James 5:7

James 5:7

Be patient therefore, brethren
The apostle here addresses himself to the poor who were oppressed by the rich men, and these he calls "brethren" of whom he was not ashamed; when he does not bestow this title upon the rich, though professors of the same religion: these poor brethren he advises to be patient under their sufferings, to bear them with patience,

unto the coming of the Lord;
not to destroy Jerusalem, but either at death, or at the last, judgment; when he will take vengeance on their oppressors, and deliver them from all their troubles, and put them into the possession of that kingdom, and glory, to which they are called; wherefore, in the mean while, he would have them be quiet and easy, not to murmur against God, nor seek to take vengeance on men, but leave it to God, to whom it belongs, who will judge his people:

behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth;
ripe fruit, which arises from the seed he sows in the earth; and which may be called "precious", because useful both to man and beast; see ( Deuteronomy 33:14-16 ) and between this, and the sowing of the seed, is a considerable time, during which the husbandman waits; and this may be an instruction in the present case:

and hath patience for it until he receive the early and latter rain;
the Jews had seldom rains any more than twice a year; the early, or former rain, was shortly after the feast of tabernacles F21, in the month Marchesvan, or October, when the seed was sown in the earth; and if it did not rain, they prayed for it, on the third or seventh day of the month F23; and the latter rain was in Nisan, or March {x}, just before harvest; and to this distinction the passage refers.


F21 Bartenora in Misn. Taanith, c. 1. sect. 2.
F23 T. Bab. Taanith, fol. 4. 2. & 6. 1. & 10. 1. & Bava Metzia, fol. 28. 1. Maimon. Tephilla, c. 2. sect. 16.
F24 Targum, Jarchi, Kimchi, & Miclol Jophi in Joel ii. 23. Vajikra Rabba, sect. 35. fol. 175. 3.