There is only one lawgiver and judge, he who is able to save and to destroy – James 4:12
Scripture reading: James 4:11-12
Yesterday, we discussed that when we humble ourselves, the Lord will exalt us. James goes on to show how we are to live humbly with our brothers and sisters in the Lord. In a family, you can be so at ease with each other that you let evil comments fly, not thinking about how words can hurt. James helps us see that this way of speaking not only hurts others, but speaks evil against the law. The law says you are to love your brother and sister, but if you speak evil against or slander them, you are saying the law does not apply to you in this area. Thereby, you change the law, as if the law was yours to do with how you will. This is why James says there is only one Law-giver and Judge, and He is able to save and to destroy.
This is a warning to us. He who saves lost sinners is also the same One who will destroy those who live in rebellion against God. In living in the joy of salvation as saved sinners, we are to keep this in mind. We are to see that ridiculing or slandering brothers and sisters in the Lord is a wickedness against which we must continually fight.
James goes on to say that we must have this same loving attitude to our neighbors. To do otherwise is to look down on them as judges, forgetting that we have been forgiven by the Judge not because of our goodness but because of His gracious love.
Suggestions for prayer
That we would be able to speak to everyone, including brothers and sisters, out of care and concern for their well-being.
Pastor Richard Bultje is a United Reformed missionary and pastor in the River of Life church plant in Niagara Falls, Ontario. Pastor Richard and his wife, Yukyung moved to Niagara Falls in November 2012 with their three children Calvin, Isaiah and Gloria. This daily devotional is also available in a print edition you can buy at Nearer to God Devotional.