THE BOOK OF JAMES HAS BEEN variously considered an epistle, a sermon (to be read aloud in the churches), a form of wisdom literature, a diatribe, and a moral exhortation. These categories are not mutually exclusive, and there are elements of all these forms in James.
The epistle has a markedly Jewish flavor and refers frequently to the Old Testament. The literary structure of parallelism is used (1: 9,10), along with aphorisms, concrete images drawn from nature, and groups of sayings that have a clear similarity to the style of Jesus.
The epistle teaches a high Christology and stresses the importance of dealing with afflictions from the standpoint of faith. The crucial relationship between faith and active works of obedience receives special attention (2: 14-26).
- The Reformation Study Bible
Published by Ligonier Ministries, Sanford FL
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