“Come now, you who say, ‘Today or tomorrow we shall go into such and such a town, spend a year there doing business, and make a profit’— you have no idea what your life will be like tomorrow. You are a puff of smoke that appears briefly and then disappears. Instead you should say, ‘If the Lord wills it, we shall live to do this or that.’ But now you are boasting in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil. So for one who knows the right thing to do and does not do it, it is a sin.”
---End of Scripture verses---
Friends, none of us knows what tomorrow might hold for us. We may be alive and healthy and prosperous, or we may not. It is important to make our plans as if life will go on because as long as it does there will be bills to pay, work to do and responsibilities to uphold. But, it is more important to make plans for the inevitability and certainty of death, Judgment and eternity. In the grand scheme of things our lives are just like a “vapor”—“a puff of smoke that appears briefly and then disappears” (verse 14). Methuselah lived 969 years and yet his life is just a distant memory now like a mist that the wind blew away several thousand years ago.
I want us to understand the type of attitude that James condemns in this passage. It is “boasting” (verse 16) about all the business that will be done and the money that will be made in the year ahead (verse 13). Notice that the type of person he chastises is one that gives all his attention to the world and its affairs and none to what “the Lord wills” (verse 15). The perfect will of the Lord should be our main concern in this life because heaven awaits us if we are determined to do His bidding on earth. Don’t fool yourself into thinking that you are in control of the future. Our times on earth are in His hand (Proverbs 31:15).
“Therefore if you have been raised up with Christ, keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth. For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is our life, is revealed, then you also will be revealed with Him in glory.” (Colossians 3:1-4)
Please read James 5:1-6 for tomorrow.
Hope you have a wonderful day!
- Louie Taylor