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Friday, 16 August 2019

James 2 : 1-13

“…have you not shown partiality among yourselves, and become judges with evil thoughts?” James 2:4

The Apostle James in our text today, deals with the Christian’s attitude towards others especially to people from different strata of society- he teaches us the wrongs of partiality, and prejudice. As human beings, we tend to be partial towards people based on their appearance, gender, ability, possession and even position. The apostle is dealing with an issue of Christians being biased towards other Christians; every church member is equal in the sight of God through our Lord Jesus Christ and we are of the same image— poor and rich, men and women, we all carry the imprint of the same God who created us as it is written in Genesis 1:27: “So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them” If we aren’t able to accept others who are made in the image of God, we are dishonoring Him!

Partiality depending on the appearance of a Christian was an issue being dealt by James; as Christians we have to acknowledge the fact that people come from different backgrounds and cultures, and all are precious for God even as they are uniquely different;  even the process of sanctification varies from one person to another, for some it may take long but, all will align ultimately to the biblical way of living as a Christian. For that matter, we should not be partial because of any external factors; for example with people who are dressed modest over those dressed in a secular way, but instead we should take them through the Word of God to show that they need to grow spiritually inside out and live a Christian life; as it is written in 1 Corinthians 3:2 “I fed you with milk and not solid food; for until now you were not able to receive it, and even now you are still not able” 

Here we see the difference shown in the Church between the rich and the poor; Christians showing their preconceived notion between the wealthy and the poor, thinking the wealthy are more spiritual than the poor ones. Since they are blessed with possessions, they think that might be the indication that God is listening to their prayers than the poor Christians. We can see this kind of attitude with the Sadducees and Pharisees since they were of upper class and prominent people among the Jews, most people thought these are men of God and more spiritual than others, and people honored and exalted them above others. But Proverbs 22:2 says that; “The rich and the poor have this in common, The LORD is the maker of them all.” This clearly shows that no matter what your social status is, what God cares is who you are in Christ Jesus.

All Christians are one in the body of Christ and equal in the sight of God, no matter your status, culture or background, 1 John 3:1 says; “Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God.” Therefore we should not be partial with anyone because we all are children of God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Besides, we have to remind ourselves of the mercy that has been shown to us by God through Jesus Christ and extend the same to our brethren. If we would constantly remind ourselves of the “grace in which we now stand” (Romans 5:2), we would be less prejudiced and not be quick to pass judgment on others.

To Act on:

My brothers and sisters,

you are believers in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ.

So treat everyone the same.

~James 2:1 [NIRV]

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