The Catholic Epistle of St. James the Apostle (Author James)

3:1¤ Be ye not many masters, my brethren, knowing that you receive the greater judgment.

3:2For in many things we all offend. If any man offend not in word, the same is a perfect man. He is able also with a bridle to lead about the whole body.

3:3For if we put bits into the mouths of horses, that they may obey us: and we turn about their whole body.

3:4Behold also ships, whereas they are great and are driven by strong winds, yet are they turned about with a small helm, whithersoever the force of the governor willeth.

3:5Even so the tongue is indeed a little member and boasteth great things. Behold how small a fire kindleth a great wood.

3:6And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity. The tongue is placed among our members, which defileth the whole body and inflameth the wheel of our nativity, being set on fire by hell.

3:7For every nature of beasts and of birds and of serpents and of the rest is tamed and hath been tamed, by the nature of man.

3:8But the tongue no man can tame, an unquiet evil, full of deadly poison.

3:9By it we bless God and the Father: and by it we curse men who are made after the likeness of God.

3:10Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be.

3:11Doth a fountain send forth, out of the same hole, sweet and bitter water?

3:12Can the fig tree, my brethren, bear grapes? Or the vine, figs? So neither can the salt water yield sweet.

3:13Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge, among you? Let him shew, by a good conversation, his work in the meekness of wisdom.

3:14But if you have bitter zeal, and there be contention in your hearts: glory not and be not liars against the truth.

3:15For this is not wisdom, descending from above: but earthly, sensual, devilish.

3:16For where envying and contention is: there is inconstancy and every evil work.

3:17But the wisdom that is from above, first indeed is chaste, then peaceable, modest, easy to be persuaded, consenting to the good, full of mercy and good fruits, without judging, without dissimulation.

3:18And the fruit of justice is sown in peace, to them that make peace.

4:1¤ From whence are wars and contentions among you? Are they not hence, from your concupiscences, which war in your members?

4:2You covet, and have not: you kill and envy and cannot obtain. You contend and war, and you have not: because you ask not.

4:3You ask and receive not: because you ask amiss, that you may consume it on your concupiscences.

4:4Adulterers, know you not that the friendship of this world is the enemy of God? Whosoever therefore will be a friend of this world becometh an enemy of God.

4:5Or do you think that the scripture saith in vain: To envy doth the spirit covet which dwelleth in you?

4:6But he giveth greater grace. Wherefore he saith: God resisteth the proud and giveth grace to the humble.

4:7Be subject therefore to God. But resist the devil: and he will fly from you.

4:8Draw nigh to God: and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners, and purify your hearts, ye double minded.

4:9Be afflicted and mourn and weep: let your laughter be turned into mourning and your joy into sorrow.

4:10Be humbled in the sight of the Lord: and he will exalt you.

4:11Detract not one another, my brethren. He that detracteth his brother, or he that judgeth his brother, detracteth the law and judgeth the law. But if thou judge the law, thou art not a doer of the law, but a judge.

4:12There is one lawgiver and judge, that is able to destroy and to deliver.

4:13But who art thou that judgest thy neighbour? Behold, now you that say: To-day or to-morrow we will go into such a city, and there we will spend a year and will traffic and make our gain.

4:14Whereas you know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is a vapour which appeareth for a little while and afterwards shall vanish away.

4:15For that you should say: If the Lord will, and, If we shall live, we will do this or that.

4:16But now you rejoice in your arrogancies. All such rejoicing is wicked.

4:17To him therefore who knoweth to do good and doth it not, to him it is sin.

5:1¤ Go to now, ye rich men: weep and howl in your miseries, which shall come upon you.

5:2Your riches are corrupted: and your garments are motheaten.

5:3Your gold and silver is cankered: and the rust of them shall be for a testimony against you and shall eat your flesh like fire. You have stored up to yourselves wrath against the last days.

5:4Behold the hire of the labourers who have reaped down your fields, which by fraud has been kept back by you, crieth: and the cry of them hath entered into the ears of the Lord of Sabaoth.

5:5You have feasted upon earth: and in riotousness you have nourished your hearts, in the day of slaughter.

5:6You have condemned and put to death the Just One: and he resisted you not.

5:7Be patient therefore, brethren, until the coming of the Lord. Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth: patiently bearing till he receive the early and latter rain.

5:8Be you therefore also patient and strengthen your hearts: for the coming of the Lord is at hand.

5:9Grudge not, brethren, one against another, that you may not be judged. Behold the judge standeth before the door.

5:10Take, my brethren, for an example of suffering evil, of labour and patience, the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord.

5:11Behold, we account them blessed who have endured. You have heard of the patience of Job and you have seen the end of the Lord, that the Lord is merciful and compassionate.

5:12But above all things, my brethren, swear not, neither by heaven, nor by the earth, nor by any other oath. But let your speech be: Yea, Yea: No, No: that you fall not under judgment.

5:13Is any of you sad? Let him pray: Is he cheerful in mind? Let him sing.

5:14Is any man sick among you? Let him bring in the priests of the church and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord.

5:15And the prayer of faith shall save the sick man. And the Lord shall raise him up: and if he be in sins, they shall be forgiven him.

5:16Confess therefore your sins one to another: and pray one for another, that you may be saved. For the continual prayer of a just man availeth much.

5:17Elias was a man passible like unto us: and with prayer he prayed that it might not rain upon the earth. And it rained not for three years and six months.

5:18And he prayed again. And the heaven gave rain: and the earth brought forth her fruit.

5:19My brethren, if any of you err from the truth and one convert him:

5:20He must know that he who causeth a sinner to be converted from the error of his way shall save his soul from death and shall cover a multitude of sins.

Original from Project Gutenberg - Massive cleanup of OCR problems and editing done locally.