Be Impartial and Fair: James 2:1-12

May 6th, 2009

James 2:1-12


2:1.  My brethren, do not hold the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, with partiality.
 2:2.  For if there should come into your assembly a man with gold rings, in fine apparel, and there should also come in a poor man in filthy clothes,
 2:3.  and you pay attention to the one wearing the fine clothes and say to him, "You sit here in a good place,'' and say to the poor man, "You stand there,'' or, "Sit here at my footstool,''
 2:4.  have you not shown partiality among yourselves, and become judges with evil thoughts?
 2:5.  Listen, my beloved brethren: Has God not chosen the poor of this world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom which He promised to those who love Him?
 2:6.  But you have dishonored the poor man. Do not the rich oppress you and drag you into the courts?
 2:7.  Do they not blaspheme that noble name by which you are called?
 2:8.  If you really fulfill the royal law according to the Scripture, "You shall love your neighbor as yourself,'' you do well;
 2:9.  but if you show partiality, you commit sin, and are convicted by the law as transgressors.
 2:10.  For whoever shall keep the whole law, and yet stumble in one point, he is guilty of all.
 2:11.  For He who said, "Do not commit adultery,'' also said, "Do not murder.'' Now if you do not commit adultery, but you do murder, you have become a transgressor of the law.
 2:12.  So speak and so do as those who will be judged by the law of liberty.

Be Impartial and Fair.

What is it about people who are rich that atract people to them? The general thought is that they must be doing something right. Maybe getting close to them will make some of what they have rub off on us. It's time to get re-focused on God. Romans 3:23. For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. All, both rich and poor have sinned. All need to hear the good news of the Gospel.

Remember this: John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believes in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. The gift of Jesus is for everybody, the world, whosoever. Try to see people as God sees them. The poor person may need cleaning up on the outside. That's really easy. All it takes is a little soap and water. Both the rich and poor person need to be washed in the soul. Not so easy for us to do. In fact nobody can except Jesus. Don't hold anybody back.

The rest of this passage tries to demonstrate that all people, despite what they say or think, really do have sin. Here's a comparison. Think of a balloon that is full of air. All it takes to pop it is one little stick with a pinpoint. The whole balloon is broken. Keeping the commandments is like that. Break even one little one, and the integrity of the whole thing is broke.

Everybody needs a spiritual cleaning. Treat each other with the same, high level of respect. Bring them all the good word, and let Jesus offer his cleaning to them.

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