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The Blue Letter Bible

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Overview Outline of James

Heavenly Wisdom for Persevering in Your Faith—even in the Midst of Severe Trials

  1. Introduction (Jas 1:1)
    1. The author
    2. The audience
    3. The address
  2. Cling to God’s wisdom in the midst of your trials, rather than your own (Jas 1:2-15)
    1. Rejoice in the divine purpose of your trials (Jas 1:2-4)
    2. Request divine wisdom to endure your trials with joy (Jas 1:5-8)
    3. Remember that a poor believer has more to boast in than a rich man who only has his temporal possessions (Jas 1:9-11)
    4. Recognize the purpose and source of your trials (Jas 1:12-15)
  3. Cling to God’s goodness and grace in the midst of your trials (Jas 1:16-18)
    1. Cling to God’s goodness (Jas 1:16-17)
    2. Cling to God’s grace (Jas 1:18)
  4. Concern yourself with obedience to God’s Word in the midst of your trials (Jas 1:19-27)
    1. Listen to God’s Word rather than lash out in anger (Jas 1:19-21)
    2. Live God’s Word rather than merely hear it (Jas 1:22-27)
  5. Cultivate genuine love, rather than favor the wealthy over the poor (Jas 2:1-13)
    1. The precept: do not hold your faith with an attitude of personal favoritism (Jas 2:1)
    2. The picture: two visitors—one dressed in fine clothes, the other dressed in dirty clothes (Jas 2:2-3)
    3. The points to consider (Jas 2:4-13)
  6. Confess your faith by how you live—not just by what you say (Jas 2:14-26)
    1. The proposition: faith without works is dead (Jas 2:14-17)
    2. The proof: faith without works is dead (Jas 2:18-25)
    3. The proposition restated: faith without works is dead (Jas 2:26)
  7. Control your tongue (Jas 3:1-12)
    1. Consider the cost of becoming a teacher (Jas 3:1-2)
    2. Consider the power of the tongue (Jas 3:3-12)
  8. Check the fruit of your wisdom (Jas 3:13-18)
    1. Behavior reveals the origin of your wisdom (Jas 3:13)
    2. Bitter jealousy and selfish ambition characterize worldly, demonic wisdom (Jas 3:14-16)
    3. Benevolence, righteousness, and peace characterize heavenly wisdom (Jas 3:17-18)
  9. Come to God in humility for the wisdom that produces divine peace (Jas 4:1-10)
    1. Diagnose the source of conflicts among you (Jas 4:1-3)
    2. Determine who you want to be your friend—the world or God (Jas 4:4-6)
    3. Draw near to God in repentance and humility (Jas 4:7-10)
  10. Control the urge to judge others (Jas 4:11-12)
    1. The command: do not speak against one another (Jas 4:11a)
    2. The consequences of not heeding the command: when you speak against others you are playing God (Jas 4:11b-12)
  11. Consider your own plans as subject to divine change (Jas 4:13-17)
    1. You do not know what your tomorrow holds (Jas 4:13-14)
    2. You do know Who holds your tomorrow (Jas 4:15)
    3. You demonstrate who you hold on to [trust in], by what you say and what you do (Jas 4:16-17)
  12. Consider the consequences of trusting in earthly riches (Jas 5:1-6)
    1. Consider the sorrows of those who trust in earthly riches (Jas 5:1-3)
    2. Consider the sins of those who trust in earthly riches (Jas 5:4-6)
  13. Cultivate patient endurance as you wait for the Lord’s return (Jas 5:7-11)
    1. The precept: be patient until the coming of the Lord (Jas 4:7a)
    2. The pictures: the farmer, the prophet, the patriarch Job (Jas 4:7b-11)
  14. Carry all of life to the Lord in prayer (Jas 5:12-18)
    1. Speak with integrity in every situation (Jas 5:12)
    2. Seek the Lord in every situation (Jas 5:13-18)
  15. Correct the straying brother, and turn him back to the truth (Jas 5:19-20)
    1. The caution: we are all prone to wander (Jas 5:19a)
    2. The concern: we should seek to deliver a wandering brother (Jas 5:19b)
    3. The consequences (Jas 5:20)
Part Three—New Covenant Faith in Jesus, the Son of God, is the Only Acceptable Way to Worship God (Heb 10:19-13:25) ← Prior Section
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