They said to him, “You see, brother, how many thousands there are among the Jews of those who have believed, and they are all zealous for the Law, and they have been told about you, that you are teaching all the Jews who are among the Gentiles to forsake Moses, telling them not to circumcise their children nor to walk according to the customs. What, then, is to be done?”
— Acts 21:20b-22a
I have read that James had calluses on his knees from all the time he spent kneeling in prayer. Eventually this pious brother was even martyred. James saw the early days in the church in Jerusalem, when Peter could say, “Silver and gold I do not possess, but what I have, this I give to you: In the name of Jesus Christ the Nazarene rise up and walk” (Acts 3:6).
Peter’s boldness was in the name of Jesus alone, yet during the ministry of James, the churches under his care seemed to shift their focus from life back to the law. Because of this, many were chased out of the church life, and many who remained in the church lost Christ as their focus. Years later, when Paul arrived in Jerusalem, those with James told Paul to look and see how many thousands were zealous for the law of Moses (Acts 21:20). Paul was in the heavenlies, and he stood firmly for Christ alone, but James caused the saints to return to the earthly religion.Ã‚Â James came to stand for Christ plus the law.
We need to realize that the holy manner of life, which the Lord seeks for us, comes from Christ alone. In the churches we must be careful to maintain our stand for Christ and Christ alone, and never allow any “plus” (as in “Christ plus something else”) to come in to defraud us of the divine stream.
Adapted from The Reality of the Divine Stream, pages 60-61.
Tomorrow: “The Unique Flow from the Throne”