Last night, our small Bible study group read James 3:13-18. This morning, my Bible app had James 3:16- “For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice.”
This timing is no accident.
People who make peace will harvest righteousness.
Righteousness is sown when we are sincere, impartial, bear good fruit, are full of mercy, are open to reason, are gentle, peaceable and pure. These things come from above.
If there is disorder and every vile practice, you will find selfish ambition and jealousy.
- The Greek word for disorder implies fighting, instability and restless.
- The ESV Study Bible says this about selfish ambition: “Selfish ambition is a divisive willingness to split the group in order to achieve personal power and prestige.”
Demonic, unspiritual and earthly wisdom is not of God.
One should neither boast of their sin nor deny that it exists. Confess your sin of selfish ambition and bitter jealousy. Your sin is obvious because of the fruit that you bear. Just as an apple tree is known by its fruit, the disorder is on full display. The chaos is in full display.
Your works reveal the origination of your wisdom. If your works are meek, if they are humble, the wisdom is from God.
The truly wise people, the truly understanding ones, demonstrate these good characteristics through their works.
Each person reading this should search their hearts and consider their actions.
If the wisdom that you follow creates chaos and disorder, then your wisdom is not from God. No matter what you say.
Were you pure? Peaceable? Gentle? Open to reason? Full of mercy and good fruits? Impartial and sincere? The answer to those questions is revealed by your harvest, simply look at the fruit.
If we see chaos, disorder and wickedness…the answer is “no.”
If we see order and righteousness, the answer is “yes.”
Jesus died that we might find peace, both with God and man.
If we are truly His, then our actions, choices and desires play out through peacefulness, gentleness, openness to reason, fullness of mercy and good fruits, impartiality and sincerity that comes from above.
If we are not His, then we will make demands. Ultimatums. We will lie, deceive and manipulate.
Fruit takes a while to reveal itself.
The absence of punishment or penalty should not be mistaken for God’s pleasure in our choices.
God’s patience is our opportunity to repent and we should do so while there is still time.