James chapter 2 gives us some interesting things to think about…especially considering the overarching theme of James is that we mature in Christ. The first 7 verses of James 2 has a tendency to be overlooked, but it calls the church on the carpet when it comes to the sin of favoritism.
“My brothers and sisters, do not show favoritism as you hold on to the faith in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ.”James 2:1
James would then go on to illuminate the practice of many then, and may now, of choosing only those that we desire to be with and around to come have a place in worship, to come and have a place in the presence of Christ. One of the the great tragedies of modern Christianity is our tendency towards cliques and our tendency to not only gather with those who look, act, and think like us, but to only share the Gospel with and invite those familiar people to church.
Spend enough time in any middle school in America and one of the first things that you will notice is…cliques. Cliques are often associated with immaturity because of the lack of depth in the reasoning for them and because they, for some reason, are always in conflict with each other. Replace “middle school” with “church’ in the first sentence of this paragraph. The reality: nothing changes about what is said. And this is what James seeks to tackle in the beginning of chapter 2.
Common response from modern believers – “I am accepting of everyone, and I am not in a clique.”
A proper response from modern believers – “Lord, make me more like Jesus in being loving, accepting, and Gospel forward with everyone, even those who don’t act, think, or talk like I do.”
– Pastor DJ