1:1 From James,1 a slave2 of God and the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes dispersed abroad.3 Greetings!
Joy in Trials
1:2 My brothers and sisters,4 consider it nothing but joy5 when you fall into all sorts of trials, 1:3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces endurance. 1:4 And let endurance have its perfect effect, so that you will be perfect and complete, not deficient in anything. 1:5 But if anyone is deficient in wisdom, he should ask God, who gives to all generously and without reprimand, and it will be given to him. 1:6 But he must ask in faith without doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed around by the wind. 1:7 For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord, 1:8 since he is a double-minded individual,6 unstable in all his ways.
1:9 Now the believer7 of humble means8 should take pride9 in his high position.10 1:10 But the rich person’s pride should be in his humiliation, because he will pass away like a wildflower in the meadow.11 1:11 For the sun rises with its heat and dries up the meadow; the petal of the flower falls off and its beauty is lost forever.12 So also the rich person in the midst of his pursuits will wither away. 1:12 Happy is the one13 who endures testing, because when he has proven to be genuine, he will receive the crown of life that God14 promised to those who love him. 1:13 Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am tempted by God,” for God cannot be tempted by evil,15 and he himself tempts no one. 1:14 But each one is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desires. 1:15 Then when desire conceives, it gives birth to sin, and when sin is full grown, it gives birth to death. 1:16 Do not be led astray, my dear brothers and sisters.16 1:17 All generous giving and every perfect gift17 is from above, coming down18 from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or the slightest hint of change.19 1:18 By his sovereign plan he gave us birth20 through the message of truth, that we would be a kind of firstfruits of all he created.
Living Out the Message
1:19 Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters!21 Let every person be quick to listen, slow to speak, slow to anger. 1:20 For human22 anger does not accomplish God’s righteousness.23 1:21 So put away all filth and evil excess and humbly24 welcome the message implanted within you, which is able to save your souls. 1:22 But be sure you live out the message and do not merely listen to it and so deceive yourselves. 1:23 For if someone merely listens to the message and does not live it out, he is like someone25 who gazes at his own face26 in a mirror. 1:24 For he gazes at himself and then goes out and immediately forgets27 what sort of person he was. 1:25 But the one who peers into the perfect law of liberty and fixes his attention there,28 and does not become a forgetful listener but one who lives it out – he29 will be blessed in what he does.30 1:26 If someone thinks he is religious yet does not bridle his tongue, and so deceives his heart, his religion is futile. 1:27 Pure and undefiled religion before31 God the Father32 is this: to care for orphans and widows in their misfortune and to keep oneself unstained by the world.