Tag Archives: James

Epistle of James

Translation of the book of James completed.

I have uploaded two pdf files of my translation of the Epistle of James. (See a few excerpts below.) This letter, part of the Bible, was written by the Apostle James, and it almost did not make it into the Bible, into what is called the “canon of scripture.” This is because many thought that its teachings on works contradicted the New Testament’s teachings on grace.

I was surprised how much I enjoyed translating this letter. Many people consider it disjointed, with no discernible outline or organization. I disagree. I like what Shepherd said. He called the letter of James “a series of eight homiletic-didactic discourses” with each discourse developing a principal theme linked together by “skillful use of word-links and thematic recapitulations.” (D. Edmond Hebert quoting Shepherd).

I would venture to say, that those who consider this book of the Bible to be disjointed, possibly have that opinion because of reading a poor translation of it, one which does not translate the Greek transition or segue cues correctly, or whose translators did not understand those cues in the Greek. Not everyone is good at Discourse Analysis.

One theme I noticed in this Epistle is selfishness.
“Vaunting your own selves with your presumptuous words.” Killing, envying, jealousy. epistle-of-james

Excerpts from my new translation of the Letter of James:

“See how a small flame sets ablaze such a large forest. The tongue also is a flame, a world of damage.”

“The fully operating prayer of a righteous person is able to achieve much. ¹⁷Elijah was a human being with emotional weaknesses like we are. And he prayed the prayer for it not to rain, and no rain fell on the land for a period of three years and six months. ¹⁸And he prayed again, and the sky gave rain, and the land sprouted up its fruit.”

⁵Or do you think the scripture says for no reason, “The Spirit whom God made to dwell in us craves possession of us, approaching jealousy”?

Here is the link to download my new translation, the pdf of the one interlinear with the Greek text. Here is the link for the Epistle of James without the Greek text.

Or to read James online this link.

More resources on the General Epistle of James may be found at this link.

Please share the Epistle of James

James’ Word Fun

I am having a lot of fun with the Epistle of James. It contains many instances of its author using the same Greek word twice or multiple times. It also contains many instances of intended contrast.

For example, 3 times he uses these words that have the same root:

James 1:8 A double-minded man is ἀκατάστατος – unstable in all his ways
James 3:8 The tongue is a ἀκατάστατον κακόν- volatile menace.
James 3:16 Where there is envy and rivalry, there is ἀκαταστασία– disorder

Read my translation of the Epistle of James.

Royse and the Majority Text Enthusiasts

I’m working on my translation of the Epistle of James. I remind us all how we have constantly heard from Majority Text / Byzantine text enthusiasts about the Royse study on scribal habits, how scribes were more likely to drop a word than add a word. Okay, then, I expect the Majority Text / Byzantine text editors to add at least one or some of the following words back to their texts that are found in the NA28 text but not in theirs.

1:19 ESTW DE, MT has only ESTW
1:27 PARA TWI QEWI, MT has only PARA QEWI
4:1 KAI POQEN MACHAI, MT has only KAI MACHAI
5:10 EN TWI, MT has only EN
5:11 ESTIN hO KURIOS, MT has only ESTIN
5:16 EXOMOLOGEISQE OUN, MT has only EXOMOLOGEISQE
5:19 ADELFOI MOU, MT has only ADELFOI
5:20 PSUCHJN AUTOU, MT has only PSUCHJN

The NA28 has in fact moved a little toward the MT in this regard. For example, in James 2:14, older editions said only TI OFELOS, but now have agreed in the 28th edition with the MT as TI TO OFELOS. And in 2:15, older editions said only LEIPOMENOI, but the NA28 now says LEIPOMENOI WSIN like the MT. And in 4:10 added TOU. Three instances in James where the Nestle-Aland text moved closer to the Majority Text. But will the Majority Text / Byzantine Text-type enthusiasts ever budge? I’m not holding my breath. If it’s not in their favorite family of manuscripts, no amount of reason to the contrary ever suffices.