James 1:2

Count it (hghsasqe). First aorist middle imperative of hgeomai, old verb to consider. Do it now and once for all. All joy (pasan caran). "Whole joy," " unmixed joy," as in Philippians 2:29 . Not just "some joy" along with much grief. When (otan). "Whenever," indefinite temporal conjunction. Ye fall into (peripeshte). Second aorist active subjunctive (with the indefinite otan) from peripiptw, literally to fall around (into the midst of), to fall among as in Luke 10:30 lhstai periepesen (he fell among robbers). Only other N.T. example of this old compound is in Acts 27:41 . Thucydides uses it of falling into affliction. It is the picture of being surrounded (peri) by trials. Manifold temptations (peirasmoi poikiloi). Associative instrumental case. The English word temptation is Latin and originally meant trials whether good or bad, but the evil sense has monopolized the word in our modern English, though we still say "attempt." The word peirasmo (from peirazw, late form for the old peiraw as in Acts 26:21 , both in good sense as in John 6:6 , and in bad sense as in Matthew 16:1 ) does not occur outside of the LXX and the N.T. except in Dioscorides (A.D. 100?) of experiments on diseases. "Trials" is clearly the meaning here, but the evil sense appears in verse Matthew 12 (clearly in peirazw in verse Matthew 13 ) and so in Hebrews 3:8 . Trials rightly faced are harmless, but wrongly met become temptations to evil. The adjective poikilo (manifold) is as old as Homer and means variegated, many coloured as in Matthew 4:24 ; 2 Timothy 3:6 ; Hebrews 2:4 . In 1 Peter 1:6 we have this same phrase. It is a bold demand that James here makes.