Have you been partial to others? Many of us are guilty of being partial in our life when we tend to selectively talk and give importance to few who are like us and who we like among other fellow brothers and sisters. Most of the times the criteria we use is based on social, economic and other outward standards. Does this sound like we are being partial towards others? The fact is in today’s world, we have become insensitive to realize that this is partiality. What is the problem with this? Think about it, If God is partial in his love towards us? what will be our condition based on the standards of God? Thank God for he is impartial. James tells us about the dangers of being partial towards others and how we can be free from this condition.
“1 My brethren, do not hold the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, with partiality. 2 For if there should come into your assembly a man with gold rings, in fine apparel, and there should also come in a poor man in filthy clothes, 3 and you pay attention to the one wearing the fine clothes and say to him, “You sit here in a good place,” and say to the poor man, “You stand there,” or, “Sit here at my footstool,” 4 have you not shown partiality among yourselves, and become judges with evil thoughts?”-James 2:1-4
Did we not give importance to a rich person in churches and gatherings and neglect the poor? As we know and realized, God is not partial. Jesus asked us to love others to the extent of loving our enemies. God causes the sun to rise on the evil and the good and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. He did not show partiality for his love. When we did not know him and not deserving his love, he showed his love through his son Jesus. He gave his son as a sacrifice so that we will be saved. When God showed us such a love and gave the gift of faith. Can we hold the faith with partiality which is a contrast of God’s very character?
If we are a follower of Christ, we must follow his commands and reflect his characters in our life. Is it okay to treat people differently based on economic status, race, language, person’s job, fame, looks and still think that we are the followers. Is it not contradicting of who we follow?
“8 If you really fulfill the royal law according to the Scripture, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself,”you do well; 9 but if you show partiality, you commit sin, and are convicted by the law as transgressors. 10 For whoever shall keep the whole law, and yet stumble in one point, he is guilty of all.13 For judgment is without mercy to the one who has shown no mercy. Mercy triumphs over judgment.”-James 2:8-10,13
Even if we fulfill many of the commands and fail in one, we are breaking them all. If we say we love our neighbor and show partiality. How is it we are fulfilling? When we judge our brothers based on the criteria’s we set, are we not eligible to be judged based on God’s criteria? God gave us mercy so that we give to others and the same will be judging us by what we do with it.
1 John 1:2-3
In today’s world, being partial is not that bad after all. But if you want to follow Christ, it is not not okay to continue in this path. How can we love others without being partial? Jesus said,
“If you love Me, you will keep My commandments.”-John 14:15“
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”- John 13:34-35
If the love of God is filled in us, we will follow his commandments not for the sake of following but with the fullness of our heart, then we will be able to love others as Jesus loved us. Let us humbly come before God and submit to him asking to fill us with his love and enable us to love others without being partial.