James 2:1-7 My brothers, show no partiality as you hold the faith in our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory. 2 For if a man wearing a gold ring and fine clothing comes into your assembly, and a poor man in shabby clothing also comes in, 3 and 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,” 4 have you not then made distinctions among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts? 5 Listen, 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? 6 But you have dishonored the poor man. Are not the rich the ones who oppress you, and the ones who drag you into court? 7 Are they not the ones who blaspheme the honorable name by which you were called?
Today, I would like to begin talking for a couple of posts on the sin of partiality. Probably the first question that comes to mind is, “Well, what is partiality?” Partiality is when you show favorites among people or discriminate against people on the basis of either race, age, sex, social status, wealth, or etc. Apparently James was combating this among the people to whom this epistle was written. They had a problem with being extra nice to those who came in wearing gold and fine clothing, but was mean and cruel to those who were poor. He then says “Doesn’t that mean that you are falsely judging them and making distinctions based on outward appearance??” He was rebuking these church members for showing partiality. Apparently these same rich attendees were oppressing them and dragging them to court, so he asked why are you showing favoritism? Why don’t you treat everyone as equal, because that’s how God sees us! Love all including both the poor and rich alike, just don’t show partiality!