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? - James 2:2-4
James is addressing the obvious differences in the rich and poor people, and how people judge based those outward appearances, but I believe he is making a broader statement about how we treat people who are different than us.
To show favoritism to people based on outward appearance is wickedness, and something that plagues a human heart no matter who you are. The reality is we prefer people who look like us and think like us. These are the people we are most comfortable around, these are the people we most easily trust. It takes intentional effort to gather with people different than yourself. Take a moment to think about the people you consider to be close in your life - is there diversity?
The harsh truth is that the sin of partiality has its root in pride. Most people think the way they look, the way they think, the things they do are best. Just look at how we correct others, or judge those who don’t do it like us. That sin is pride.
This sin of partiality permeates the local church. You can walk into most local church bodies and find a homogenous group of people. Unless that church is intentionally seeking diversity, the church body is generally made up of similar people.
We know from scripture that there should be no distinctions in the church body. Here there is not Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave, free; but Christ is all, and in all. - Colossians 3:11. We are all children of God and should treat one another as such. A church that is truly glorifying God should be made up of people of all ages, races, and economic status. The one thing that unifies all of us should be our love and submission to Jesus Christ as Savior.
Press on ~ you are loved 💗
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