Presumptive Arrogance in the Church
Passage: James 4:11–4:17
Point # 1 Christian, do not speak against or judge a brother or sister. That is arrogant presumption and a violation of the Law of God. (11-12)
Point # 2 Christian, any planning in our life which ignores God’s sovereign providence is arrogant presumption (13-17).
a) Christians should not presume to know the future but should always leave room for God’s will to overrule theirs (13-15).
- The wrong attitude is to pronounce confidently on all upcoming events – we do not even know when we will die (13-14)!
- The right attitude is to plan, but to make allowance for God’s will to change those plans (15).
b) Such presumption about the future is in fact boasting in one’s own arrogance (16-17)
- For Christians, such boating is evil (16).
This is because Christians know better (17).
The Bible as a whole, and sometimes in specific texts, presupposes or teaches that both of the following propositions are simultaneously true:
1) God is absolutely sovereign, but his sovereignty never functions in such a way that human responsibility is curtailed, minimized or mitigated.
2) Human beings are morally responsible creatures–they significantly choose, rebel, obey, believe, defy, make decisions, and so forth, and they are rightly held accountable for such actions; but this characteristic never functions so as to make God absolutely contingent (or secondary, a responder, dependent upon us in some sense).