Notice James claims that the wisdom that comes from God is – yes, “chiefly” pure, but it is also peaceful and uncensorious. Someone who is censorious is highly fault-finding, super critical and apt to accuse the other. James says this is not a part of the wisdom of God. Instead the wise Christian is “courteous” and “always ready to be convinced!” In other words, willing to listen to the opposing arguments! including those which are blasphemous. Wisdom is not finger-pointing and back-biting (or stabbing). “Peace is the seed-ground of holiness.” Read that again! “Peace is the seed-ground of holiness.” Jesus says, “Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall see the kingdom of God.”
Whereas the wisdom which does come from above is marked chiefly indeed by its purity, but also by its peacefulness; it is courteous and ready to be convinced, always taking the better part; it carries mercy with it, and a harvest of all that is good; it is uncensorious, and without affectation. Peace is the seed-ground of holiness, and those who make peace will win its harvest. James 3:17-18 KNOX
Just ordered second proof of THE EIGHT-FOOT BOY.
Growing up is what God expects us to do. He commands us to “follow the Truth” – that is, Christ; but He expects us to follow the truth, “in a spirit of charity” – not lording over others in a spirit of one-upmanship. We are called to a “due proportion” with Christ in everything. He is our Head; we are only members of His Body. Who then are we to say to others, “I am better or more needed than you.”? Or, “You are of no value?”
We are to follow the truth, in a spirit of charity, and so grow up, in everything, into a due proportion with Christ, who is our head.
Growing up is what’s expected of us.
On [Christ] all the body depends; it is organized and unified by each contact with the source which supplies it; and thus, each limb receiving the active power it needs, it achieves its natural growth, building itself up through charity. (Ephesians 4:16)
In a world promoting the ‘get what you want and get it now’ attitude, Christ’s attitude is mind-numbing and shocking. Christ “took the nature of a slave” despite being “in the rank of Godhead.” He dispossessed Himself of His rightful station and fashioned Himself as a human being. He allowed Himself to die. Paul calls upon Christians to do the same:
Yours is to be the same mind which Christ Jesus shewed. His nature is, from the first, divine, and yet he did not see, in the rank of Godhead, a prize to be coveted; he dispossessed himself, and took the nature of a slave, fashioned in the likeness of men, and presenting himself to us in human form; and then he lowered his own dignity, accepted an obedience which brought him to death, death on a cross.
What prize do we covet?
English: Young Christ as the good shepherd (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
I’ve always loved the image of Jesus as shepherd, carrying the lamb on His shoulders. He’s also the shepherd who puts that lamb in with the others of the flock, then turns to search far and wide for the sheep that wander, the sheep that are lost in a ravine, in a flood, in a deep hole, amongst wolves.
That is what the Son of Man has come for, to search out and to save what was lost.