well as blessings. Grant us your Holy Spirit that we might rightly pray, praise and give thanks in all circumstances in life and help us to lead others to the way of your son Jesus Christ, in whose name we pray. Amen.