The Test Of Your Faithfulness
Ya‘aqōv̱, a servant of the Almĭghty, and of Adŏnai Yĕshua, the Mĕssiah, to the twelve tribes who are dispersed abroad, greetings.
1:2Consider it all joy, my brothers, when you encounter various trials, 3knowing that the testing of your faithfulness produces endurance. 4And let endurance have its perfect result, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. 5But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of the Almĭghty, who gives to all men generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him. 6But let him ask in trusting faithfulness without any doubting, for the one who doubts is like the surf of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. 7For let not that man expect that he will receive anything from Yăhweh, 8being a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.
9But let the brother of humble circumstances glory in his high position; 10and let the rich man glory in his humiliation, because like flowering grass he will pass away. 11For the sun rises with a scorching wind, and withers the grass; and its flower falls off, and the beauty of its appearance is destroyed; so too the rich man in the midst of his pursuits will fade away.
12Blessed is a man who perseveres under trial; for once he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life, which He has promised to those who love him. 13Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by the Almĭghty.” For the Almĭghty cannot be tempted by evil, and he himself does not tempt anyone. 14But each one is tempted when he is carried away and enticed by his own lust. 15Then when lust has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and when sin is accomplished, it brings forth death. 16Do not be deceived, my beloved brothers.
17Every good thing bestowed and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Făther of lights, with whom there is no variation, or shifting shadow. 18In the exercise of his will he brought us forth by the word of truth, so that we might be, as it were, the first fruits among his creatures. 19This you know, my beloved brothers. But let everyone be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger. 20For the anger of man does not achieve the justice of the Almĭghty.
21Therefore putting aside all filthiness and all that remains of wickedness, in humility receive the word implanted, which is able to save your souls. 22But prove yourselves doers of the word, and not merely hearers who delude themselves. 23For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks at his natural face in a mirror; 24for once he has looked at himself and gone away, he has immediately forgotten what kind of person he was. 25But one who looks intently at the perfect Law, the Law of liberty, and abides by it, not having become a forgetful hearer but an effectual doer, this man will be blessed in what he does.
26If anyone thinks himself to be religious, and yet does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this man’s religion is worthless. 27This is pure and undefiled religion in the sight of our Almĭghty and Făther, to visit orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself unstained by the world.
The Sin of Favoritism
MY brothers, do not conduct your faithfulness in our glorious Adŏnai Yĕshua the Mĕssiah with personal favoritism. 2:2For if a man comes into your congregation with a gold ring and dressed in fine clothes, and there also comes in a poor man in dirty clothes, 3and you pay special attention to the one who is wearing the fine clothes, and say, “You sit here in a good place,” and you say to the poor man, “You stand over there, or sit down by my footstool,” 4have you not made distinctions among yourselves, and become judges with evil motives?
5Listen, my beloved brothers: did not the Almĭghty choose the poor of this world to be rich in faithfulness and heirs of the kingdom which he promised to those who love him? 6But you have dishonored the poor man. Is it not the rich who oppress you and personally drag you into court? 7Do they not blaspheme the fair name by which you have been called? 8If, however, you are fulfilling the royal Law, according to the Scripture, You shall love your neighbor as yourself, you are doing well. 9But if you discriminate, you are committing sin and are convicted by the Law as transgressors.
10For whoever keeps the whole Law and yet offends in one point, he has become guilty of all. 11For he who said, “Do not commit adultery,” also said, “Do not commit murder.” Now if you do not commit adultery, but do commit murder, you have become a transgressor of the Law.
12So speak and so act, as those who are to be judged by the Law of liberty. 13For judgment will be merciless to one who has shown no mercy. Mercy triumphs over judgment.
Trust Without Faithfulness
14What use is it, my brothers, if a man says he has an affirmation, but he has no works? Can that affirmation save him? 15If a brother or sister is without clothing and in need of daily food, 16and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and be filled,” and yet you do not give them what is necessary for their body, what use is that? 17Even so that affirmation, if it has no works, is dead by itself.
18But someone will say, “Do you really have faithfulness? I also include works. Show me your faithfulness without the works, if you can, but I will show you my faithfulness by my works.” 19You affirm it faithful that the Almĭghty is one? You do amazingly well! The demons also are affirming it faithful, and shudder.
20But are you willing to recognize, you foolish fellow, that an affirmation without works is useless? 21Was not AbrahamAv̱raham our father righteous by works, when he offered up IsaacYitsɦaq his son on the altar? 22You see that the affirmation was working with his works, and as a result of the works, faithfulness is complete. 23And the Scripture was fulfilled which says, “And A̕v̱raham confirmed his faithfulness in Yăhweh, and it was counted to him as righteousness,” and he was called the friend of the Almĭghty. 24You see that a man is made righteous by works, and not by an affirmation alone.
25And in the same way was not Raḥav̱ the harlot also made righteous by works, when she received the messengers and sent them out by another way? 26For just as the body without a spirit is dead, so also trust without works is dead.
The Tongue is like Fire
Let not many become teachers, my brothers, knowing that as such we will incur a stricter judg ment. 3:2For we all stumble in many ways. If anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect man, able to bridle the whole body as well.
3Now if we put the bits into the horses’ mouths so that they may obey us, we direct their entire body as well. 4Behold, the ships also, though they are so great and are driven by strong winds, are still directed by a very small rudder, wherever the inclination of the pilot desires.
5So also the tongue is a small part of the body, and yet it boasts of great things. Behold, how great a forest is set aflame by such a small fire! 6And the tongue is a fire, the very world of iniquity. The tongue is set among our members as that which defiles the entire body, and sets on fire the course of life, and is set on fire by. 7For every species of beasts and birds, of reptiles and creatures of the sea, is tamed, and has been tamed by the human race.
8But no one can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil and full of deadly poison. 9With it we bless Yăhweh who is our Făther; and with it we curse men, who have been made in the likeness of the Almĭghty. 10From the same mouth come both blessing and cursing. My brothers, these things ought not to be this way.
11Does a fountain send out from the same opening both fresh and bitter water? 12Can a fig tree, my brothers, produce olives, or a vine produce figs? Neither can salt water produce fresh.
Worldly Wisdom Is Not From Yăhwēh
13Who among you is wise and understanding? Let him show by his good behavior his deeds in the gentleness of wisdom. 14But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your heart, do not be arrogant and so lie against the truth. 15This wisdom is not that which comes down from above, but is earthly, natural, demonic. 16For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there is disorder and every evil thing. 17But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, reasonable, full of mercy and good fruits, unwavering, without hypocrisy. 18And the seed whose fruit is justice is sown in peace by those who make peace.
Selfishness Is Of The World
What is the source of quarrels and conflicts among you? Is not the source your pleasures that wage war in your members? 4:2You lust and do not have, so you commit murder. And you are envious and cannot obtain, so you fight and quarrel. You do not have because you do not ask. 3You ask and do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, so that you may spend it on your pleasures.
4You adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward the Almĭghty? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of the Almĭghty. 5Or do you think that the Scripture speaks to no purpose? He jealously longs for the spirit which he caused to dwell in us. 6But he gives a greater loving-kindness. Therefore it says, The Almĭghty is opposed to the proud, but gives loving-kindness to the humble. 7Submit therefore to the Almĭghty. Resist the Accuser and he will flee from you. 8Draw near to the Almĭghty and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded. 9Be miserable and mourn and weep; let your laughter be turned into mourning, and your joy to gloom. 10Humble yourselves in the presence of Yăhweh, and he will exalt you.
11Do not speak against one another, brothers. He who speaks against a brother, or judges his brother, speaks against the Law, and judges the Law; but if you judge the Law, you are not a doer of the Law, but a judge of it. 12There is only one Lawgiver and Judge, the One who is able to save and to destroy; but who are you who judge your neighbor?
13Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow, we will go to such and such a city, and spend a year there and engage in business and make a profit.” 14Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow. You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away. 15Instead, you ought to say, “If Yăhweh wills, we will live and also do this or that.” 16But as it is, you boast in your arrogance; all such boasting is evil. 17Therefore, to one who knows the right thing to do, and does not do it, to him it is sin.
Misuse of Riches
Come now, you rich, weep and howl for your miseries which are coming upon you. 5:2Your riches have decayed and your clothes have become moth-eaten. 3Your gold and your silver have tarnished; and their rust will be a witness against you and will consume your flesh like fire. It is in the last days that you have stored up your treasure! 4Look, the pay of the laborers who reap your fields, which is being withheld by you, cries out; and the outcry of those who do the harvesting has reached the ears of Yăhweh of Armies. 5You have lived luxuriously on the earth and led a life of wanton pleasure; you have fattened your hearts in a day of slaughter. 6You have condemned and put to death the righteous man; he does not resist you.
7Be patient, therefore, brothers, until the Advent of Yăhweh. behold, the farmer waits for the precious produce of the soil, being patient about it, until it gets the early and late rains. 8You too be patient; strengthen your hearts, for the presence of Yăhweh has come near. 9Do not complain, brothers, against one another, that you yourselves may not be judged; behold, the Judge is standing right at the door. 10As an example, brothers, of suffering and patience, take the prophets who spoke in the name of Yăhweh. 11behold, we count those blessed who endured. You have heard of the endurance of I̕yōv̱ and have seen the outcome of Yăhweh’s dealings, that Yăhweh is full of compassion and is merciful.
12But above all, my brothers, do not swear, either by heaven or by earth or with any other oath; but let your yes be yes, and your no, no; so that you may not fall under judgment.
13Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing praises.
14Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the assembly, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of Yăhweh; 15and the prayer offered in faithfulness will restore the one who is sick, and Yăhweh will raise him up, and if he has committed sins, they will be forgiven him. 16Therefore, confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another, so that you may be healed. The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much. 17Ē‘li̱yahū was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain; and it did not rain on the earth for three years and six months. 18And he prayed again, and the sky poured rain, and the earth produced its fruit.
19My brothers, if any among you strays from the truth, and one turns him back, 20let him know that he who turns a sinner from the error of his way will save his soul from death, and will cover a multitude of sins.