James 2:1 “My brothers, show no partiality as you hold the faith in our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory.”
James wrote this letter to a group of people who showed much partiality depending on another person’s ethnicity, wealth status, religious background, etc. What is partiality? It is also known as judgement, prejudice, favoritism, unfairness. Does that sound familiar at all? When we discussed this chapter in our LifeGroup last week, I felt a little sting of conviction that I am guilty of this. It may not seem noticeable or outwardly recognized even. Being judgmental in my heart, though? Being critical of someone’s appearance or behavior because it might be different than my own? Having a negative attitude toward someone because their passions and priorities alter from mine? But as a follower of Christ, James is telling us to show NO partiality to anyone as I am claiming to have faith in God. Jesus came to break down these partialities and walls of division. He came to bring unity to God’s people. Showing partiality is ignoring the fact that each human is made in the image of God and loved dearly by him. When I remember that simple truth, it changes my skewed vision of seeing another person as “faulty” to a person who is known and loved by God, created to worship and glorify Him, just as I am. He reminds us later in verse 8, that we are doing well to “love our neighbor as ourselves” or otherwise we are committing sin. I want to take this to heart as I practice this truth each day. Can I see people the way God sees them? Can I love them at their core because God loves them and calls me to do the same? When I mess up, I will confess my sin to God and turn to Him for help in how to love. He is the one who can give us the ability to do that because He truly shows no partiality.