Waiting Patiently By Faith
 Be patient, therefore, brothers, until the coming of the Lord. See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, being patient about it, until it receives the early and the late rains.  You also, be patient. Establish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand.  Do not grumble against one another, brothers, so that you may not be judged; behold, the Judge is standing at the door.  As an example of suffering and patience, brothers, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord.  Behold, we consider those blessed who remained steadfast. You have heard of the steadfastness of Job, and you have seen the purpose of the Lord, how the Lord is compassionate and merciful. But above all, my brothers, do not swear, either by heaven or by earth or by any other oath, but let your “yes” be yes and your “no” be no, so that you may not fall under condemnation. (ESV)
Main Point: In light of God’s faithfulness, we can patiently trust Him as we await His return.
1.Patient as we wait for the Lord (verses 7-8)
“Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into heaven? This Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw Him go into heaven.” — Acts 1:11
2.Patient as we love one another (verse 9)
“He who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ” — Philippians 1:6
3. Patient in times of difficulty and trial (verse 10-11)
“Each day, though it brings its trouble, shall bring its helps … and though your needs should be as many as the sands of the seashore, yet shall God’s grace and mercy last through all your necessities, and you shall never know a real lack.” — Charles Spurgeon
“God is not just showing up after the trouble and cleaning it up. He is plotting the course and managing the troubles with far-reaching purposes for our good and for the glory of Jesus Christ.” — John Piper
Questions for Discussion/Application
- Re-read the text, James 5:7-12. What initial insights and observations do you have from reading this passage?
- In verse 7, James encourages his readers who were enduring severe affliction at the hands of others– “Be patient…until the coming of the Lord.” Reflecting on this verse, the ESV Study Bible reminds us that when Christ returns “he will right all wrongs.” How can this awareness help us to persevere well in the midst of our own afflictions?
- How can the hope of heaven help us now when we face difficult trials of various kinds?
- Re-read verse 9. The ESV Study Bible summarizes, “Do not grumble sums up the divisive complaining behind 3:1–4:12. It can be particularly painful in times of suffering when people explode in frustration and turn upon each other.” Why is it so easy when we are experiencing trial in some way to complain against/grumble against others? Why is grumbling against one another so wrong? What are the consequences of this type of behavior in families and churches?
- Jeremy said, “When we consider the mercy and compassion that God has shown to us, it changes our hearts! No longer can we easily grumble against our neighbor because we’ve experienced God’s mercy! Instead, we can bear with them in their weaknesses and pray for them.” What comments or reflections do you have on that quote?
- What about Job’s example (verse 11) is worthy of emulation in our times of trial and difficulty?
- Over the years, what have you found some of your temptations to be when facing trials and difficult circumstances? If you are in a particular trial right now, what temptations is that trial pressing upon you? How do you want to grow in the way you respond?
- Consider taking time to pray, asking God to help us to endure trials and suffering well even as we patiently wait for the coming of our Lord.