James 2:8-13. We all shall be under the law of liberty; the law of Spirit; it is by Mercy.

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1. Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.

Our last study was about that God is not a respecter of persons and so, we must also have no partiality toward our brethren, who are our neighbors. "James 2:8 says, If ye fulfil the royal law according to the scripture, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself, ye do well:" Apostle James says that if we obey God, we will not show partiality to our brethren. Brethren does not refer to blood brothers, but to brothers and sisters in Christ. Now, Christianity has turned to worship another Jesus very quietly, in such a manner that we do not even know it. This another Jesus does not give any commands, and he will not condemn sin. He is very eager to forgive our sins, as soon as we commit them, or rather even before we commit them. That is, preachers even say that he forgives past, present, and future sins; that is, he has given permission to live in sins. So, practically Christians do not have the laws of God to obey. But the true Jesus Christ is for the laws, and he tells us to obey his commands. This verse says that this law is royal, which is kingly and majestic, and it is according to scripture. Jesus Christ condensed all his commands into two and says both are equal. The second law is referred here; it is, "Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself." One guy asked Jesus Christ in "Matthew 22:36 Master, which is the great commandment in the law? 37 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. 38 This is the first and great commandment. 39 And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. 40 On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets." So, theoretically it is two commands, but when we do them in our life, we cannot do one without fulfilling the other. So, in practice, both are merged as one. "Galatians 5:14 says For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself." In our study, it says we must love our neighbor as ourselves, without any partiality. If you like to study more about the commandments and laws, please refer to this link: "Laws, Commandments."

2. Partiality among brethren is committing sin.

"9 But if ye have respect to persons, ye commit sin, and are convinced of the law as transgressors." Respect to persons is to show partiality, and we studied it in our last lesson in detail. If we show partiality among brethren, we have committed sin, because it is sin. The next portion of the verse says that we "are convinced of the law as transgressors." God has given everybody conscience. If we listen to our own conscience, we will know that it is sin. Let us see a scripture passage to make us understand this. In John 8:1-11 we see an incident that a crowd brought a woman, whom they found committing adultery, to Jesus Christ. They want to stone her to death. Jesus told them, "7 ... He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her. 8 And again he stooped down, and wrote on the ground. 9 And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last: and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst." See, there was not a big argument. Jesus Christ has convicted them with their conscience. And they were convinced that they were also sinners as she, and so, they were not in a position to judge her. They left her alone. If we have good conscience, this is the same thing that the law of Jesus will do. That is why "Romans 7:12 says, Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good", if we have good conscience. The end of the verse calls the sinners as transgressors. "1 John 3:4 also says, Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law." So, be good in heart, be kind to others, and do not have bias; that is, do not be partial. If so, you will be one with God.

3. Offend one point in the whole law; in this context.

"10 For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all. 11 For he that said, Do not commit adultery, said also, Do not kill. Now if thou commit no adultery, yet if thou kill, thou art become a transgressor of the law." This verse is often used by the enemies of the gospel and so, most Christians would have heard this verse. Christians do not know what breed they belong to. Everybody thinks of themselves as true Christians. But most of us are social, traditional, denominational, or/and religious. Everybody says that they follow the word of God; except Catholics; now even Catholics have bible studies and beginning to claim that they also are knowledgeable in the word of God. But no one knows the truth from the bible, but they all know their own twists. Say, a five percent (5%) of Christians may know the truth from the bible; and even they may not even follow the truth in their life. So, 95% of Christians follow nominal Christianity, and less than 5% may know the truth of God. If just one percent follow Christ, I think it will be great. Anyway, let us see how verse 10 is taught. It is like this; even if you sweat to live a perfect life, if you make a single error, then all is wasted. If it is the case, why sweat? It is no use. So, quit trying to live a holy life, ask God to take you to heaven by his grace and mercy; then life will be so easy, and you will be in heaven. That is, they say that it is impossible to live a holy life, and at the same time there is another easy way to heaven. So, they tell us to forget the whole law, fall on the free ticket that is grace, and it is a guarantee to heaven. But it is deception of Satan. I have a few lessons on this. So, let me give two links: "Grace", "Salvation."

Let us look at this verse in its context. We must know that God is not a respecter of persons; and so, he wants us to treat everybody in our fellowship, not with partiality, but with respect. This is a personal advice; but neither a topic to discuss in the world stage, nor a philosophy that we all must agree upon with our society either. Will you or will you not, respect everybody equally in your fellowship where you worship God? This is the context. But false preachers pull such verses out of their context to teach, and let God take care of them. Now, look at the verse; it is a personal advice to a church. If you think that you are a godly person, this is a simple test for you. Do you respect the rich and the poor equally, or do you respect the people of status more? If you are partial, all your godly claims are in vain, because you could not even keep a simple point. This is the context; it is to respect all equally. But preachers twist this verse also as they twist all other verses, according to the advice of Satan.

4. They shall be judged by the law of liberty.

"12 So speak ye, and so do, as they that shall be judged by the law of liberty." Preachers must teach the word of God in truth by rightly dividing it as God reveals to them. James 1:25 also says that "whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, ... shall be blessed in his deed." Christians misunderstand the law of liberty. They think that they are free to do sin, since they are at liberty to do them, because Jesus died for them. But the law of liberty is the law of the Spirit. Please pay attention! It is the holy Spirit, who has the liberty, but not us. We must live by the guidance of the holy Spirit. You were a man of flesh; your liberty in the flesh is crushed and put to death by your own Spirit; and by your own will. "Romans 8:1 There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. 2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death." Those who live by the law of the Spirit, which is the law of liberty, are not under the law of 'sin and death'. Romans 7:22&23, say that we all know the law of liberty in our minds; but if we let the flesh takeover; the law of sin will automatically take over us. So, we must be under the holy Spirit, for us to be under the law of the Spirit, which is the law of liberty, which is perfect. In "John 8:31 Jesus said to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed;" Romans 11:22 and 1 Timothy 4:16 say, that we must continue in his goodness, to be saved; or else, we will be cut off. So, we must continue in the law of liberty, which is the law of the Spirit to go to heaven, and to inherit the kingdom of God.

5. Show mercy; Mercy rejoice against judgment.

"13 For he shall have judgment without mercy, that hath showed no mercy; and mercy rejoiceth against judgment." We all wish that God will show mercy to us. Preachers say that God has unconditional love; but it is the lie of the devil. We just saw that God is not a respecter of persons. What we do, we will reap. So, God has a condition for mercy also. Jesus Christ says in "Matthew 5:7, Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy." So, if we show mercy to others in life, God will show mercy to us in our judgment. If we do not, we will also will not have mercy of God in our judgment. Jesus Christ told us two parables to explain this to us. One is in Matthew 18:23-35 and the other is in Matthew 25:31-46.

Let us see the first: "Matthew 18:23 Therefore is the kingdom of heaven likened unto a certain king, which would take account of his servants. 24 And when he had begun to reckon, one was brought unto him, which owed him ten thousand talents. 25 But forasmuch as he had not to pay, his lord commanded him to be sold, and his wife, and children, and all that he had, and payment to be made. 26 The servant therefore fell down, and worshipped him, saying, Lord, have patience with me, and I will pay thee all. 27 Then the lord of that servant was moved with compassion, and loosed him, and forgave him the debt. 28 But the same servant went out, and found one of his fellowservants, which owed him an hundred pence: and he laid hands on him, and took him by the throat, saying, Pay me that thou owest." Jesus Christ talks about a king, who is symbolic of God. A servant of him, owes a large sum of money. The king ordered to collect the debt, by even selling all that he has, including his wife and children. The servant wept and cried to the king, begging him to have mercy. The king got compassion on him, and he forgave all his debts; that is, now the man is debt free. The parable does not end here. Some other man owed a very small amount of money to this servant. And this servant took that man to jail for collecting the debt. "29 And his fellowservant fell down at his feet, and besought him, saying, Have patience with me, and I will pay thee all. 30 And he would not: but went and cast him into prison, till he should pay the debt. 31 So when his fellowservants saw what was done, they were very sorry, and came and told unto their lord all that was done. 32 Then his lord, after that he had called him, said unto him, O thou wicked servant, I forgave thee all that debt, because thou desiredst me: 33 Shouldest not thou also have had compassion on thy fellowservant, even as I had pity on thee? 34 And his lord was wroth, and delivered him to the tormentors, till he should pay all that was due unto him." This is the parable. Then Jesus told them, "35 So likewise shall my heavenly Father do also unto you, if ye from your hearts forgive not every one his brother their trespasses." Please notice two things here. 1, God says that he forgave all your big sins, why don't you forgive little things to your fellow brethren? (A caution here, let not ungodly people exploit you using this verse, and tell you to let the criminals go free. The context here is that this man is a fellow brethren, who owe a little money. But he is not a wicked criminal.) 2, God once forgave, he was saved; then God revoked his debt back; that is, once saved not always saved. So, reverence God always until the end; then only you will be saved.

Let us see the second: "Matthew 25:31 When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory: 32 And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats: 33 And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left. 34 Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: 35 For I was an hungered, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: 36 Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me. 37 Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungered, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink? 38 When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee? 39 Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee? 40 And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me. 41 Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels: 42 For I was an hungered, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink: 43 I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not. 44 Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungered, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee? 45 Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me. 46 And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal." This is about how the Lord Jesus Christ will judge the world. The world will be divided into two groups, not as Christians and non-Christians, but as the righteous and the unrighteous. Jesus said that the righteous people helped him when he was in need. They asked him when and how did it happen? "37 Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungered, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink? 38 When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee? 39 Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee? 40 And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me." In this context, the righteous are defined as those who did help the least of these my brethren; they were the poor servants of Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ did not tell this parable for the church to establish social security system, as preachers interpret. Christian missionaries do such help as misguided ships. But Jesus Christ is mindful of the brethren among brethren, to respect each other without partiality, and especially to honor and to take care of those who follow and serve him. So, always be mindful of the least servants of the Lord Jesus Christ. Even poor brethren in the Lord, deserve respect.

If any point needs explanation, OR, if you find an error according to scripture,
Please write to me in the 'Mail Box' below. I will respond promptly.
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I am a retired pastor of the Church of God (Tennessee).
My name is Isaac Livingston. I am from Neyyoor India
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