James 1:1“This letter is from James, a slave of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ. I am writing to the twelve tribes—Jewish believers scatted abroad. Greetings!” James 1:1
James became one of the prominent leaders among the Christians in Jerusalem. While other Jewish Christians scattered to escape persecution, James remained to help lead the church there. Now he begins his letter by identifying himself as a bondservant, from the Greek word duolos, also meaning "slave," of both God and of Jesus Christ. He doesn't mention his unique family relationship to Jesus, only his role as Jesus' servant. James' letter is written to all the scattered Jewish Christians, referred to as "the Dispersion."
If you were to choose, one identity for yourself, what would it be? Would it be Husband, Father, Wife, Mother, Single, Divorced, Widowed? Would you choose to be identified by your profession? Teacher, Accountant, Doctor, Engineer, Carpenter? Would you choose to be identified by your race? How about your sexuality? Or would you choose to be identified as James chose, a slave of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ even though he could have chosen to be identified as Jesus’ brother? It is important for us as believers to realize that the greatest identity we can have is our identity “in Christ.” When we realize who we are “in Christ,” we will have the confidence to live in a chaotic world with hope, joy, and peace.
“If your identity is found in Christ, then it matters less and less what people think of you.” Leonard Sweet
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