James 5:20

Let him know (ginwsketw). Present active imperative third person singular of ginwskw, but Westcott and Hort read ginwskete (know ye) after B. In either case it is the conclusion of the condition in verse Acts 19 . He which converteth (o epistrepsa). First aorist active articular participle of epistrepw of verse Acts 19 . From the error (ek planh). "Out of the wandering" of verse Acts 19 (planh, from which planaw is made). See 1 John 4:6 for contrast between "truth" and "error." A soul from death (psuchn ek qanatou). The soul of the sinner (amartwlon) won back to Christ, not the soul of the man winning him. A few MSS. have autou added (his soul), which leaves it ambiguous, but autou is not genuine. It is ultimate and final salvation here meant by the future (swsei). Shall cover a multitude of sins (kalupsei plhqo amartiwn). Future active of kaluptw, old verb, to hide, to veil. But whose sins (those of the converter or the converted)? The Roman Catholics (also Mayor and Ropes) take it of the sins of the converter, who thus saves himself by saving others. The language here will allow that, but not New Testament teaching in general. It is apparently a proverbial saying which Resch considers one of the unwritten sayings of Christ (Clem. Al. Paed. iii. 12). It occurs also in 1 Peter 4:8 , where it clearly means the sins of others covered by love as a veil thrown over them. The saying appears also in Proverbs 10:12 : "Hatred stirs up strife, but love hides all transgressions"--that is "love refuses to see faults" (Mayor admits). That is undoubtedly the meaning in 1 Peter 4:8 ; James 5:20 .