World Wide Study Bible

Study

a Bible passage

Click a verse to see commentary

Patience in Suffering

7 Be patient, therefore, beloved, until the coming of the Lord. The farmer waits for the precious crop from the earth, being patient with it until it receives the early and the late rains. 8You also must be patient. Strengthen your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is near. 9Beloved, do not grumble against one another, so that you may not be judged. See, the Judge is standing at the doors! 10As an example of suffering and patience, beloved, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord. 11Indeed we call blessed those who showed endurance. You have heard of the endurance of Job, and you have seen the purpose of the Lord, how the Lord is compassionate and merciful.


Select a resource above

7. Be patient therefore—as judgment is so near (Jas 5:1, 3), ye may well afford to be "patient" after the example of the unresisting Just one (Jas 5:6).

brethren—contrasted with the "rich" oppressors, Jas 5:1-6.

unto the coming of the Lord—Christ, when the trial of your patience shall cease.

husbandman waiteth for—that is, patiently bears toils and delays through hope of the harvest at last. Its "preciousness" (compare Ps 126:6, "precious seed") will more than compensate for all the past. Compare the same image, Ga 6:3, 9.

hath long patience for it—"over it," in respect to it.

until he receive—"until it receive" [Alford]. Even if English Version be retained, the receiving of the early and latter rains is not to be understood as the object of his hope, but the harvest for which those rains are the necessary preliminary. The early rain fell at sowing time, about November or December; the latter rain, about March or April, to mature the grain for harvest. The latter rain that shall precede the coming spiritual harvest, will probably be another Pentecost-like effusion of the Holy Ghost.

8. coming … draweth nigh—The Greek expresses present time and a settled state. 1Pe 4:7, "is at hand." We are to live in a continued state of expectancy of the Lord's coming, as an event always nigh. Nothing can more "stablish the heart" amidst present troubles than the realized expectation of His speedy coming.

9. Grudge not—rather "Murmur not"; "grumble not." The Greek is literally, "groan": a half-suppressed murmur of impatience and harsh judgment, not uttered aloud or freely. Having exhorted them to patience in bearing wrongs from the wicked, he now exhorts them to a forbearing spirit as to the offenses given by brethren. Christians, who bear the former patiently, sometimes are impatient at the latter, though much less grievous.

lest … condemned—The best manuscript authorities read, "judged." James refers to Mt 7:1, "Judge not lest ye be judged." To "murmur against one another" is virtually to judge, and so to become liable to be judged.

judge … before the door—referring to Mt 24:33. The Greek is the same in both passages, and so ought to be translated here as there, "doors," plural. The phrase means "near at hand" (Ge 4:7), which in the oldest interpretations [Targums of Jonathan and Jerusalem] is explained, "thy sin is reserved unto the judgment of the world to come." Compare "the everlasting doors" (Ps 24:7, whence He shall come forth). The Lord's coming to destroy Jerusalem is primarily referred to; and ultimately, His coming again visibly to judgment.

10. the prophets—who were especially persecuted, and therefore were especially "blessed."

example of suffering affliction—rather, simply, "of affliction," literally, "evil treatment."

11. count them happy—(Mt 5:10).

which endure—The oldest authorities read, "which have endured," which suits the sense better than English Version: "Those who in past days, like the prophets and Job, have endured trials." Such, not those who "have lived in pleasure and been wanton on the earth" (Jas 5:5), are "happy."

patience—rather, "endurance," answering to "endure": the Greek words similarly corresponding. Distinct from the Greek word for "patience" Jas 5:10. The same word ought to be translated, "endurance," Jas 1:3. He here reverts to the subject which he began with.

Job—This passage shows the history of him is concerning a real, not an imaginary person; otherwise his case could not be quoted as an example at all. Though he showed much of impatience, yet he always returned to this, that he committed himself wholly to God, and at last showed a perfect spirit of enduring submission.

and have seen—(with the eyes of your mind). Alford translates from the old and genuine reading, "see also," &c. The old reading is, however, capable of being translated as English Version.

the end of the Lord—the end which the Lord gave. If Job had much to "endure," remember also Job's happy "end." Hence, learn, though much tried, to "endure to the end."

thatAlford and others translate, "inasmuch as," "for."

pitiful … of tender mercy—The former refers to the "feeling"; the latter, to the act. His pity is shown in not laying on the patient endurer more trials than he is able to bear; His mercy, in His giving a happy "end" to the trials [Bengel].




Advertisements