Let this verse sink in:
Let not many of you become teachers, my brethren, knowing that as such we will incur a stricter judgment.
In an age of feel-good Christianity that’s the religion of Oprah sprinkled in with some Christianese sounding memes, this goes against the spirit of the present age.
It goes against the spirit of this age in five ways:
First there is judgement.
Second, there is stricter judgment for some.
Third there is a stricter judgment against teachers.
Fourth, not everyone should be teachers.
Fifth, when we say not everyone James actually said “not many of you.”
Now there is a context of James 3:1. That context goes on to talk about self-control, specifically self-control with the tongue.
But as you know when we can’t have self-control over one thing, it’s not as if its contained in one area; the hallmark of the lack of self-control spill over to other areas, like a wild forest fires. Lack of self-control with the tongue is often by lack of self-control in other areas.
So men who want to be preachers and teachers, or who are presently preachers and teachers, ask yourself are you in the trajectory of facing stricter judgment?
Turn to Him who shows grace. Grace not only to forgive, which we can so easily want when we are convicted and which we must appropriate. But also the ordinary means of grace, the discipline of grace that is promised to sinners He saved that He will sanctify them. Start by confessing your sins to God because of this promise:
If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (1 John 1:9)