A Warning against Favoritism
1 My brothers, as you hold out your faith in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ, do not show favoritism.
2 Suppose a man comes into your meeting a wearing a gold ring and fine clothes, and a poor man in shabby clothes also comes in. 3 If you lavish attention on the man in fine clothes and say, “Here is a seat of honor,” but say to the poor man, “You must stand” or “Sit at my feet,” 4 have you not discriminated among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts?
5 Listen, my beloved brothers: Has not God chosen the poor of this world to be rich in faith and to inherit the kingdom He promised those who love Him? 6 But you have dishonored the poor. Is it not the rich who oppress you and drag you into court? 7 Are they not the ones who blaspheme the noble name by which you have been called? b
10 Whoever keeps the whole law but stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it. 11 For He who said, “Do not commit adultery,” d also said, “Do not murder.” e If you do not commit adultery, but do commit murder, you have become a lawbreaker.
Faith and Works
14 What good is it, my brothers, if someone claims to have faith, but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? 15 Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. 16 If one of you tells him, “Go in peace;stay warm and well fed,” but does not provide for his physical needs, what good is that? 17 So too, faith by itself, if it does not result in action, f is dead.
18 But someone will say, “You have faith and I have deeds.” Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by my deeds. 19 You believe that God is one. g Good for you! Even the demons believe that—and shudder.
20 O foolish man, do you want evidence that faith without deeds is worthless? h 21 Was not our father Abraham justified by what he did when he offered his son Isaac on the altar? 22 You see that his faith was working with his actions, and his faith was perfected by what he did. 23 And the Scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness,” i and he was called a friend of God. j 24 As you can see, a man is justified by his deeds and not by faith alone.
25 In the same way, was not even Rahab the prostitute justified by her actions when she welcomed the spies k and sent them off on another route? 26 As the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without deeds is dead.
2 a Greek your synagogue
7 b Or the noble name invoked upon you or the noble name of Him to whom you belong
8 c Leviticus 19:18
11 d Exodus 20:14;Deuteronomy 5:18
11 e Exodus 20:13;Deuteronomy 5:17
17 f Literally if it does not have works
19 g Or that there is one God
20 h BYZ and TR dead
23 i Genesis 15:6
23 j See Isaiah 41:8.
25 k Literally messengers