This passage raises a lot of interesting questions.
1) What kind of wisdom is James talking about?
2) Why would anyone ask for wisdom?
3) is it reasonable to say that you won’t get any wisdom from God if you have any doubts?
4) What kinds of doubts is James talking about?
5) If you have doubts, will you really not get ANYTHING from the Lord?
6) what is a double minded man?
7) How is he unstable in all his ways?
This passage clearly needs some explanation because it is ripe for misuse and misunsderstanding. First, we need to look at the context. This passage takes place after Acts 8:1. ”…And on that day a great persecution began against the church inJerusalemand they were all scattered throughout the regions of Judea andSamariaexcept the apostles.”
James writes this letter to the 12 tribes who are dispersed abroad. At this time, the church is still almost exclusively Jewish. Phillip has not gone toSamaria, the Ethopian unuch has not been baptized. Paul has not been converted. Peter has not preached to Cornelius.
But now, persecution has begun.
James has just been telling his readers his persecution, trial, and troubles are good when he gets to this passage.
(originally published June 24, 2012)