James 3:17 But the wisdom from above is first indeed PURE, then PEACEABLE [or, free from worry], considerate, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial [or, free from prejudice] and sincere. Now the fruit of such righteousness is sown in peace by the ones making peace.
Peaceable, what is it? The Greek word used in this text is:
According to: Strongs Hebrew and Greek Dictionaries this word is:
From G1515; pacific; by implication salutary: – peaceable.
G1515 is eirēnē
Probably from a primary verb eirō (to join); peace (literally or figuratively); by implication prosperity: – one, peace, quietness, rest, + set at one again.
The same Greek word also appears in the following New Testament passage which also mentions the fruit of righteousness:
Heb 12:11 Now indeed, all discipline for the present does not seem to be joyful, _but_ painful; but afterwards it yields [the] peaceful [or, free from worry] fruit of righteousness to the ones having been trained by it.
Variations of the word appear in:
Rom 14:19 So then let us pursue what makes for peace and for mutual upbuilding.
Heb 12:14 Be pursuing peace with all [people], and the holiness, without which no one will see the Lord,
A web search defining Peaceable has some the following meanings listed:
inclined or disposed to peace;
peaceful: not disturbed by strife or turmoil or war
in favour of peace; characterized by peace; peaceful
The International Standards Bible Encyclopedia has these definitions:
…. 2) It is to be cherished and followed by Christians. Jesus exhorted His disciples, “Have salt in yourselves, and be at peace one with another” (Mar_9:50); Paul exhorts, “Live in peace: and the God of love and peace shall be with you” (2Co_13:11; compare Rom_12:18; 1Co_7:15). (3) God is therefore “the God of peace,” the Author and Giver of all good (“peace” including every blessing) very frequently (e.g. Rom_15:33; Rom_16:20; 2Th_3:16, etc., “the Lord of peace”). “Peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ” is a common apostolic wish or salutation (compare 1Co_1:3; 2Co_1:2, etc.). …. (5) The peace that Christ brought is primarily spiritual peace from and with God, peace in the heart, peace as the disposition or spirit. He said that He did not come “to send peace on the earth, but a sword,” referring to the searching nature of His call and the divisions and clearances it would create. But, of course, the spirit of the gospel and of the Christian is one of peace, and it is a Christian duty to seek to bring war and strife everywhere to an end. This is represented as the ultimate result of the gospel and Spirit of Christ; universal and permanent peace can come only as that Spirit rules in men’s hearts.
Commentaries on the passages found in James and Hebrews:
Albert Barnes: Then peaceable – The effect of true religion – the wisdom which is from above – will be to dispose a man to live in peace with all others. See the Rom_14:19 note; Heb_12:14.
Robert’s Word Pictures: Old adjective from eirēnē (peace), loving peace here, bringing peace in Heb_12:11 (only N.T. examples). But clearly great as peace is, purity (righteousness) comes before peace and peace at any price is not worth the having. Hence Jesus spurned the devil’s peace of surrender.
At Biblegateway.com There is a commentary on James, Chapter 3, titled “Who Is Wise Among You? “
James summarizes in 3:18 (literally): “The fruit of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace.” This connects peacemaking and righteousness (cf. Jesus in Mt 5:9-10) and suddenly reveals why the disorder in 3:16 is so abhorrent to James. The opposite of the disorder is not a morally neutral order but a morally significant peace. James wants peace for the church because peace is the context in which righteousness can flourish. This is the positive side of what James said in 1:20, that human anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires. Again, James writes out of a passion for righteousness.
It’s time to take a look at the opposite of Pure:
The Free Dictionary by Farlex lists the following as possible opposites of Pure: adulterated; contaminated; corrupt.
At Answers.com some of the words listed as the opposite of chaste are: corrupt, dirty, immodest, immoral, indecent, obscene, unchaste, vulgar
I also found impure and unclean listed as opposites.
The International Bible Standards Encyclopedia shows the opposite of Spiritually Clean as: Uncleanness, Purification, and Defilement. It states that: The adjective akathartos, “unclean,” occurs 31 times, … 4 times to moral uncleanness (three by Paul and one by John the revelator). So we will look at a few of these first.
2Co 6:17 For this reason, “Come out from [the] midst of them and be separated,” says the Lord. “And stop touching [any] unclean [or, defiling] [thing; or, person],” and _I_ will receive you*. [Isaiah 52:11; Ezek 20:34,41] (ASV)
Commentary on this passage points out the contextual meaning of this scripture.
Albert Barnes states: “In Isaiah, “touch no unclean thing;” that is, they were to be pure, and to have no connection with idolatry in any of its forms. So Christians were to avoid all unholy contact with a vain and polluted world. The sense is, “Have no close connection with an idolater, or an unholy person. Be pure; and feel that you belong to a community that is under its own laws, and that is to be distinguished in moral purity from all the rest of the world.”
John Gills states: ” It has no regard to touching, tasting, and eating any sort of food, which was forbid as unclean by the ceremonial law; for the difference between meats clean and unclean was now removed; but if anything is particularly designed by the unclean thing, it seems to be idolatry, and to be a prohibition of joining with worshippers of idols in their idolatrous practices, whereby a moral pollution is contracted; since in the beginning of the former verse it is said, “what agreement hath the temple of God with idols?” though it is rather intended in general, to forbid all communion and fellowship with unclean persons and things, not to touch them, to come nigh them, or have anything to do with them.”
Eph 5:1-5 Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God. But sexual immorality and all impurity or covetousness must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints. Let there be no filthiness nor foolish talk nor crude joking, which are out of place, but instead let there be thanksgiving, For you may be sure of this, that everyone who is sexually immoral or impure, or who is covetous (that is, an idolater), has no inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. (ESV)
Matthew Henery states: “Filthy lusts must be rooted out. These sins must be dreaded and detested. Here are not only cautions against gross acts of sin, but against what some may make light of.”… “Those who allow themselves, either in the lusts of the flesh or the love of the world, belong not to the kingdom of grace, nor shall they come to the kingdom of glory. “…”But the grace of God wrought a mighty change in the souls of many. Walk as children of light, as having knowledge and holiness. These works of darkness are unfruitful, whatever profit they may boast; for they end in the destruction of the impenitent sinner. There are many ways of abetting, or taking part in the sins of others; by commendation, counsel, consent, or concealment. And if we share with others in their sins, we must expect to share in their plagues. If we do not reprove the sins of others, we have fellowship with them. A good man will be ashamed to speak of what many wicked men are not ashamed to do. We must have not only a sight and a knowledge that sin is sin, and in some measure shameful, but see it as a breach of God’s holy law.”
2Pe 2:9-11 [the] Lord knows [how] to be rescuing [the] godly out of temptation, but to be keeping [the] unrighteous being punished for [the] day of judgment, (10) and especially the ones going after [fig., indulging] the flesh in lust of uncleanness [or, unclean desires] and despising authority. [They are] presumptuous [or, reckless], self-willed [or, stubborn], not trembling when they speak evil of glories [fig., angelic beings], (11) whereas angels, being greater in strength and power, do not bring a slanderous judgment against them before [the] Lord.
Albert Barnes states: “It is a very remarkable circumstance, that those who have denied the essential doctrines of the gospel have been so frequently licentious [Lacking restraint, or ignoring societal standards, particularly in sexual conduct; Disregard for accepted rules] in their own conduct, and have inculcated [teach and impress by frequent repetitions or admonitions] opinions which tended to licentiousness [careless wastefulness; shameless and immoral behaviour: unrestrained, by convention or morality, indulgence in sensual pleasure. Many of the forms of religious error have somehow had a connection with this vice. People who are corrupt at heart often seek to obtain the sanction of religion for their corruptions.”
So, what do you think? Does your tree bear this fruit or do you see the fruit of those seen as the opposite? Maybe you have seasons where you bear this fruit and other’s where you don’t? Maybe you see this fruit but it is just a bit too small and needs to grow more? Just remember: All things are possible through Jesus Christ. If you don’t see this fruit, look to God’s Word and He will help you begin to bear this fruit.