After issuing a warning and probing the heart of the teacher, James addresses the subject that ordinarily attends a teacher—knowledge. Immediately, however, he places it in the larger context. Both the possession and the product of wisdom must be kept in view. So he exhorts that the wise person must utilize his resources to fashion a beautiful life (v. 13). This will happen through enlightened self-restraint (the humility that comes from wisdom,v. 13). The wisdom of Christian faith always has something to do with the ordering of an exemplary life.
James calls attention to the presence of wrong attitudes among would-be teachers. “If [since] you harbor bitter envy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast [stop boasting] about it or deny [stop denying] the truth” (v. 14). These attitudes proceed from a depraved, this-worldly, unholy spirit. They are self-centered and will ultimately create disorder in the community. But when the divine Spirit invades a person, he cleanses the heart and enables him to subordinate the natural drives and to choose that course of action that will promote peace.
This table of virtues given here describes the person who resists the temptation to exalt himself and to exult over the failures of others. When this kind of wisdom is operative, God is in process of fashioning a harmonious, holy community that manifests his perfect design.
Step 1 - Create an account or log in to start your free trial.
Starting your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus is easy. You’re already logged in with your Bible Gateway account. The next step is to enter your payment information. Your credit card won’t be charged until the trial period is over. You can cancel anytime during the trial period.
Click the button below to continue.
Step 1 - Create an account or log in to start your subscription.
You’ve already claimed your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus. To subscribe at our regular subscription rate of $3.99/month, click the button below.
Now that you've created a Bible Gateway account, upgrade to Bible Gateway Plus, the ultimate online Bible reading & study experience!
Bible Gateway Plus equips you to answer the toughest questions about faith, God, and the Bible. There's no software to install; it's all integrated seamlessly into your Bible Gateway experience. Try it free for 30 days!