Sermon prepared by Dr James A McCullen
A RUSTY WITNESS
James 5:1-6   NASB
[1] Come now, you rich, weep and howl for your miseries which are coming upon you.   {2} Your riches have rotted and your garments have become moth-eaten.   {3} Your gold and your silver have rusted; and their rust will be a witness against you and will consume your flesh like fire. It is in the last days that you have stored up your treasure!   {4} Behold, the pay of the laborers who mowed your fields, and which has been withheld by you, cries out against you; and the outcry of those who did the harvesting
has reached the ears of the Lord of Sabaoth. SAB A OTH     {5} You have lived luxuriously on the earth and led a life of wanton pleasure; you have fattened your hearts in a day of slaughter.   {6} You have condemned and put to death the righteous man; he does not resist you.

INTRODUCTION
NEGLECT CAUSES RUST OR TARNISHING. James has in mind some rich persons in the church. They are poor examples of Christians.   James is not condemning rich people or riches but the miss-use of riches .

We need rich people. We need them for there busoness expertise and their concern for the welfare of there fellow man. I never got a job from a poor man. Did you?    Rich men need to work hard at keeping their wealth in perspective. This is what James condenmes. It could even be poor people who covet and abuse money when the have it.

1. A RUSTY WITNESS CAUSED BY . . STORED TREASURE.

2. A RUSTY WITNESS CAUSED BY . . SHOUTING TREASURE.

3. A RUSTY WITNESS CAUSED BY . . SINFUL TREASURE.
 
 
 

1.    A RUSTY WITNESS Caused by . . Stored Treasure. v 1-3 
EXPLANATION

A.    Stored Treasure has . . Rotted. v 1-2

[1] Come now, you rich, weep and howl for your miseries which are coming upon you.   {2} Your riches have rotted and your garments have become moth-eaten.

v 2 KJV CORRUPTED only time word used in NT Strong's # 4595 sepo (say'-po); apparently a primary verb; to putrefy, i.e. (figuratively) perish: KJV-- be corrupted. (DIC)

B.    Stored Treasure has . . Rusted. v 3 a "Your gold and your silver have rusted;. . . "

v 3 cnakered KJV only time used in NT

Strong's # 2728 katioo (kat-ee-o'-o); from 2596 and a derivative of 2447; to rust down, i.e. corrode: KJV-- canker.

Strong's # 2447 ios (ee-os'); perhaps from eimi (to go) or hiemi (to send); rust (as if emitted by metals); also venom (as emitted by serpents): KJV-- poison, rust. (DIC)

v 3 Rust used 3 times 2 times poison

James 3:8 But the tongue can no man tame; it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. (KJV)

C.    Stored Treasure has . . Ratted. v 3 b
        ". . . and their rust will be a witness against you and will consume your flesh like fire.  It is in the last days that you have stored up your treasure!

v 3 heaped KJV v 3 Treasure same as Heaped

Strong's # 2343 thesaurizo (thay-sow-rid'-zo); from 2344; to amass or reserve (literally or figuratively): KJV-- lay up (treasure), (keep) in store, (heap) treasure (together, up).

Strong's # 2344 thesauros (thay-sow-ros'); from 5087; a deposit, i.e. wealth (literally or figuratively): KJV-- treasure. (DIC)

Strong's # 5087 tithemi (tith'-ay-mee); a prolonged form of a primary theo (theh'-o) (which is used only as alternate in certain tenses); to place (in the widest application, literally and figuratively; properly,

ILLUSTRATION
I don't know about you, but I weary of the way that the devil continues to portray only the fun side of sin. Sin is fun and pleasurable, but only for a season. It has another ugly side that is carefully hidden by the deceiver himself. I'm referring to the consequences of all sin -- heartache, disappointment, and eventual death.

Consider this recent description of Andy Gibb on the cover of "People Magazine". A superstar at 19, the baby Bee Gee' had it all but couldn't handle it. A generous, likable kid, he blew his fortune on cocaine and blamed his troubles on a breakup with Victoria Principal. Trying for a comeback, he died, bankrupt, at 30.

APPLICATION

Some CHURCHES MORE CONCERNED ABOUT AMOUNT IN TREASURE THAN SOULS .  If that is us we have a rusty witness.
 
 
 

2.    A RUSTY WITNESS Caused by. . Shouting Treasure. v 4 
EXPLANATION

A. Shouting Treasure of . . Wages. v 4 a
        "Behold, the pay of the laborers who mowed your fields, and which has been withheld by you, cries out against you; . . . "

v 4 Fraud used 8 times in NT 3 times in this verse as:  kept, back, and fraud.

James 5:4 Behold, the hire of the labourers who have reaped down your fields, which is of you kept back by fraud, crieth: and the cries of them which have reaped are entered into the ears of the Lord of sabaoth. (KJV)

Strong's # 650 apostereo (ap-os-ter-eh'-o); from 575 and stereo (to deprive); to despoil: KJV-- defraud,
destitute, kept back by fraud. (DIC)
 

B. Shouting Treasure of . . Workers. v 4 b
        ". . . and the outcry of those who did the harvesting has reached the ears of the Lord of Sabaoth."
    (SAB A OTH ]

v 4 Sabaoth SAB ay ahth used 2 times in NT Rom 9:29 and here

Romans 9:29 And as Esaias said before, Except the Lord of Sabaoth had left us a seed, we had been as Sodoma, and been made like unto Gomorrha. (KJV)

ILLUSTRATION
The "War Cry" carried a story about a tenant farmer who had worked hard for many years to improve the production of the land. Then something happened that caused him to become very bitter. When it was time to renew his lease, the owner told him he was going to sell the farm to his son who was getting married.

The tenant made several generous offers to buy it himself, hoping the man's decision would be reversed. But it was all in vain. As the day drew near for the farmer to vacate his home, his weeks of angry brooding finally got the best of him. He gathered seeds from some of the most pesky and noxious weeds he could find. Then he spent many hours scattering them on the clean, fertile soil of the farm, along with a lot of trash and stones he had collected.

To his dismay, the very next morning the owner informed him that plans for his son's wedding had fallen through, and therefore he would be happy to renew the lease. He couldn't understand why the farmer exclaimed in agonizing tones, "Oh, Lord, what a fool I've been!" The lesson is clear: Whatever we sow, we will eventually reap.

APPLICATION
What are we sowing with our wealth.  You may exclaim I am not wealthy.  Compared to the world we are,  and we will answer what our personal wealth has accomplished for the Lord.
 
 
 

3.    A RUSTY WITNESS Caused by . . Sinful Treasure. v 5-6 
EXPLANATION

A. Sinful Treasure of . . Comfort. v 5
{5} You have lived luxuriously on the earth and led a life of wanton pleasure; you have fattened your hearts in a day of slaughter.

v 5 wanton used 2 times in NT here ane 1 tim 5:6 pleasure

1 Tim 5:6 But she that liveth in pleasure is dead while she liveth. (KJV)

    1. Fatted like a pig for slaughter

B. Sinful Treasure of . . Condemnation. v 6

6} You have condemned and put to death the righteous man; he does not resist you.

v 6 condenmed used 5 times this the only time out of gospels

Strong's # 2613 katadikazo (kat-ad-ik-ad'-zo); from 2596 and a derivative of 1349; to adjudge against, i.e
pronounce guilty: KJV-- condemn. (DIC)

Strong's # 2596 kata (kat-ah'); a primary particle; (prepositionally) down

Strong's # 1349 dike (dee'-kay); probably from 1166; right (as self-evident), i.e. justice (the principle, a
decision, or its execution): KJV-- judgment, punish, vengeance.

ILLUSTRATION
A friend told me about a man who had come to him with a prayer request. He had purchased a lottery ticket that would pay him $100,000 if it turned out to be the "lucky" one. He asked my friend, who was a pastor, to pray that his number would be picked so he could give one-tenth of his winnings to the Lord. The minister hesitated, the said, "All right, but first let me ask you this: Are you willing to give God the same percentage of your present weekly income?" The fellow looked surprised and dismayed. "B-b-but I need that to live on," he stammered. This man's heart was not right with God. His seemingly spiritual request was merely a coverup for selfishness.

APPLICATION

What kind of a witness is our personal treasures.   If you lost your check book stubs and some one found them what could they tell about you.  With the tell of a rusty witness or a bright shining one?  A Rusty Witness can be caused by:

1.    STORED TREASURE.

2.    SHOUTING TREASURE.

3.    SINFUL TREASURE.
 

 

 

 
 
 
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