So speak you, and so do, as they that shall be judged by the law of liberty.…
To be amenable to "the law of liberty" is a very solemn thing. It involves the question: Shall I be found by the Heart-searcher to have believed its doctrines and obeyed its rules? Many, however, there are who think — unbelieving and disobedient though they be — that, since Christianity is a "law of liberty," they themselves will be absolved. Foolish dream! perilous presumption! Yes, Christianity brings freedom in her hand, and offers it to the devil's bondslaves. But what kind of freedom? Not liberty to sin, but the emancipation of the soul from the very taste for what is wrong. And how is the freedom which she gives attained? By a moral change which these men have never undergone, and a faith which has never taken possession of their souls. Except by faith, even the blessed and generous religion of Jesus Christ delivers no one from the ban of the broken covenant of works. The apostle requires his readers "so to speak, and so to do, as they that shall be judged by the law of liberty." This rule, of course, implies that words as well as deeds come within the scope of that procedure which will be taken account of at the day of judgment. So Christ expressly speaks (Matthew 12:36). And, in accordance with this principle, James dwells largely in this Epistle on the right and wrong use of the tongue.
(A. S. Patterson, D. D.)
Parallel VersesKJV: So speak ye, and so do, as they that shall be judged by the law of liberty.