• Michael Haldas

Partiality


“The Apostle James is intensely concerned with the vice of partiality (see James 2 verses 1, 4, and 9). But what, exactly, is this partiality he warns against? The New Testament Greek word translated into English as partiality is formed from the word lambano – “to take in hand,” “receive,” or “recognize” – combined with the word prosopon, which means “person.” According to Metropolitan John Zizioulas, in Greek culture prosopon came “to be identified . . . quickly with the mask, prosopeion, which was used in the theater.” So close was the association between the two words that they became synonyms. Thus, “in the ancient Hellenic world for someone to ‘be a person’ meant that he had something added to his being.” Prosopon thus implies a person’s outward features or characteristics. The New Testament writers, including Saint James, were drawn to this word when expressing the vice of showing “favoritism with respect to distinguishing features or external appearance” – that is, partiality.” (Dynamis 12/28/2018)

“One of the almost universal traits that we all share in common is the tendency to show partiality in our judgments of others. It almost comes naturally to us.” (Fr. Andrew Demotses)

“God is not partial to anyone… Favoring the rich over the poor is contrary to true faith. A person's dignity and worth come from God, not from fellow humans. So we must not judge others by the earthly standards of rank, wealth, attainments, and appearance.” (Orthodox Study Bible, James 2:1-4, 5-7)

“Starting early in the Old Testament and through to the end of the New Testament are repeated warnings to not show partiality to others, and that God Himself is impartial in His love for all. Yet we tend to show partiality all to easily. Worse, we don’t think it’s bad or don’t think about it much at all because it comes all to natural. We need to continually remember that Christ warns that we will be judged by how we judge others. We need to fight within ourselves unlearn partiality.” (Sacramental Living Blog)

“God shows no partiality based on race or ethnicity, but that He gives salvation to those who seek it from all peoples. Any form of racial or ethnic prejudice, whether it be towards a particular group, or against particular people, is completely incompatible with the Gospel of Jesus Christ.” (Father Stephen De Young)

#Dynamis #FatherAndrewDemotses #OrthodoxStudyBible #SacramentalLivingBlog #FatherStephenDeYoung