Daily Devotional Thursday 19th November 2020

by William Moody

James 1:1–4


1:1 James, a servant1 of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ,

To the twelve tribes in the Dispersion:


Testing of Your Faith

Count it all joy, my brothers,2 when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.


[1] 1:1 For the contextual rendering of the Greek word doulos, see Preface
[2] 1:2 Or brothers and sisters. In New Testament usage, depending on the context, the plural Greek word adelphoi (translated “brothers”) may refer either to brothers or to brothers and sisters; also verses 16, 19


The book of James is a very practical book about Christian living. It is believed to have been written by James, a brother of Jesus (see Matthew 13 v55). James’ humility is seen in that he doesn’t make a big deal about being a brother of Jesus but prefers to call himself a servant of God and of Jesus.

The original recipients of this letter were probably Jewish believers (‘the twelve tribes scattered’ – v1b) living in many different countries around the Mediterranean.

James is speaking about Christian living particularly in the face of trials (v2-4). To consider trials as a source of pure joy is an astonishing statement but it is one James justifies because he can see God’s great plan to bring believers to maturity being worked out through trials.

Trials are never pleasant but when we know our most wise and loving God has a purpose in them, it should cause us to look at trials very differently. God allows His children to go through painful trials because He loves us. He also will never cause His children to shed a needless tear.

Scripture quotations are from the ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®),
copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.
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