James - 2


1My brothers, do not let class distinction enter into your faith in Jesus Christ, our glorified Lord. 2Now suppose a man comes into your synagogue, well-dressed and with a gold ring on, and at thesame time a poor man comes in, in shabby clothes, 3and you take notice of the wel -dressed man, and say, 'Come this way to the best seats'; then you tellthe poor man, 'Stand over there' or 'You can sit on the floor by my foot-rest.' 4In making this distinction among yourselves have you not used a corrupt standard? 5Listen, my dear brothers: it was those who were poor according to the world that God chose, to be richin faith and to be the heirs to the kingdom which he promised to those who love him. 6You, on the other hand, have dishonoured the poor. Is it not the rich who lord it over you? 7Are not they the ones who drag you into court, who insult the honourable name which has beenpronounced over you? 8Well, the right thing to do is to keep the supreme Law of scripture: you will love your neighbour asyourself; 9but as soon as you make class distinctions, you are committing sin and under condemnation forbreaking the Law. 10You see, anyone who keeps the whole of the Law but trips up on a single point, is stil guilty ofbreaking it al . 11He who said, 'You must not commit adultery' said also, 'You must not kil .' Now if you commit murder,you need not commit adultery as wel to become a breaker of the Law. 12Talk and behave like people who are going to be judged by the law of freedom. 13Whoever acts without mercy wil be judged without mercy but mercy can afford to laugh at judgement. 14How does it help, my brothers, when someone who has never done a single good act claims to havefaith? Wil that faith bring salvation? 15If one of the brothers or one of the sisters is in need of clothes and has not enough food to live on, 16and one of you says to them, 'I wish you well; keep yourself warm and eat plenty,' without giving themthese bare necessities of life, then what good is that? 17In the same way faith, if good deeds do not go with it, is quite dead. 18But someone may say: So you have faith and I have good deeds? Show me this faith of yours withoutdeeds, then! It is by my deeds that I will show you my faith. 19You believe in the one God -- that is creditable enough, but even the demons have the same belief,and they tremble with fear. 20Fool! Would you not like to know that faith without deeds is useless? 21Was not Abraham our father justified by his deed, because he offered his son Isaac on the altar? 22So you can see that his faith was working together with his deeds; his faith became perfect by what hedid. 23In this way the scripture was fulfil ed: Abraham put his faith in God, and this was considered asmaking him upright; and he received the name 'friend of God'. 24You see now that it is by deeds, and not only by believing, that someone is justified. 25There is another example of the same kind: Rahab the prostitute, was she not justified by her deedsbecause she welcomed the messengers and showed them a different way to leave? 26As a body without a spirit is dead, so is faith without deeds.
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