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James 1:1 [study!]

American Standard Version (ASV 1901) [2]
— James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are of the Dispersion, greeting.
King James Version (KJV 1769)
— James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad, greeting.
New American Standard Bible (NASB ©1995)
— James, a bond-servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, To the twelve tribes who are dispersed abroad: Greetings.
Webster's Revision of the KJB (WEB 1833)
— James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad, greeting.
Darby's Translation (DBY 1890)
— James, bondman of God and of [the] Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which [are] in the dispersion, greeting.
Rotherham's Emphasized Bible (EBR 1902)
— James, a servant, of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ,—unto the twelve tribes that are in the dispersion, Wishes joy.
Young's Literal Translation (YLT 1898)
— James, of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ a servant, to the Twelve Tribes who are in the dispersion: Hail!
Douay-Rheims Challoner Revision (DR 1750)
— James, the servant of God and of our Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad, greeting.
Original King James Bible (AV 1611) [2]
— Iames a seruant of God, and of the Lord Iesus Christ, to the twelue Tribes which are scattered abroad, greeting.
John Etheridge Peshitta-Aramaic NT (1849)
— JAKUB, a servant of Aloha and of our Lord Jeshu Meshiha, unto the twelve tribes who are dispersed among the nations: Peace.
James Murdock Peshitta-Aramaic NT (1852)
— JAMES, a servant of God, and of our Lord Jesus the Messiah; to the twelve tribes dispersed among the Gentiles; greeting [peace].

Strong's Numbers & Red-LettersGreek New TestamentColor-Code/Key Word Studies
James, 2385
{2385} Prime
Ἰάκωβος
Iakobos
{ee-ak'-o-bos}
The same as G2384 Graecized; Jacobus, the name of three Israelites.
a servant 1401
{1401} Prime
δοῦλος
doulos
{doo'-los}
From G1210; a slave (literally or figuratively, involuntarily or voluntarily; frequently therefore in a qualified sense of subjection or subserviency).
of God 2316
{2316} Prime
θεός
theos
{theh'-os}
Of uncertain affinity; a deity, especially (with G3588) the supreme Divinity; figuratively a magistrate; by Hebraism very.
and 2532
{2532} Prime
καί
kai
{kahee}
Apparently a primary particle, having a copulative and sometimes also a cumulative force; and, also, even, so, then, too, etc.; often used in connection (or composition) with other particles or small words.
of the Lord 2962
{2962} Prime
κύριος
kurios
{koo'-ree-os}
From κῦρος [[kuros]] (supremacy); supreme in authority, that is, (as noun) controller; by implication Mr. (as a respectful title).
Jesus 2424
{2424} Prime
Ἰησοῦς
Iesous
{ee-ay-sooce'}
Of Hebrew origin [H3091]; Jesus (that is, Jehoshua), the name of our Lord and two (three) other Israelites.
Christ, 5547
{5547} Prime
Χριστός
Christos
{khris-tos'}
From G5548; anointed, that is, the Messiah, an epithet of Jesus.
to the x3588
(3588) Complement

ho
{ho}
The masculine, feminine (second) and neuter (third) forms, in all their inflections; the definite article; the (sometimes to be supplied, at others omitted, in English idiom).
twelve 1427
{1427} Prime
δώδεκα
dodeka
{do'-dek-ah}
From G1417 and G1176; two and ten, that is, a dozen.
tribes 5443
{5443} Prime
φυλή
phule
{foo-lay'}
From G5453 (compare G5444); an offshoot, that is, race or clan.
which y1722
[1722] Standard
ἐν
en
{en}
A primary preposition denoting (fixed) position (in place, time or state), and (by implication) instrumentality (medially or constructively), that is, a relation of rest (intermediate between G1519 and G1537); 'in', at, (up-) on, by, etc.
x3588
(3588) Complement

ho
{ho}
The masculine, feminine (second) and neuter (third) forms, in all their inflections; the definite article; the (sometimes to be supplied, at others omitted, in English idiom).
are scattered abroad, 1290
{1290} Prime
διασπορά
diaspora
{dee-as-por-ah'}
From G1289; dispersion, that is, (specifically and concretely) the (converted) Israelites resident in Gentile countries.
x1722
(1722) Complement
ἐν
en
{en}
A primary preposition denoting (fixed) position (in place, time or state), and (by implication) instrumentality (medially or constructively), that is, a relation of rest (intermediate between G1519 and G1537); 'in', at, (up-) on, by, etc.
greeting. 5463
{5463} Prime
χαίρω
chairo
{khah'-ee-ro}
A primary verb; to be full of 'cheer', that is, calmly happy or well off; impersonal especially as a salutation (on meeting or parting), be well.
z5721
<5721> Grammar
Tense - Present (See G5774)
Voice - Active (See G5784)
Mood - Infinitive (See G5795)
Count - 647
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Commentary

James 1:1

_ _ James 1:1-27. Inscription: Exhortation on hearing, speaking, and wrath.

_ _ The last subject is discussed in James 3:13-4:17.

_ _ James — an apostle of the circumcision, with Peter and John, James in Jerusalem, Palestine, and Syria; Peter in Babylon and the East; John in Ephesus and Asia Minor. Peter addresses the dispersed Jews of Pontus, Galatia, and Cappadocia; James, the Israelites of the twelve tribes scattered abroad.

_ _ servant of God — not that he was not an apostle; for Paul, an apostle, also calls himself so; but as addressing the Israelites generally, including even indirectly the unbelieving, he in humility omits the title “apostle”; so Paul in writing to the Hebrews; similarly Jude, an apostle, in his General Epistle.

_ _ Jesus Christ — not mentioned again save in James 2:1; not at all in his speeches (Acts 15:14, Acts 15:15; Acts 21:20, Acts 21:21), lest his introducing the name of Jesus oftener should seem to arise from vanity, as being “the Lord’s brother” [Bengel]. His teaching being practical, rather than doctrinal, required less frequent mention of Christ’s name.

_ _ scattered abroad — literally “which are in the dispersion.” The dispersion of the Israelites, and their connection with Jerusalem as a center of religion, was a divinely ordered means of propagating Christianity. The pilgrim troops of the law became caravans of the Gospel [Wordsworth].

_ _ greeting — found in no other Christian letter, but in James and the Jerusalem Synod’s Epistle to the Gentile churches; an undesigned coincidence and mark or genuineness. In the original Greek (chairein) for “greeting,” there is a connection with the “joy” to which they are exhorted amidst their existing distresses from poverty and consequent oppression. Compare Romans 15:26, which alludes to their poverty.

Matthew Henry's Commentary

James 1:1

_ _ We have here the inscription of this epistle, which consists of three principal parts.

_ _ I. The character by which our author desires to be known: James, a servant of God, and of the Lord Jesus Christ. Though he was a prime-minister in Christ's kingdom, yet he styles himself only a servant. Note hence, Those who are highest in office or attainments in the church of Christ are but servants. They should not therefore act as masters, but as ministers. Further, Though James is called by the evangelist the brother of our Lord, yet it was his glory to serve Christ in the spirit, rather than to boast of his being akin according to the flesh. Hence let us learn to prize this title above all others in the world — the servants of God and of Christ. Again, it is to be observed that James professes himself a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ; to teach us that in all services we should have an eye to the Son as well as the Father. We cannot acceptably serve the Father, unless we are also servants of the Son. God will have all men to honour the Son as they honour the Father (John 5:23), looking for acceptance in Christ and assistance from him, and yielding all obedience to him, thus confessing that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

_ _ II. The apostle here mentions the condition of those to whom he writes: The twelve tribes which are scattered abroad. Some understand this of the dispersion upon the persecution of Stephen, Acts 8. But that only reached to Judea and Samaria. Others by the Jews of the dispersion understand those who were in Assyria, Babylon, Egypt, and other kingdoms into which their wars had driven them. The greatest part indeed of ten of the twelve tribes were lost in captivity; but yet some of every tribe were preserved and they are still honoured with the ancient style of twelve tribes. These however were scattered and dispersed. 1. They were dispersed in mercy. Having the scriptures of the Old Testament, the providence of God so ordered it that they were scattered in several countries for the diffusing of the light of divine revelation. 2. They began now to be scattered in wrath. The Jewish nation was crumbling into parties and factions, and many were forced to leave their own country, as having now grown too hot for them. Even good people among them shared in the common calamity. 3. These Jews of the dispersion were those who had embraced the Christian faith. They were persecuted and forced to seek for shelter in other countries, the Gentiles being kinder to Christians than the Jews were. Note here, It is often the lot even of God's own tribes to be scattered abroad. The gathering day is reserved for the end of time; when all the dispersed children of God shall be gathered together to Christ their head. In the mean time, while God's tribes are scattered abroad, he will send to look after them. Here is an apostle writing to the scattered; an epistle from God to them, when driven away from his temple, and seemingly neglected by him. Apply here that of the prophet Ezekiel, Thus saith the Lord God, Although I have cast them far off among the heathen, and although I have scattered them among the countries, yet will I be to them as a little sanctuary in the countries where they shall come, Ezekiel 11:16. God has a particular care of his outcasts. Let my outcasts dwell with thee, Moab, Isaiah 16:3, Isaiah 16:4. God's tribes may be scattered; therefore we should not value ourselves too much on outward privileges. And, on the other hand, we should not despond and think ourselves rejected, under outward calamities, because God remembers and sends comfort to his scattered people.

_ _ III. James here shows the respect he had even for the dispersed: greeting, saluting them, wishing peace and salvation to them. True Christians should not be the less valued for their hardships. It was the desire of this apostle's heart that those who were scattered might be comforted — that they might do well and fare well, and be enabled to rejoice even in their distresses. God's people have reason to rejoice in all places, and at all times; as will abundantly appear from what follows.

John Wesley's Explanatory Notes

James 1:1

A servant of Jesus Christ — Whose name the apostle mentions but once more in the whole epistle, James 2:1. And not at all in his whole discourse, Acts 15:14, &c.; or Acts 21:20-25. It might have seemed, if he mentioned him often, that he did it out of vanity, as being the brother of the Lord. To the twelve tribes — Of Israel; that is, those of them that believe. Which are scattered abroad — In various countries. Ten of the tribes were scattered ever since the reign of Hosea; and great part of the rest were now dispersed through the Roman empire: as was foretold, Deuteronomy 28:25, &c., Deuteronomy 30:4. Greeting — That is, all blessings, temporal and eternal.

Geneva Bible Translation Notes

James 1:1

James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the (a) twelve tribes which are (b) scattered abroad, greeting.

(a) That is, written to no one man, city, or country, but to all the Jews generally, being now dispersed.

(b) To all the believing Jews, whatever tribe they are from, dispersed throughout the whole world.

Cross-Reference Topical ResearchStrong's Concordance
James:

Matthew 10:3 Philip, and Bartholomew; Thomas, and Matthew the publican; James [the son] of Alphaeus, and Lebbaeus, whose surname was Thaddaeus;
Matthew 13:55 Is not this the carpenter's son? is not his mother called Mary? and his brethren, James, and Joses, and Simon, and Judas?
Mark 3:18 And Andrew, and Philip, and Bartholomew, and Matthew, and Thomas, and James the [son] of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus, and Simon the Canaanite,
Luke 6:15 Matthew and Thomas, James the [son] of Alphaeus, and Simon called Zelotes,
Acts 1:13 And when they were come in, they went up into an upper room, where abode both Peter, and James, and John, and Andrew, Philip, and Thomas, Bartholomew, and Matthew, James [the son] of Alphaeus, and Simon Zelotes, and Judas [the brother] of James.
Acts 12:17 But he, beckoning unto them with the hand to hold their peace, declared unto them how the Lord had brought him out of the prison. And he said, Go shew these things unto James, and to the brethren. And he departed, and went into another place.
Acts 15:13 And after they had held their peace, James answered, saying, Men [and] brethren, hearken unto me:
Acts 21:18 And the [day] following Paul went in with us unto James; and all the elders were present.
Galatians 1:19 But other of the apostles saw I none, save James the Lord's brother.
Galatians 2:9 And when James, Cephas, and John, who seemed to be pillars, perceived the grace that was given unto me, they gave to me and Barnabas the right hands of fellowship; that we [should go] unto the heathen, and they unto the circumcision.
Galatians 2:12 For before that certain came from James, he did eat with the Gentiles: but when they were come, he withdrew and separated himself, fearing them which were of the circumcision.
Jude 1:1 Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, to them that are sanctified by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ, [and] called:

a servant:

John 12:26 If any man serve me, let him follow me; and where I am, there shall also my servant be: if any man serve me, him will [my] Father honour.
Romans 1:1 Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called [to be] an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God,
Philippians 1:1 Paul and Timotheus, the servants of Jesus Christ, to all the saints in Christ Jesus which are at Philippi, with the bishops and deacons:
Titus 1:1 Paul, a servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God's elect, and the acknowledging of the truth which is after godliness;
2 Peter 1:1 Simon Peter, a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ, to them that have obtained like precious faith with us through the righteousness of God and our Saviour Jesus Christ:

to:

Exodus 24:4 And Moses wrote all the words of the LORD, and rose up early in the morning, and builded an altar under the hill, and twelve pillars, according to the twelve tribes of Israel.
Exodus 28:21 And the stones shall be with the names of the children of Israel, twelve, according to their names, [like] the engravings of a signet; every one with his name shall they be according to the twelve tribes.
Exodus 39:14 And the stones [were] according to the names of the children of Israel, twelve, according to their names, [like] the engravings of a signet, every one with his name, according to the twelve tribes.
1 Kings 18:31 And Elijah took twelve stones, according to the number of the tribes of the sons of Jacob, unto whom the word of the LORD came, saying, Israel shall be thy name:
Ezra 6:17 And offered at the dedication of this house of God an hundred bullocks, two hundred rams, four hundred lambs; and for a sin offering for all Israel, twelve he goats, according to the number of the tribes of Israel.
Matthew 19:28 And Jesus said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That ye which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.
Acts 26:7 Unto which [promise] our twelve tribes, instantly serving [God] day and night, hope to come. For which hope's sake, king Agrippa, I am accused of the Jews.
Revelation 7:4 And I heard the number of them which were sealed: [and there were] sealed an hundred [and] forty [and] four thousand of all the tribes of the children of Israel.

scattered:

Leviticus 26:33 And I will scatter you among the heathen, and will draw out a sword after you: and your land shall be desolate, and your cities waste.
Deuteronomy 4:27 And the LORD shall scatter you among the nations, and ye shall be left few in number among the heathen, whither the LORD shall lead you.
Deuteronomy 28:64 And the LORD shall scatter thee among all people, from the one end of the earth even unto the other; and there thou shalt serve other gods, which neither thou nor thy fathers have known, [even] wood and stone.
Deuteronomy 30:3 That then the LORD thy God will turn thy captivity, and have compassion upon thee, and will return and gather thee from all the nations, whither the LORD thy God hath scattered thee.
Deuteronomy 32:26 I said, I would scatter them into corners, I would make the remembrance of them to cease from among men:
Esther 3:8 And Haman said unto king Ahasuerus, There is a certain people scattered abroad and dispersed among the people in all the provinces of thy kingdom; and their laws [are] diverse from all people; neither keep they the king's laws: therefore it [is] not for the king's profit to suffer them.
Ezekiel 12:15 And they shall know that I [am] the LORD, when I shall scatter them among the nations, and disperse them in the countries.
John 7:35 Then said the Jews among themselves, Whither will he go, that we shall not find him? will he go unto the dispersed among the Gentiles, and teach the Gentiles?
Acts 2:5 And there were dwelling at Jerusalem Jews, devout men, out of every nation under heaven.
Acts 8:1 And Saul was consenting unto his death. And at that time there was a great persecution against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judaea and Samaria, except the apostles.
Acts 15:21 For Moses of old time hath in every city them that preach him, being read in the synagogues every sabbath day.
1 Peter 1:1 Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to the strangers scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia,

greeting:

Acts 15:23 And they wrote [letters] by them after this manner; The apostles and elders and brethren [send] greeting unto the brethren which are of the Gentiles in Antioch and Syria and Cilicia:
Acts 23:26 Claudius Lysias unto the most excellent governor Felix [sendeth] greeting.
2 Timothy 4:21 Do thy diligence to come before winter. Eubulus greeteth thee, and Pudens, and Linus, and Claudia, and all the brethren.
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Chain-Reference Bible Search

Ex 24:4; 28:21; 39:14. Lv 26:33. Dt 4:27; 28:64; 30:3; 32:26. 1K 18:31. Ezr 6:17. Es 3:8. Ezk 12:15. Mt 10:3; 13:55; 19:28. Mk 3:18. Lk 6:15. Jn 7:35; 12:26. Ac 1:13; 2:5; 8:1; 12:17; 15:13, 21, 23; 21:18; 23:26; 26:7. Ro 1:1. Ga 1:19; 2:9, 12. Php 1:1. 2Ti 4:21. Tit 1:1. 1P 1:1. 2P 1:1. Jde 1:1. Rv 7:4.

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