Monday, December 01, 2008

James 2:8-13- The Sin of Partiality: Part 2

James 2:8-13- The Sin of Partiality: Part 2- Loving God More Than Men Leads to True Fruit

I.                   True love does not show partiality (v. 8-9).

A.    The royal law according to The Scripture:  James is equating the commands of Christ as a command of authority or kingly law

1.      Love = agape

2.      Partiality = schism, division, favor

a.       In the Jewish mind, the highest authority was the king: in this case the one who had the right to rule the Davidic throne.

b.      James plays off of this and even though Jesus isn’t yet ruling on that throne (He is, however, seated at the right hand of God), he claims Jesus’ teachings are from the highest authority: The Holy Anointed One (Messiah) who has the right to rule on the Davidic throne.

B.     The command itself does not show partiality.

1.      If we love others AS ourselves, we do not show partiality even to ourselves, let alone to others around us.

2.      It’s all about motivation.  Why do we “love” those around us (speaking of love as an action, not a feeling)?

C.     When we fail to follow this law (which is the second greatest commandment in all of Scripture), we are guilty of sin.

 II.                True love exalts and obeys Christ (v. 10-13).

A.    Whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles in one point

1.      This was to show them that though they weren’t stealing, lying, or perhaps even murdering, they were still in sin because they failed to keep the overlying principle that resulted in those parts of The Ten Commandments: Love one another as God loves you (v. 10-11).

2.      The point here is this: if you can’t keep part of the second greatest commandment, then how is it that we can claim that we’re keeping the first: To love the Lord our God with all our hearts, with all our souls, and with all our minds?

B.     We are no longer judged by The Law of Sin, but by The Law of Liberty, or freedom (v. 12).  Though we do have the liberty in Christ to sin, why would we want to sin against each other when we know:

1.      The pain it caused Christ to suffer it for us?

2.      That we are bringing ourselves back as a slave to The Law that Christ freed us from?

C.     If we truly believe and love, then we will obey and do (v. 12-13)

D.    Consider this thought: if it was truly best for us to judge one another based upon appearance, then why doesn’t Christ do the same to us based upon our spiritual appearance?  Why is it that He shows mercy if condemnation is the best answer?  That’s because in God’s Plan, though condemnation is the correct answer, mercy and grace are better answers.  Like the verse says, “Mercy triumphs over (or boasts against) judgment.”


1)      Are we loving each other as God would want us to?

2)      Are we so caught in our own legalism that we’ve forgotten who we really are?

3)      Does mercy triumph over judgment in our lives?

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