1James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ,
To the twelve tribes scattered among the nations:
Trials and temptations
2Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters,1:2 The Greek word for brothers and sisters (adelphoi) refers here to believers, both men and women, as part of God’s family; also in verses 16 and 19; and in 2:1, 5, 14; 3:10, 12; 4:11; 5:7, 9, 10, 12, 19. whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 4Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. 5If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. 6But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. 7That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. 8Such a person is double-minded and unstable in all they do.
9Believers in humble circumstances ought to take pride in their high position. 10But the rich should take pride in their humiliation – since they will pass away like a wild flower. 11For the sun rises with scorching heat and withers the plant; its blossom falls and its beauty is destroyed. In the same way, the rich will fade away even while they go about their business.
12Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.
13When tempted, no-one should say, ‘God is tempting me.’ For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; 14but each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed. 15Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.
16Don’t be deceived, my dear brothers and sisters. 17Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. 18He chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of all he created.
Listening and doing
19My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, 20because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires. 21Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent, and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.
22Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. 23Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror 24and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. 25But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it – not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it – they will be blessed in what they do.
26Those who consider themselves religious and yet do not keep a tight rein on their tongues deceive themselves, and their religion is worthless. 27Religion 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.
2我的弟兄姊妹，當你們遭遇各種磨煉的時候，都要認為是喜樂的事。 3要知道你們的信心經過考驗會產生堅忍。 4你們要堅忍到底，使你們纯全、完備、毫無缺欠。
9卑微的弟兄高升，應當快樂。 10富有的弟兄降卑，也要快樂，因為他會像花草一樣衰殘。 11驕陽升起，草就乾枯，花也凋謝，美麗就消失了。富有的人在忙忙碌碌中也會如此衰殘。
12在試煉中能夠忍耐到底的人有福了，因為他若經得起考驗，就會得到主應許賜給愛祂之人的生命冠冕。 13當人受到誘惑時，不可說：「是上帝在誘惑我。」因為上帝不受邪惡的誘惑，也不誘惑人。 14其實每個受到誘惑的人都是受自己的私慾慫恿和誘惑。 15私慾懷了胎，便生出罪，罪一旦長成，便帶來死亡。
16我親愛的弟兄姊妹，不要上當受騙。 17一切良善的施予和完美的恩賜都是從天上，從眾光之父那裡來的。祂不像轉動的影子變幻無常。 18祂按照自己的旨意，藉著真道重生了我們，使我們在祂所造的萬物之中好像初熟的果實。
19我親愛的弟兄姊妹，請記住：每個人都要快快地聽，慢慢地說，慢慢地動怒。 20因為人的憤怒不能成就上帝的公義。 21所以你們要除去所有的污穢和一切的惡習，謙卑地領受那已經栽種在你們心裡、能救你們靈魂的真道。
22你們要行道，不要只是聽道，自己欺騙自己。 23因為人聽道而不行道，就像照鏡子一樣， 24看過後就走了，隨即忘記了自己的容貌。 25但詳細查考那使人得自由的全備律法並且持之以恆的人，不是聽了就忘，而是身體力行，這樣的人必在他所行的事上蒙福。