But scholars have suggested that this is not an unequivocal statement. What more can we know of James and his earlier life from the Gospel accounts? And are not his sisters here with us? At one point, they actually thought Him mad Mark By the opening of the book of Acts, however, James had become one of the disciples. James soon became the leader of the Jerusalem church, as demonstrated by the fact that Paul met with him and the apostle Peter also called Cephas when he first went to Jerusalem after his conversion Galatians — He met James on another occasion when he brought famine relief to Jerusalem from the churches outside Judea Acts The fact that James was leader in Jerusalem is attested by such extrabiblical sources as the second-century historian Hegesippus.
According to Eusebius, another reference is found in the now lost writings of Clement of Alexandria ca.
Bad Acts of the Apostles 
The short book of James is a moral, doctrinal and literary masterpiece. Coming from a Jewish background, James was aware of the history of ancient Israel and its origins with the 12 sons of Jacob. That many of their descendants, not just those from the tribe of Judah, had been dispersed through captivity, persecution and migration explains his reference. Thus he contextualizes trying circumstances in the light of spiritual development. And if trials cause us to recognize our need for wisdom in dealing with them, then we should ask God for such help in confidence.
Wealth affords little protection against these kinds of problems. The rich will eventually fade like the grass of the field verses 9— James further cautions against falling into the trap of blaming God for the difficulties we bring on ourselves by succumbing to sin verses 13— God gives good gifts to His children, not the evil consequences of our own wrong actions. At the close of the first chapter he sets the tone for what will follow. Human anger cannot produce godly righteousness.
It is the Word of God that instructs us in right ways. But knowing is not enough, he writes; we must act on what we know to be right. Otherwise it is like looking at our image in the mirror, seeing what is wrong, and doing nothing to remedy what we find verses 23— Thus, defining meaningful religion, James expresses its core in terms of both self-control and positive, outgoing action.
The theme of acting on belief will recur throughout the letter. The law of God covers all aspects of human behavior in principle, and James gives several examples of how belief should result in changed, law-abiding behavior. First, he writes that favoring one person over another according to his or her wealth and status has no place in the godly value system James —9.
Bad Acts of the Apostles | John Clifford Henson | | ejigowem.cf
After all, he says, it is too often the wealthy who exploit and disadvantage the poor. They may even disparage the name of Jesus. One is well dressed and wealthy, the other shabbily dressed and poor. James says that respecting the first over the other because of wealth and social standing would be wrong. It would be dishonoring and humiliating the poor. Showing partiality is breaking one part of the law by not loving neighbor as self—one of the two great overall principles of the Ten Commandments see Matthew — And breaking law is sin. It is a biblical concept that keeping all but one law still renders us accountable.
For example, James says, by refusing to commit adultery, but on the other hand committing murder, it is as if we are guilty of breaking the whole law James — The idea here is that the law cannot be divided into important and less important commands. We must adhere to all of it, realizing that God will judge us according to its principles, which, if kept in the spirit, free us from the penalty of sin: eternal death verse James concludes by stating that those who show mercy, love and justice to the poor, in this example will receive mercy in the judgment.
He gives a second example of the requirement for faith to be demonstrated in action, pointing out the needs of those members of the believing community who are going hungry. It is a form of hypocrisy to hear their pleas, express hope for their eventual nourishment, and yet do nothing practical to help. Faith must be proven by works. Without them faith is dead verses 14— Faith alone is insufficient. Can that faith save him? Faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead. In a third example of belief demonstrated by action, James turns in chapter three to an extended discussion of the need to bridle or control the tongue, a subject he has touched on earlier James , He begins by mentioning that teaching is a hazardous occupation, because those who do it are responsible for what they say, and it is easy to say things imperfectly James —2.
For this reason alone people should not be too ambitious to become teachers.
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Further, we will all be judged in part by what we say. The difficulty of controlling the tongue is contrasted with how easily we guide much larger objects. They sent out Barnabas to go as far as Antioch,. He exhorted them all, that with purpose of heart they should remain near to the Lord.
It happened, that for a whole year they were gathered together with the assembly, and taught many people.
In A Nutshell
The disciples were first called Christians in Antioch. This was during the days of unleavened bread. Guards in front of the door kept the prison. They went out, and went down one street, and immediately the angel departed from him. When they had opened, they saw him, and were amazed. He went down from Judea to Caesarea, and stayed there. From there they sailed to Cyprus. They had also John as their attendant. This man summoned Barnabas and Saul, and sought to hear the word of God.
He went around seeking someone to lead him by the hand. John departed from them and returned to Jerusalem. They went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and sat down. I am not he. But behold, one comes after me the sandals of whose feet I am not worthy to untie. Today I have become your father. Since indeed you thrust it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of eternal life, behold, we turn to the Gentiles.
As many as were appointed to eternal life believed. Part sided with the Jews, and part with the apostles. We also are men of like passions with you, and bring you good news, that you should turn from these vain things to the living God, who made the sky and the earth and the sea, and all that is in them. On the next day he went out with Barnabas to Derbe. They caused great joy to all the brothers. As it is written,. I will again build the tabernacle of David, which has fallen. I will again build its ruins. I will set it up,. Having gathered the multitude together, they delivered the letter.
Barnabas took Mark with him, and sailed away to Cyprus,. We were staying some days in this city. Do they now release us secretly? No, most certainly, but let them come themselves and bring us out! When they had brought them out, they asked them to depart from the city. When they had seen the brothers, they encouraged them, and departed. Assaulting the house of Jason, they sought to bring them out to the people. These all act contrary to the decrees of Caesar, saying that there is another king, Jesus! When they arrived, they went into the Jewish synagogue.
Receiving a commandment to Silas and Timothy that they should come to him very quickly, they departed. We want to know therefore what these things mean. But now he commands that all people everywhere should repent,. He came to them,. I am clean. From now on, I will go to the Gentiles! Many of the Corinthians, when they heard, believed and were baptized.
He shaved his head in Cenchreae, for he had a vow. He was mighty in the Scriptures. But when Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they took him aside, and explained to him the way of God more accurately. When he had come, he greatly helped those who had believed through grace. Fear fell on them all, and the name of the Lord Jesus was magnified. They counted their price, and found it to be fifty thousand pieces of silver.
Alexander beckoned with his hand, and would have made a defense to the people. Let them press charges against one another. As Paul spoke still longer, being weighed down by his sleep, he fell down from the third story, and was taken up dead. The next day we touched at Samos and stayed at Trogyllium, and the day after we came to Miletus. And they accompanied him to the ship. These said to Paul through the Spirit, that he should not go up to Jerusalem. They all, with wives and children, brought us on our way until we were out of the city. Kneeling down on the beach, we prayed. We greeted the brothers, and stayed with them one day.
We entered into the house of Philip the evangelist, who was one of the seven, and stayed with him. For I am ready not only to be bound, but also to die at Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus. The assembly must certainly meet, for they will hear that you have come. Then all will know that there is no truth in the things that they have been informed about you, but that you yourself also walk keeping the law. This is the man who teaches all men everywhere against the people, and the law, and this place.
Moreover, he also brought Greeks into the temple, and has defiled this holy place! They seized Paul and dragged him out of the temple. Immediately the doors were shut.
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They, when they saw the chief captain and the soldiers, stopped beating Paul. I beg you, allow me to speak to the people. When there was a great silence, he spoke to them in the Hebrew language, saying,. He said,.
Curses in Acts: Hearing the Apostles’ Words of Judgment Alongside ‘Magical’ Spell Texts
There you will be told about all things which are appointed for you to do. Arise, be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on the name of the Lord. Do you sit to judge me according to the law, and command me to be struck contrary to the law? Concerning the hope and resurrection of the dead I am being judged! We are ready to kill him before he comes near. Now they are ready, looking for the promise from you.
When he understood that he was from Cilicia, he said,. They informed the governor against Paul. Therefore also he sent for him more often, and talked with him. I have done no wrong to the Jews, as you also know very well.
To Caesar you shall go. Therefore I have brought him forth before you, and especially before you, King Agrippa, that, after examination, I may have something to write. Therefore I beg you to hear me patiently. Concerning this hope I am accused by the Jews, King Agrippa! I both shut up many of the saints in prisons, having received authority from the chief priests, and when they were put to death I gave my vote against them.
Being exceedingly enraged against them, I persecuted them even to foreign cities.
It is hard for you to kick against the goads. Your great learning is driving you insane! For I am persuaded that none of these things is hidden from him, for this has not been done in a corner. I know that you believe. Julius treated Paul kindly, and gave him permission to go to his friends and refresh himself. Fearing that they would run aground on the Syrtis sand bars, they lowered the sea anchor, and so were driven along. You must stand before Caesar.
Behold, God has granted you all those who sail with you. For I believe God, that it will be just as it has been spoken to me. After a little while, they took soundings again, and found fifteen fathoms. Hoisting up the foresail to the wind, they made for the beach. The bow struck and remained immovable, but the stern began to break up by the violence of the waves. So it happened that they all escaped safely to the land. Paul entered in to him, prayed, and laying his hands on him, healed him. After one day, a south wind sprang up, and on the second day we came to Puteoli,.