A lack of spiritual maturity is widespread which results in Christians experiencing unnecessary strife, is a reason given for this study on the book of James. Wiersbe believes, "if Christians would just grow up, they would become victors instead of victims" (p. 5). He begins with giving us background on James. We're told James "was a popular name, a form of the great Old Testament name Jacob" (p. 7). Tradition has it that James was a man of prayer. Wiersbe provides insight into key words in this study. For example, the word "perfection" trips some people up. He explains that word, as interpreted in Hebrews 6:1 refers to "spiritual maturity" (p. 15).
On the topic of growing spiritually, the author tells us it does not occur automatically, like physical growth. Rather, it is something a person must work at continually. "Faith is always tested" he writes (p. 24). If one maintains the right attitude the testing works in our favor, not against us. While immature people are always impatient, mature people are patient and persistent (p. 25). Certain character traits can come about only through trials. An additional sign of spiritual maturity is that a person does not argue with God's will, but accepts it willingly (p. 27).
James tells his readers to ask God for wisdom. "Wisdom is the right use of knowledge," Wiersbe adds, on page 29. Wisdom keeps trials from being wasted. It enables us to see the reason for the difficulties. One bit of wisdom that will help us endure hardship is the knowledge of God's love for us. Such insight enables us to know that ultimately God's love is greater than any situation we have to bear. Seasons happen for a reason and they do not last indefinitely.
Chapter three explains how to view temptation. Maturation will not occur unless one has overcome trials and temptations (p. 36). "A temptation is an opportunity to accomplish a good thing in a bad way, out of the will of God" (p. 36). Desires are to be servants, not masters. We're encourage, in the next chapter, to mediate on the Wrod of God and put it into practice. Chapter five gives fresh nuggets of truth on grace. Toward the end of the book, he argues persuasively for the viewpoint that God' will is not to be feared, but to be relished. God wants the best for us. It is not logical to fear doing His will. You will be greatly encouraged by the spiritual truths in this wonderful book.