Keeping the royal law

Yes indeed, it is good when you obey the royal law as found in the Scriptures: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” But if you favor some people over others, you are committing a sin. You are guilty of breaking the law. For the person who keeps all of the laws except one is as guilty as a person who has broken all of God’s laws. For the same God who said, “You must not commit adultery,” also said, “You must not murder.” So if you murder someone but do not commit adultery, you have still broken the law. James 2:8-11 NLT


James from the text, stated the reason why believers should not engage in favoritism. As followers of Christ, we were given a command representing the summary of the Ten Commandments. “‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself’” (Matthew 22:38-39). James stressed the second part of the summary of the commandments, “Love your neighbor as yourself.” This is also what Paul did when he wrote to believers in Rome and Galatia (see Romans 13:9, Galatians 5:14). Obeying the second part of the summary, expressing love for one’s neighbor, is also the same as obeying the first command. This is how we are prevented from falling into the sin of favoritism. God has provided us an example to follow for He cares for both rich and poor. “For God does not show favoritism” (Romans 2:11). This is also the context of the command God gave to the Israelites through Moses in the Old Testament. “Do not twist justice in legal matters by favoring the poor or being partial to the rich and powerful. Always judge people fairly” (Leviticus 19:15). God provided us the capacity to love others through the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit. When we live out our lives based on God’s command, James said that this is commendable in the sight of God. “Yes indeed, it is good when you obey the royal law as found in the Scriptures” (James 2:8). It was referred to as the royal law for it manifests the kingship of God to a believer’s life. James highlighted the serious result when we violate God’s command of loving others. “For the person who keeps all of the laws except one is as guilty as a person who has broken all of God’s laws” (James 2:10). Having real faith in God is demonstrated on how we treat others fairly.


Blessings,


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