James 2:17

17 So faith by itself, if it has no works, is dead.

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James 2:17 Meaning and Commentary

James 2:17

Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.
] It is like a lifeless carcass, a body without a soul, ( James 2:26 ) for as works, without faith, are dead works, so faith, without works, is a dead faith, and not like the lively hope and faith of regenerated persons: and indeed, such who have no other faith than this are dead in trespasses and sins; not that works are the life of faith, or that the life of faith lies in, and flows from works; but, as Dr. Ames observes F2, good works are second acts, necessarily flowing from the life of faith; to which may be added, and by these faith appears to be living, lively and active, or such who perform them appear to be true and living believers.


F2 Medulla Theolog. l. 2. c. 7. sect. 35.

James 2:17 In-Context

15 If a brother or sister is naked and lacks daily food,
16 and one of you says to them, "Go in peace; keep warm and eat your fill," and yet you do not supply their bodily needs, what is the good of that?
17 So faith by itself, if it has no works, is dead.
18 But someone will say, "You have faith and I have works." Show me your faith apart from your works, and I by my works will show you my faith.
19 You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder.

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