Theme: COMMENTARY ON JAMES CHAPTERS 1 – 2
Text: “Let the brother of low degree rejoice in that he is exalted: But the rich, in that he is made low: because as the flower of the grass he shall pass away. For the sun is no sooner risen with a burning heat, but it withereth the grass, and the flower thereof falleth, and the grace of the fashion of it perisheth: so also shall the rich man fade away in his ways.” – James 1:9-11.
Comment: The rich St. James is condemning in this text are those who are materially well-off but have no fear of God. The fact is that those who are materially poor or who are seen in that light are usually not reckoned with and their opinions are not sought or taken seriously when issues arise. In fact their presence is only endured in certain gatherings. This makes such ones feel rejected. But God Almighty seeth not as man seeth and is no respecter of persons. (1 Samuel 16:7; Acts 10:34,35) For one thing, the poor are humble and so are better disposed to obeying the commandments of God as against the rich who are proud, answer roughly and are likely to have little or no regard for God or man. (Proverbs 18:23; Luke 18:2,4) Also riches entice one to trust in them rather than in God, which is idolatry, and pushes one into lusts and ungodly desires which ensnare the soul. (Luke 12:15-21;1 Timothy 6:9,10) Those who are poor but who practise the righteousness of God will certainly inherit all things. (Psalm 113:7,8; 1 Samuel 2:8) However, since some of those who are materially poor are wicked, it is the spiritual poverty that God requires from His worshippers. “But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the LORD which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the LORD.” – Jeremiah 9:24.