[Having heard the warnings of our Lord through James about wealth and its
misuse. We now focus on our response
toward those who, in spite of God’s warnings, misuse their wealth.
James mentioned those who hold back the wages of their workers, obviously
to gain control over them, and those who use their wealth through bribes to
influence justice for their own purposes.
Now the focus flips to the response of those who are unjustly affected by
the misuse of the wealth God has provided.]
[Notice what James wrote in verse 9 of our text,]
Grudge not one against another, brethren, lest ye be condemned:
behold, the judge standeth before the door. ]
What does this mean?]
στενάζετε (Gk) -
narrow, contracted (as when one is squeezed or pressed by circumstances). To
groan, sigh, used intrans.of persons in distress, affliction (Rom. 8:23; 2 Cor.
5:2, 4; Heb. 13:17); grumble from impatience, ill–humor (James 5:9); of those
who offer silent prayer (Mark 7:34 [see Is. 24:7; Lam. 1:21]). ]
[Hence grudging means murmuring or complaining. It is the equivalent of
saying stop your
belly aching. I recall
hearing David Ring,
an Evangelist with
Cerebral Palsy. In the
time frame when David was born most children with cerebral palsy didn’t live all
that long, but David did. When he
was 14 years old
David was orphaned and bounced around from family to family.
David went on to find the Lord Jesus Christ and then become a herald for
the Gospel of our Lord. I heard him
preach a message entitled “Stop Your Belly Aching.”
If there were ever a person who had just cause to grumble and complain it
is David Ring. But he heard the Word
of God, and believed the promises of God, and declares with James, GRUDGE
Consider From Our Text,
The Sin of Grudging
[– Make no mistake about it complaining, murmuring, and grudging is a sin
Condemnation of Complaining (vs 9; Mark 4.64) [–
Grudge not one against another,
lest ye be condemned:
behold, the judge standeth before the door. - Let us not miss the
force of the words James used in this text.
James undeniably states that if we murmur and complain we stand in the
way of condemnation.]
(Gk) - from
katá (2596), against, and
to judge. To pronounce sentence against, condemn, adjudge guilty.
(I) Followed by the acc. of person and the dat.
of punishment (Matt. 20:18, “they shall condemn him to death”; Mark 10:33;
2 Pet. 2:6); by the acc. of person and inf. (Mark 14:64); by the acc. of person,
the crime or punishment being implied (John 8:10, 11; Rom. 2:1). Used in an
absolute sense (Rom. 8:34; pass. in Matt. 27:3). Of the last judgment (Mark
16:16; 1 Cor. 11:32). Figuratively (Rom. 8:3, condemned or passed sentence upon
all carnal lusts and passions, in antithesis to Rom. 8:1 [cf. Rom. 6:1ff.]).
(II) By implication, to condemn by contrast,
i.e., to show by one’s good conduct that others are guilty of misconduct and
deserve condemnation, followed by the acc. (Matt. 12:41, 42; Luke 11:31, 32;
Heb. 11:7). Pass. in Rom. 14:23.]
[Manuscript Variation -
The word translated here condemned is
found in the Textus Receptus but a different Greek word is used in the NA27.
Hence, there will be a noticeable difference in the way the King
James reads when compared to most modern translation.
The word used in the Textus Receptus and the King James Bible is far
stronger than that which is used in the text of modern translations.]
- James says that grudging, complaining, and murmuring has the force and power
This condemnation means to reach a final judgment, a judgment potentially
unto death. Modern translations
dramatically soften the severity of the blow for grudging, complaining and
murmuring, which of course in our human tendency.
Complaining is such a natural part of our humanity that we do not wish to
admit to the depth of its depravity.]
[The word used here for condemned, in the Textus Receptus,
is the same word used to describe the
sentence rendered against our Lord in His judgment.]
Ye have heard the blasphemy: what think ye?
And they all condemned
him to be guilty of death. ]
[James is using a forceful word to help us
understand the severity of grudging or complaining in our lives.
There is a condemnation or final judgment that accompanies our
The Contexts of Complaining (Num
14.26-32; Jude 1.11; Num 16.31-34, 41-49; 1 Cor 10.6-10) [–
In support of James position and context let us examine murmuring and
complaining in the Bible. There were
many occasions when God’s people murmured and complained to God and about God.
There are more passages than I could help to expound during this message.
We will briefly touch on a few.]
26 And the LORD spake unto Moses and unto
Aaron, saying, 27 How long
shall I bear with this evil
which murmur against me?
I have heard the murmurings of the children of Israel, which they murmur against
me. 28 Say unto them,
As truly as I live, saith the
as ye have spoken in
mine ears, so will I do to you:
[Be careful what you pray for or say unto
God, He just may give you what you ask for.
Perhaps we need to realize that when we complain to or about God we are
speaking to God.]
Your carcases shall fall in this wilderness; and all that were numbered of
you, according to your whole number, from twenty years old and upward,
which have murmured
against me, 30 Doubtless ye shall not come into the land,
concerning which I sware to make
you dwell therein, save Caleb the son of Jephunneh, and Joshua the son of Nun.
31 But your little ones, which ye
said should be a prey, them will I bring in, and they shall know the land which
ye have despised. 32
as for you, your carcases, they
shall fall in this wilderness.]
murmured against God concerning the report of the spies that searched out the
Promised Land and as a result of their complaining they received exactly what
they asked for. They were condemned
to the wilderness, final judgment was passed, and they could not enter into the
land of blessing and promise because of their complaining.
There is a worldly, mortal condemnation that accompanies our grudging,
murmuring and complaining. Complaining will have an undeniable impact upon your usefulness to
your Heavenly Father in this mortal life and world.]
Example, The Rebellion of Korah, Which is
- Notice what the new testament
says about the matter of Korah,]
Woe unto them! for they have gone in the way of Cain, and ran
greedily after the error of Balaam for reward,
and perished in the
gainsaying of Core. ]
[The Levite Korah became discontented with Moses,
Aaron, and ultimately God; please note you can not be upset with God’s called
men and not also be upset with God.
Korah decided someone else needed to lead the people of
This was none other than an all out rebellion.
The word gainsaying is a word translated from a Greek word that literally
means “to rise up a rebellion.”]
(Gk) - to contradict. Contradiction.]
[(I) Controversy, question, strife (Heb. 6:16;
7:7). Spoken of a controversy before a judge (Sept.:
Ex. 18:16; Deut. 25:1; 2 Sam. 15:4).]
[(II) Reproach (Heb. 12:3 [cf. Matt. 26:60;
27:22, 29, 40–49]; Acts 13:45; Jude 1:11). Rebellion or strife or reproach
(Sept.: Num. 20:13; Deut. 21:5; Ps. 80:6). ]
[Hence, God leads Moses to bring Korah and his company
and God’s chosen men Moses, Aaron and his sons before God and His tabernacle and
God shows who His called men are.
The end of the story is,]
31 And it came to pass, as he had made an
end of speaking all these words, that the ground clave asunder that
was under them:
32 And the earth opened her mouth, and
swallowed them up, and their houses, and all the men that
appertained unto Korah, and all
33 They, and all that
appertained to them, went down alive into the pit, and the earth
closed upon them: and they perished from among the congregation.
34 And all Israel that
were round about them fled at the cry of them: for they said,
Lest the earth swallow us up also.
[Be careful about grudging and complaining they grow
like wild weeds and will build to utter rebellion if you don’t get them under
control quickly. The end of
gainsaying is Rebellious Condemnation.
Korah and his cohorts met physical death for their rebellion and many
were judged with them. Grudging and
complaining will always impact those who are around you.]
example results in Fatal
[Shortly after the fall of Korah and his company the
people of Israel
rose up and murmured against Moses, Aaron, and ultimately God.
The passage reads,]
41 But on the morrow all the congregation
of the children of Israel
murmured against Moses
and against Aaron, saying, Ye have killed the people of the LORD.
42 And it came to pass, when the
congregation was gathered against Moses and against Aaron, that they looked
toward the tabernacle of the congregation: and, behold, the cloud covered it,
and the glory of the LORD appeared. 43
And Moses and Aaron came before the tabernacle of the congregation.
44 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
45 Get you up from among this
congregation, that I may consume them as in a moment. And they fell upon their
faces. 46 And Moses said unto Aaron,
Take a censer, and put fire therein from off the altar, and put on incense, and
go quickly unto the congregation, and make an atonement for them: for there is
wrath gone out from the LORD; the plague is begun.
47 And Aaron took as Moses commanded, and
ran into the midst of the congregation; and, behold, the plague was begun among
the people: and he put on incense, and made an atonement for the people.
48 And he stood between the dead and the
living; and the plague was stayed. 49
Now they that died in the plague were fourteen thousand and seven hundred,
beside them that died about the matter of Korah.]
[Of this Murmuring the New Testament records,]
6 Now these things were our examples, to
the intent we should not lust after evil things, as they also lusted.
7 Neither be ye idolaters, as
were some of them; as it is
written, The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play.
8 Neither let us commit fornication, as
some of them committed, and fell in one day three and twenty thousand.
9 Neither let us tempt Christ, as some of
them also tempted, and were destroyed of serpents.
Neither murmur ye, as
some of them also murmured, and were destroyed of the destroyer.]
[All of this has been said to demonstrate to you just
what God meant when He said that grudging will result in condemnation.
God is talking about mortal condemnation, which is complaining that will
destroy the blessings God has for you in this life. It also refers to Fatal
condemnation, which is complaining that can bring your mortal life to a quick
and unexpected end.]
The Significance of Grudging [–
We might ask, why is grudging,
murmuring, and complaining so destructive in our lives?
Grudging is destructive because a complaining spirit reveals some rather
large deficiencies in our relationship with our Heavenly Father.]
Our Complaints Show a Lack of Patience (vs
Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord. Behold, the
husbandman waiteth for
the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive
the early and latter rain. 8
Be ye also patient;
stablish your hearts: for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh.
– The sowing and reaping principle permeates the word of God and
demonstrates dynamically how our Lord works in our lives.
This principles teaches that,]
[We must labor to sow the spiritual seeds of faith
[We must wait for God to give life and growth to
[We will reap a harvest if we sow and patiently wait
[Murmuring and complaining reveal a lack of patience and a failure to
agree with God’s plan for our lives, our world, and eternity to come.
Murmuring and complaining demonstrate a lack of surrender to the Lord of
all creation, and a demand to rule over ones circumstances and situations.
It is the outward manifestation of the lie that Eve bought into in the
Garden of Eden when Satan convinced her that she would be as God.
Hence, when we murmur and complain we demonstrate a lack of patience with
and toward God.]
[How long does James say we should be patient in our lives?
James says it twice, .
. . until the coming of the Lord (vs 7-8).]
Our Complaints Show a Lack of Persuasion (vs
9) [– Grudge not one against another, brethren, lest ye be condemned:
behold, the judge standeth before the door. – The persuasion I’m
referring to is the persuasion that God and God alone is the final authority,
the only authority in life. Our
complaints reveal that we feel that we are somehow a controlling authority for
our lives. This is the American mind
set. It is the individualistic idea.
It is the philosophy of humanism.
[James reminds us that there is one and only one judge in life and that is
the Lord Jesus Christ. Through
complaining and murmuring we demonstrate that we are not satisfied with the
judgment of Almighty God. We presume
that there is a better way to handle the affairs of life and this world and we
presume to know what that way is.
Notice how Paul continued his discourse in 1 Corinthians,]
Neither murmur ye,
as some of them also murmured, and were destroyed of the destroyer.
11 Now all these things happened unto
them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends
of the world are come. 12
Wherefore let him that
thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall.
There hath no
temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God
is faithful, who will not suffer
you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make
a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear
Wherefore, my dearly
beloved, flee from idolatry. ]
[My Christian friends let us be careful about the temptation to think
ourselves wiser than our Heavenly Father, which is undeniably revealed in our
grudging and complaining.]
Our Complaints Show a Lack of Persistence
(vs 10-12, 8) [-
Take, my brethren, the prophets, who have
spoken in the name of the Lord,
for an example of
suffering affliction, and of patience.
11 Behold, we count them happy
Ye have heard of the patience of Job, and have seen the end of the Lord; that
the Lord is very pitiful, and of tender mercy. 12
But above all things, my brethren, swear not, neither by heaven,
neither by the earth, neither by any other oath: but let your yea be yea; and
your nay, nay; lest ye fall into
condemnation. - James now
reminds us that through the circumstances of our life we are called upon by our
God to stand firm and endure to the end.
We must stand in purity and righteousness no matter what comes our way.
We must anticipate and expect difficulty and trials but must patiently
trust and obey our Lord at all time.
Be ye also patient;
stablish your hearts:
for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh. ]
children of our Heavenly Father we must understand that we do not always see
things as our Lord sees things.
Therefore, we will seldom fully recognize why things must happen they way they
do. None-the-less we must trust His
sovereign hand and teach ourselves to be content with His plan and purposes for
The Surrender of Grudging (vs 9; Philip
2.14) [- As the children of our Heavenly Father we must learn to hear our Lord
Grudge not one against another, . . .
14 Do all things without murmurings and
[Nothing divides and destroys like grudging,
complaining, and murmuring. A
murmuring spirit is contagious like the worst diseases known to mankind.
It will destroy the reputation and testimony of the Church of our Lord
Jesus Christ. It will devour the joy
and lives of those who are around it.
Let us refuse to Grudge and surrender our murmuring spirit to our Lord
Church, April 26, 2009, Evening