Judging by external appearance is at the heart of James 2:1-13. But James is not concerned with whether we are nice to people or not. James is raising a more profound question: how are you looking at the world?
God has identified the real problem in our lives and the only solution. But we easily deceive ourselves. The real issue is how are you going to respond to this message? Are you willing to hear God out?
The poor believer will be exalted. The rich unbeliever will be humiliated. It may seem the other way around right now, but if you understand the gospel, it should change your perspective.
Why would the God I’m counting on to me from my sin put me in a position where my faith is under fire? Is James serious about being joyful in the midst of hardships?
Our author introduces himself simply as another sinner saved by grace. Who was James? How did he come to faith? And how do we know which James wrote this letter?
Paul writes his final comments with his own hand to emphasize his message.
It’s easy to discuss “loving our neighbor” in the abstract. It is more difficult to figure out how to apply that to concrete, practical everyday situations.
What sort of freedom is Christian freedom? What does it mean to “walk by the Spirit” or “crucify the flesh”?
No compromise is possible. You either seek salvation by keeping the whole law or by grace through faith in Christ. You can’t mix and match law and grace.
Two sons. Same father, different mothers. Only one inherited the promise.