Who is wise and understanding among you? (James 3:13a)

This is spoken concerning the work of public teaching; and the meaning of the apostle is, that if there were such persons among them, they should be selected for that office. The characteristics here stated as necessary qualifications are wisdom and knowledge. Those, it would seem, on which reliance had been placed, were chiefly those who were connected with ready oratory, or the mere faculty of speaking. The apostle had stated the dangers which would follow if reliance were placed on that alone, and he now says that something more is necessary, that the primary qualifications for the office are wisdom and knowledge. No mere power of speaking, however eloquent it might be, was a sufficient qualification. The primary things to be sought about that office were wisdom and knowledge, and they who were endowed with these things should be selected for public instructors.