Chuck Foreman – Teaching Pastor
James makes a connection between a couple of virtuous character traits that I don’t think we commonly make. He also points out that these two important character traits are linked to the 2nd greatest commandment, which James calls The Royal Law, “Love your neighbor as yourself.” The more I’ve thought about these two character issues, as well as my own experience when I lacked them myself and desperately needed them from others, the more I see where James is coming from.
James builds the case well for the fact that impartiality and mercy are inseparably linked. They are “joined at the hip,” so to speak, with the Royal Law found in scripture, “Love your neighbor as yourself.” Learning to really love others will demand our impartiality toward whose who are not like us and our willingness to be merciful toward them will demonstrate our impartiality, or not. In this message I shared a story about something I did once that was inexcusable. It revealed a level of partiality and a lack of mercy in me that I am not proud of and that needed to change. Because of what I had done, I felt in desperate need of mercy. When I received mercy from the person I had offended, I felt first-hand, what James says is true here in our text, “Mercy triumphs over judgement.” I’m so happy this is true. May I, may we all, be impartial and merciful. We serve an impartial and merciful God. So must we be as his children.