Wednesday, July 1, 2009

In His Word Wednesday- Partiality

James 2:1-9 My brethren, do not hold the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of Glory with partiality. 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, 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," have you not shown partiality among yourselves, and become judges with evil thoughts? Listen my beloved brethren: Has God not chosen the poor of this world to be rich in faith and heirs of kingdom which He promised to those who love Him? But you have dishonored the poor man. Do not the rich oppress you and drag you into the courts? Do they not blaspheme that noble name by which you are called? If you really fulfill the royal law according to the Scripture, "You shall love your neighbor as yourself," you do well: but if you show partiality, you commit sin, and are convicted by the law as transgressors.

I read these verses this morning, and I couldn't help but think of what is going on in this country in recent weeks. It made me think of Jon and Kate. It reminded me of what we watched last night about Michael Jackson. Celebrity is a powerful thing in this world. If you can act, or sing or play a sport well, you become a celebrity, and you make LOTS of money. I would say that the world most definitely shows partiality to celebrities. To the point where they completely ignore the negative things that the person has done, and will fill the streets in anguish over the death of that person, even though they never met them! Partiality to the rich, wealthy, and talented is definitely prevalent in our country (and all over the World). But, we as Christians are called to be set apart from this we show the same partiality? Do we show preference for someone who is on TV, or the richer, or more well known members of our church congregation? We can see from the verses above, that this is not pleasing to God. God wants us to treat all people with love and concern, and to give the poor the same attention ( and perhaps more attention) then the rich! This obviously goes against what our World teaches us in our example!

My thoughts go back to Jon and Kate. Jon and Kate are a good example to me of the fact that Jesus told us that the love of money is the root of all evil. No, not money itself, but the love of money. I don't believe that when Jon and Kate started out, it was all about the money. But, it does seem to me that at some point, they crossed over. The love of fame and money took over.

I had only seen the show a couple of times (we don't have cable), but everyone I know would talk about the show, especially Christian women. So many people watched them religiously, and would never miss an episode. They became stars, and they were becoming very rich. It was this partiality, that, I believe, destroyed their marriage. This modest, Christian family, couldn't handle the stardom, and everything that went along with it. Now, am I saying that it was our showing partiality to them, that caused their downfall...not exactly. They still made their choices, and I believe that could have recognized that they were sinking, long before they sank, and pulled the plug. However, the fact that so many brothers and sisters in Christ chose to follow their every move, and give them some kind of extra grace in their downfallls, that may have contributed to their pride, and inability to handle their fame. Just a thought.

So, lets propose together, to not show partiality. Let's love all men the same, rich or poor, "celebrity", or common man. Everyone needs our love and compassion. We need to spend more time serving the poor man, than worshiping the wealthy, and popular. If there is a wealthy, or popular Christian, than it is still our job to admonish them in the sin we see in their lives, in love. As much as we would the average person sitting in our church congregation.

God doesn't like partiality, and as we are called to be set apart from the world, maybe we should think about how we can keep from displeasing God in this way. If you have any further thoughts about this, I would love to hear them, and please join Megan today for more In His Word Wednesday.

1 comment:

  1. Great Thoughts Elizabeth! Partiality seems to be the natural human thing to do. We need to remember what the Bible says!

    Thanks for linking