Adulterers and adulteresses Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. Or do you think that the Scripture says in vain, “The Spirit who dwells in us yearns jealously”? But He gives more grace. Therefore He says: “God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble.” Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.
James now gets tough with our fascination and love affair with the world. He plainly tells us to stop our love affair with the world and to submit to God. It’s very important we not get offended. Rather, we take the time to truly understand the terms James is using in these passages, and how they affect our relationship with God. James purposely uses the words “adulterer and adulteresses.” However, he is not talking in the physical sense, rather he is speaking in the spiritual sense. He does so because these terms best show us, how God feels when Christians try to live with one foot in God’s kingdom, and one foot in a fallen world. In other words, we cannot truly love the Lord, while still maintaining a love affair with a world opposed to God. A world influenced by the one the Apostle Paul calls the “prince of the power of the air,” who is Satan. When the children of God chase after the things of the world, we hurt God.
When we live ignoring God’s word, ignoring the promptings and guidance of the Holy Spirit, God is deeply hurt. When we treat obedience to God’s commandments, which are written on our hearts as unnecessary, we are committing spiritual adultery in God’s eyes! God loves us dearly, so much so He stepped out of eternity and died for us, therefore our rebellion deeply hurts the Lord. Moreover, this is no small matter with God. We mustn’t forget how the nation of Israel went into exile for the very same thing. In addition, this activity or behavior affects the quality of our lives, our ministries, our families as well as the quality of our spiritual walk with God. When we who claim to be followers of Jesus, and therefore children of God, purposely leave God to chase after the world. A world which is under the influence of Satan, a world which is at enmity with God, we are showing infidelity and enmity toward God. And this critically affects our relationship with God. And leave us no doubt as to the severity of such actions. James tells us that any Christians who do so, make themselves enemies of God. This is because even though they may not realize it, they are exercising a behavior which is displayed by those who hate God.