James 2:1-13 (KJV) “My brethren, have not the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, with respect of persons. 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; 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:Are ye not then partial in yourselves, and are become judges of evil thoughts? Hearken, my beloved brethren, Hath not God chosen the poor of this world rich in faith, and heirs of the kingdom which he hath promised to them that love him? But ye have despised the poor. Do not rich men oppress you, and draw you before the judgment seats? Do not they blaspheme that worthy name by the which ye are called? If ye fulfil the royal law according to the scripture, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself, ye do well: But if ye have respect to persons, ye commit sin, and are convinced of the law as transgressors. For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all. For he that said, Do not commit adultery, said also, Do not kill. Now if thou commit no adultery, yet if thou kill, thou art become a transgressor of the law. So speak ye, and so do, as they that shall be judged by the law of liberty. For he shall have judgment without mercy, that hath shewed no mercy; and mercy rejoiceth against judgment.”
This devotion begins a new section of James one that shows the trials and temptations placed before all believers. The first James shows is the temptation of partiality.
This is not showing of partiality to believers as much as to the lost. Every four years none believing politicians come to church to be seen or even seek an opportunity to speak. In most churches these men and woman are given places to sit on the platform and opportunities to introduce themselves. After the service they stand with the Pastor to greet all in attendance. After winning the election they will not be heard from for the next four years.
At the same service let a dirty smelly homeless person even try to enter the door. If they are fortunate enough to get past the ushers, they then must find a place to sit and no one will ask them to sit with them because there is an important person in church today and we do not want to be associated with common people. This person will probably never return.
The church has set themselves up as judge of these individuals saying who is worthy in the eyes of God. The poor person deserves the same recognition as the rich. Yet we have the tendency to have more respect for the rich man. Even though they will mistreat us and cause more problems in our lives.