It Comes by the Word of Truth

It Comes by the Word of Truth

“Of his own will he brought us forth by the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures” (v. 18). As James thinks of the goodness of God, he naturally turns to an illustration his readers would understand. The phrase “brought us forth” translates a Greek word that means “to give birth.” What do we know about this divine birth?

It Starts with God.

The text says God saved us “of his own will.” Whatever else we can say about our “free will,” let’s be clear on one key point. Salvation doesn’t start with us; it starts with God. I’m reminded of the new convert who rose with great joy in a prayer meeting to share his testimony of how Jesus saved him. Afterwards, an older Christian, thinking to admonish him, said, “My brother, what you shared was wonderful, but you didn’t say anything about your part in salvation.” The new convert replied, “My part in salvation was to run from the Lord as fast as I could.

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