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James 1 is the first chapter of the Epistle of James in the New Testament of the Christian Bible. The author identifies himself as "James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ" and the epistle is traditionally attributed to James the brother of Jesus.[1][2]

James 1
Papyrus 23 James 1,15-18.jpg
Epistle of James 1:15-18 on the verso side of Papyrus 23, from ca. AD 250.
BookEpistle of James
CategoryGeneral epistles
Christian Bible partNew Testament
Order in the Christian part20



The original text is written in Koine Greek. This chapter is divided into 27 verses.

Some earliest manuscripts containing this chapter are:

Verse 1Edit

New King James Version

James, a bondservant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ,
To the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad:

Verse 4Edit

New King James Version

But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing. [4]

Verse 5Edit

New King James Version

If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him.[5]

Verse 12Edit

New King James Version

Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him.[6]

Verse 13Edit

New King James Version

Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am tempted by God”; for God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He Himself tempt anyone.[7]
  • "Tempted" used here by the author in another sense than he did before. Previously he speaks of temptations, in relation to joy and boasting, enduring patiently as exercising grace, in which God was concerned, but here the temptations are the issue of shame and death, to be watched against.[8]
  • "Tempted of God,": God is holy, and without iniquity, he does not delight in sin, but hates and abhors it; nor can he commit it, it being contrary to his nature, and the perfections of it; whereas no one can tempt another to sin, unless he is sinful himself, and delights in sin, and in those that commit it, nor without committing it himself; and yet sinful men are apt to charge God with their sins, and temptations to them, in imitation of their first parent, Adam, when fallen, ( Genesis 3:12 ) who, to excuse himself, lays the blame upon the woman, and ultimately upon God, who gave her to him; and suggests, that if it had not been for the woman, he should not have eaten of the forbidden fruit, nor should he have had any temptation to it, had not God given him the woman to be with him, and therefore it was his fault; and in this sad manner do his sons and daughters reason, who, when, through affliction, they murmur against God, distrust his providence, or forsake his ways, say, if he had not laid his hand upon them, or suffered such afflictions to befall them, they had not been guilty of such sin: he himself is the occasion of them; but let no man talk at this wicked rate,[8]
  • for God cannot be tempted with evil;

or "evils", He was tempted by the Israelites at Massah and Meribah, from which those places had their names, who by their murmuring, distrust and unbelief, proved and tried his patience and his power; and so he may be, and has been tempted by others in a like way; he may be tempted by evil men, and with evil things, but he cannot be tempted "to evil", as the Ethiopic version renders it; he is proof against all such temptations: he cannot be tempted by anything in himself, who is pure and holy, or by any creature or thing without him, to do any sinful action:[8]

  • neither tempteth he any man;

that is, to sin; he tempted Abraham, to try his faith, love, and obedience to him; he tempted the Israelites in the wilderness, to try them and humble them, and prove what was in their hearts; and he tempted Job, and tried his faith and patience; and so he tempts and tries all his righteous ones, by afflictions, more or less: but he never tempts or solicits them to sin; temptations to sin come from another quarter, as follows.[8]

Verse 27Edit

New King James Version

Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.[9]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Davids, Peter H (1982). I Howard Marshall and W Ward Gasque (ed.). New International Greek Testament Commentary: The Epistle of James (Repr. ed.). Grand Rapids, Mich.: Eerdmans. ISBN 0802823882.
  2. ^ Evans, Craig A (2005). Craig A Evans (ed.). Bible Knowledge Background Commentary: John, Hebrews-Revelation. Colorado Springs, Colo.: Victor. ISBN 0781442281.
  3. ^ James 1:1
  4. ^ James 1:4
  5. ^ James 1:5
  6. ^ James 1:12
  7. ^ James 1:13 NKJV
  8. ^ a b c d John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible - James 1:13
  9. ^ James 1:27

  This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Gill, John. Exposition of the Entire Bible (1746-1763).

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