By Theodore Epp
It is significant that the characteristics James first listed for godly wisdom are purity and peaceableness. These two have an important relationship. An individual is made pure through faith in Jesus Christ, and this establishes peace between God and himself Romans 5:1 says, “Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
Once this peace has been established through a vertical relationship between the believer and God, the believer will then have a basis on which to establish peaceful horizontal relationships with his fellowmen.
James also said that the wisdom that is from above is “gentle” (James 3:17), so each believer should reflect this gentleness in his life. Paul told Timothy–and all believers “The servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men” (2 Tim. 2:24). Titus 3:2 sounds a similar note: “To speak evil of no man, to be no brawlers, but gentle, shewing all meekness unto all men.”
A wise person is tender and full of mercy and sympathy. Such a person shows compassion, or pity, for the less fortunate. This was emphasized by James when he said, “Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction” (James 1:27).
“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom: a good understanding have all they that do his commandments: his praise endureth for ever” (Ps. 111:10).