The orphans and widows during this time in history would have represented societies’ most helpless members. Now we may think of refugees, foster kids, or those trapped in poverty. According to James “pure religion” is more than getting a service right or following a certain set of rituals but about showing up and helping those in need as well as keeping yourself untainted by the world and it’s systems. We must not forget in our quest for justice that we are pursuing justice in the name of Jesus. It is not the systems of the world that will save us. God can use them to bring justice forth but we must be leery of relying on a person, group, campaign, or any other human construct as our salvation. While God uses humans, He alone is able to judge with perfection.
Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you.
~ James 1:27 [NLT]