Continuing our walk through the book of James…
In this passage we see James warning us of judging against other believers. That we are to not slander or focus on those struggles because if we begin to define people by their struggles, we fall into the prideful position of judging them. When we take away their identity in the salvation of Jesus, and instead identify by their sins, we are in a wrong position. But instead we are to walk with them in the truth of the salvation, mercy, and grace provided by God through Jesus.
But there is only one Lawgiver and Judge. When we judge, we are taking a position reserved by God. We don’t actually have any power in judgement, but we try to wield it as if we do. But all we do is let our own sinful pride to violate God’s laws. But humility will keep us from trying to judge others, and instead live life with others with love.
This doesn’t mean that we ignore struggles or sin, or gives us permission to re-define sin, but it means that we don’t hold that sin against others. We are to live together boosting and helping one another.
11 Do not speak evil against one another, brothers. The one who speaks against a brother or judges his brother, speaks evil against the law and judges the law. But if you judge the law, you are not a doer of the law but a judge. (ESV)
12 There is only one lawgiver and judge, he who is able to save and to destroy. But who are you to judge your neighbor? (ESV)