You might remember my post not too long ago with three points James made in the first chapter of his letter to the twelve tribes in the dispersion. If you haven’t read that yet and would like to you can find it here
Well this week we’re going to take a look at the second chapter and see what things we can dig out that James wants us to know.
Consider reading through it on your own before reading the points I found, maybe you’ll find some things that I didn’t see, please feel free to comment and let me know!
Point #1: Show No Partiality
My brothers, show no partiality as you hold the faith in our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory. For if a man wearing a gold ring and fine clothing comes into your assembly, and a poor man in shabby clothing also comes in, and if you pay attention to the one who wears the fine clothing and say, “You sit here in a good place,” while you say to the poor man, “You stand over there,” or, “Sit down at my feet,” have you not then made distinctions among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts? (James 2:1-4 ESV)
James writes that we should not show partiality to those around us. He says that if we do show partiality then we have made distinctions and have become judges with evil thoughts.
Though we may not necessarily treat those who are poor with disrespect, we might have evil thoughts about them or we might think of them differently than we do others who are rich.
The bible tells us many times to love our neighbor. Is it loving to think poorly of someone who is poor or even someone who other people treat with disrespect? Definitely not! We must be careful how and what we think of people assuring that our thoughts are not evil thoughts, but thoughts that are loving and kind toward those who some people may not think of very highly.
Point #2: We Are All Sinners
For whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become accountable for all of it. For he who said, “Do not commit adultery,” also said, “Do not murder.” If you do not commit adultery but do murder, you have become a transgressor of the law. (James 2:10-11 ESV)
The point James is making here is that those who commit one sin but not another are still sinners. If we lie to someone but don’t rob a bank we are still sinners and we have done wrong against God. The word James uses is transgressor. He says we have become a transgressor of the law. If you look up the synonym for transgressor the first word is criminal. We are criminals against God. But because of God’s grace and because of His mercy and love we can be forgiven only if we confess our sins and believe in what Jesus did for us on the cross.
Point #3: Faith Without Works Is Dead
What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that? So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead. (James 2:14-17 ESV)
The main idea and point James is making here is pretty obvious that faith without works is dead. James uses the example of a starving person who is poorly clothed. He gives us this picture of a poor and sick man. If you saw this man and knew his troubles, but all you did was say to him “go away in peace be warmed and filled” but you never did anything for him, what good is this?
How is it possible for us to have faith in God without actually having faith in God, without trusting Him? If our words say we have faith but our lives reflect nothing of the sort, then our faith is dead. Knowing that, hopefully, should make us really think deeply are we really living for God? Are we living with our trust fully in God? That thought should be sobering for us. Hearing James write this to us should make us want to glorify God with all we do so that our faith is in Him and when we do sin be quick to confess and make things right with God.
Thanks for reading I hope these points were helpful to you. Have an enjoyable week, I look forward to sharing again with you next week.