Read: James 2:1-4 Memorize: James 2:1 Pastor Josh September 24-30, 2015
James starts off chapter 2 by saying "My Brethren, have not the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, with respect of person." He starts out talking to his brethren or christians. In order to be saved you must first confess that you are a sinner (Romans 3:23). In all of us being sinners we are no one person better than the other. This is what James is expressing here by talking about "with respect of person". Ever compared yourself against someone else? "I'm not as bad as her", "I don't do what they do", these are all, as James talks about as evil in verse 4.
Verse two he begins a comparison between a rich man and poor man. "For if there come unto your assembly a man with a gold ring, in goodly apparel, and there come in also a poor man in vile raiment;" You ever judged someone by the way they look? Maybe there's someone who is not able to have things that you do, yet do you look down at them or treat them differently? We all would have to admit that we are or have been guilty of doing this at times. James is trying to get across a point though, that God is not a respector of people. Think if God only chose to save certain people because of the way they looked. Would you have been saved? Would you have been "accepted" because of how you looked?
Verse three "And ye have respect to him that weareth the gay clothing, and say unto him. Sit thou here in a good place: and say to the poor, Stand thou there, or sit here under my footstool." This verse shows us how rude we can be to others. We treat people based on their looks, or their actions. Ever heard the "Golen Rule"? Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. In other words treat others based on how you want to be treated. Not a bad ided! But not a rule we all abide by. Life would be so much nicer if we all treated each other not based on their looks, but based on ho we want to be treated.
"Are ye not then partial in yourselves, and are become judges of evil thoughts?" This is what he describes judging other people this way as evil thinking. God, a loving God, who doesn't want anyone to die and go to hell, died for the entire world. John 3:16, "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in him, should not perish, but have everlasting life." Now God could have said at any point, my son is better than you, he's not dying for you, but he didn't do that. He said that whosoever believeth, he left the choice up to us to accept him. Praise the Lord he doesn't love us based on our looks.
What can we learn from this? Don't judge people based on their looks. Accept them as God accepts them, just as they are. Remember, God didn't save you based on your looks, but because he loved you.