#DailyDevotion The Torah Is Fulfilled In This Commandment
James 2:1My brothers, show no partiality as you hold the faith in our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory. 2For if a man wearing a gold ring and fine clothing comes into your assembly, and a poor man in shabby clothing also comes in, 3and if you pay attention to the one who wears the fine clothing and say, “You sit here in a good place,” while you say to the poor man, “You stand over there,” or, “Sit down at my feet,” 4have you not then made distinctions among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts? 5Listen, my beloved brothers, has not God chosen those who are poor in the world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom, which he has promised to those who love him? 6But you have dishonored the poor man. Are not the rich the ones who oppress you, and the ones who drag you into court? 7Are they not the ones who blaspheme the honorable name by which you were called?
8If you really fulfill the royal law according to the Scripture, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself,” you are doing well. 9But if you show partiality, you are committing sin and are convicted by the law as transgressors. 10For whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become accountable for all of it….
Exo 12:49 There shall be one law for the native and for the stranger who sojourns among you.”
Num 15:16 One law and one rule shall be for you and for the stranger who sojourns with you.”
Num 15:29 You shall have one law for him who does anything unintentionally, for him who is native among the people of Israel and for the stranger who sojourns among them.
James is teaching a principle derived from the Old Testament Law, show no partiality. We are to show no partiality in good things or in judgment. Whether someone is rich or poor or in between we are not to treat one person better than another. This is not an easy thing. We all have preferences. But God shows no partiality. He applies the same standards to all. God condemns all alike under the law and he has given a savior for all, his Son Jesus Christ unto death for all.
James points to the royal law, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself” as the fulfillment of the law. Whatever law there may be it is fulfilled when we do this.. Gal 5:14 “For the whole law is fulfilled in one word: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’”If we are showing partiality we are not loving our neighbor as our self for certainly we do not want people to treat us worse than someone else. Now when James says, “whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become accountable for all of it” he is not saying you have broken all the laws but rather we have sinned against the One who gave the law and you are a lawbreaker. God gave the law. Jesus has given us this commandment, “Love your neighbor as yourself.” All breaking of the law sins against the neighbor.
Now we are God’s neighbor. He has loved us as he loved himself. He sent his son Jesus Christ into the world to become one of us and to die for our sin. Jesus suffered the eternal punishment in our place and gives to us freely eternal life. When we have sinned God has given us a way for redemption and forgiveness as a gift. He did this without showing partiality. If you are rich, poor, Jew or Gentile, male or female or whatever distinctions we may want to make he did this for you. He tells us to go and do likewise.
O Father of lights you show no partiality when you sent your son Jesus Christ into the world. Grant us your Holy Spirit that we may do likewise and love our neighbors as ourselves. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.