James 1:22

22 But be 1doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.

James 1:22 Meaning and Commentary

James 1:22

But be ye doers of the word
And they are such, who spiritually understand it; gladly receive it; and from the heart obey it, and make a sincere and ingenuous profession of it; and who submit to the ordinances it directs to, and keep them as they have been delivered; and live, and walk, becoming their profession of it. The Arabic and Ethiopic versions read, "be ye doers of the law"; and so one of Stephens's copies, as in ( Romans 2:13 )

and not hearers only;
though the word should be heard swiftly and readily, and received with meekness; yet it should not be barely heard, and assented to; but what is heard should be put in practice; and especially men should not depend upon their hearing, as if that would save them; this is deceiving your own selves; such as rest upon the outward hearing of the word will be sadly deceived, and will find themselves miserably mistaken, another day; see ( Luke 13:25 Luke 13:26 ) . Arguments taken from hence are like the sophisms, paralogisms, and false reasonings of sophisters, which carry a fair show, and ensnare and deceive.

James 1:22 In-Context

20 for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God.
21 Therefore put away all filthiness and rampant wickedness and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls.
22 But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.
23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror.
24 For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like.

Cross References 1

  • 1. Romans 2:13; [James 2:14-20; Matt. 7:21, 24-27; Luke 8:21; John 13:17]
The English Standard Version is published with the permission of Good News Publishers.