Theological in nature
"Sarcasm and a Prostitute"
So, we left verse nineteen with a harsh sarcastic rush. As we move on to verse twenty, the sarcasm reachs peak. The 'believer in monotheism' is now addressed as an empty fool. The Greek 'de' makes a sharp contrast and connection with the preceding verse, as in 'But, does an empty fool like you really want to know...'. James is still just a tad angry here.
The word for 'foolish' is 'kene' and really means 'empty'. You have an empty headed
"Faith and Love"
We are now entering the last part of chapter two. It is important to realize that they are all on the same page, they are dealing with the problem of partiality, of favoring the rich over the poor. This is going to excess in the way they speak and overtly treat those who come to the worship service. This probably extends into their everyday life. The differences in socal status are reflected in so much of what the early society among the Gentiles was all
"So Live and So Act..."
Up to this point, James has built an extensive view of what it is all about and how it was to answer some questionable activites whithin the Body of Believers. He started with the true character of Joy and Perseverance. Wisdom was to be given for the asking, and strong growth was the way of faith for the believers. For those who persevered, the blessing was promised twice in chapter one verses twelve and twenty-five. It is the one who:
"The Royal Law of Love"
If you step back at look at the structure of chapter two, it seems to fall into five parts, all inter-related. We must keep in mind that the over riding theme is the perseverance of faith under fire that was developed in the first chapter. In chapter two, it is the them of love and following the Royal law of Love that is developed here.
The first part of chapter two is contains the first four verses. It sets forth the practice, and outlines
"The Power of Love, Impartially"
In Ephesians 5 verse one we are commanded to 'Be imitators of God'. It is God who loves all men and wishes them to be saved. This being true, it is dishonoring God to show overweaning impartiality to anyone group of people at the expense of another. This was being practiced in the church among the people that James was instructing in his letter. At that time, there was no 'middle class', just poor of well off. The vast majority muddled along in