“One who looks intently at the perfect law, the law of liberty, and abides by it, not having become a forgetful hearer but an effectual doer, this man shall be blessed in what he does” (James 1:25).
Doers of the Word are persevering learners.
The phrase “and abides by it” in James 1:25 demands our close attention. “Abide” translates a Greek word that means “to stay beside,” “remain,” or “continue.” The idea is that a doer of the Word continually and habitually gazes into God’s perfect law. In other words, he is a persevering learner.
When you have that level of commitment to the Word, you will be an effectual doer—one who is in union with God’s will and seeks to obey it above all else. As you do, God will bless you. That doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll be successful in the eyes of the world, but your priorities and perspectives will be right and the Lord will honor what you do.
This verse is a call to carefully examine yourself in light of God’s standards. That’s not a popular thing in our society because many people have an aversion to serious spiritual thought and self-examination. I believe that’s why Christian television, music, and other forms of entertainment are so popular. Escaping reality through entertainment is far more appealing to most people than gazing into the mirror of God’s Word and having their spiritual flaws and blemishes exposed. But if you desire to be like Christ, you must see yourself for what you are and make any needed corrections. To do that, you must continually examine your life in the light of Scripture.
Can you imagine what the church would be if every Christian did that? Can you imagine the changes in your own life if you did it more consistently? Only the Holy Spirit can enable you to be a doer of the Word. So yield to His leading through prayer and confession as you continue to study and apply God’s Word.
Suggestions for Prayer
Whenever you study Scripture, ask the Spirit to illuminate your mind and heart, and to use the Word to transform you more and more into the image of Christ.