Submission to God
James 4:7-10
Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.…

1. Man must "submit himself" to God as the God of the gospel. In dealing with men as sinners, the offended, but most merciful, Majesty of heaven has proposed certain terms as those on which alone He will receive any guilty soul into peace and favour with Himself. These terms are admirably fitted to harmonise the salvation of the sinner with the righteousness of God's government and the threatenings of His law. But pride, and other feelings, in the human heart, are wont to rise up against them. Many "going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God." But submission to this righteousness must be realised in all who would be justified.

2. Man must submit himself to God as the Lawgiver. In offering pardon Heaven does not absolve the sinner from the moral obligation of the law. Naturally, man rises up, both against the duties which the law prescribes, and against the law which prescribes them; and even where some general submission is indicated towards both, particular parts are apt to be resisted and opposed. But the law of God is wise, and right, and good, in all its principles (James 2:11). The more arduous are as truly matters of obligation as the more easy duties. And man, as under law to God in all things, must in all things "submit" himself to Him.

3. Man must "submit himself to God" as the God of providence. Many are the considerations by which this threefold submission to God might be enforced.

(1) Among these is the character of God Himself — more especially His rightful supremacy, His unerring wisdom, His unsullied justice, His irresistible power, His generous love, and His unswerving faithfulness, alike to the threatenings and the promises which He addresses to His creatures.

(2) Here, by the connective word "therefore," the oracular saying, "God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the lowly," is brought to bear, as an enforcement, on the rule, "Submit yourselves to God." And the argument is both clear and strong. If "God sets Himself in battle array against the proud," shall a man proudly refuse to submit to Him? If "God giveth grace to the lowly," Shall not the creature yield meek submission to the Creator, and cast himself in dust and ashes at His feet?

(A. S. Patterson, D. D.)

Parallel Verses
KJV: Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

WEB: Be subject therefore to God. But resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

Submission to God
Top of Page
Top of Page