Author: David Wilber
The Bible says, "Be doers of the word, and not hearers only" (James 1:22). It’s not enough just to know about Torah. Followers of Yeshua must also live Torah. The Torah commands us to keep our promises:
If a man vows a vow to the Lord, or swears an oath to bind himself by a pledge, he shall not break his word. He shall do according to all that proceeds out of his mouth. (Numbers 30:2)
Keeping our word is the duty of every follower of Messiah. Yeshua and James taught that we should be such a people of integrity that making an elaborate oath would be completely unnecessary—we don’t have to sell ourselves because our simple “yes” or “no” is trusted and sufficient (Matthew 5:34-37; James 5:12).
Why is keeping our promises so important? Because we bear God’s image. And since God always keeps His word, we must keep our word as well.
A “flake” is someone who makes promises but doesn’t follow through with them. They are unreliable. They are the people who make plans to be somewhere but never show up. And even if they have the decency to inform you that they won’t be there, they’ll usually just send a text message at the last minute saying that “something came up.” The flaky person cannot commit to anything.
Ultimately, flakiness comes down to a lack of love and consideration for others, which breaks the second greatest commandment to “love your neighbor as yourself ” (James 2:8). If people truly loved their neighbor as themselves, they wouldn’t be flaky. That’s because everyone who has ever dealt with a flaky person knows how utterly disrespectful and frustrating it can be.
When we who claim to follow the God of Israel flake out on others—when we break God’s commandment to keep our promises—we profane the name of God. Believers are called to be “imitators of God” (Ephesians 5:1). Is your life a representation of God’s faithfulness, or by your actions do you make God out to be an unreliable flake?
This article is an except from my book, When Faith Works: Living Out the Law of Liberty According to James. Learn more here.
About David Wilber
David is first and foremost a passionate follower of Yeshua the Messiah. He is also a writer, speaker, and teacher.
David’s heart is to minister to God’s people by helping them rediscover the validity and blessing of God’s Torah and help prepare them to give an answer to anyone who asks about the hope within them (1 Peter 3:15)…