Analysis of Literary Context
James O. Montford, Jr.
Grand Canyon University: (BIB 355)
August 24, 2011
Analysis of Literary Context
The intent of this paper is to analyze the literary context of the book of James, by giving an outline and summary of each chapter found in the book of The Epistle of James. This paper will give historical background and cultural information for the purpose that James the author wrote the book. This paper will attempt to tie in James 2:8-11 into the overall context of the book to find how and why James felt that these three verses were important to the entire book. The Epistle of James
The letter takes its name from its author James the brother of Jesus (Mt.13:55 and Mk 6:3). James became the leader in the Jerusalem church (Gal. 2:9, 12 and Acts 12:17). The original text was written in Greek around A.D.49 before the Jerusalem council held in A.D. 50. James wrote this letter to the First century Jewish Christians residing in a Gentile community outside Palestine. James purpose for writing this letter was to expose hypocritical practices of the church and to teach Christian correct behavior. This letter was originally a sermon by James prior to being martyred. It is believed that this sermon was rhetoric edited and distributed as a letter to churches everywhere. The settings that cause James to write this letter was he had a concern for the persecuted Christians who were once part of the Jerusalem church.
James was not one of the original disciples of Jesus; James was among the group gathered on Pentecost Acts 1:14. James took over leadership of the Jerusalem church after Peter left Palestine Acts 12:17. James seems to be more concern with Christians observing the Law. James was presided at the Jerusalem council Acts 15 where the church leaders reached an agreement for the basis of Christian fellowship.
I. The essence of true religion 1:1-27
I. True faith in practice 2:1-3:12
II. True Wisdom in practice 3:13-5:20
A. Chapter One
i. Greetings and Salutations 1:1
i. The Joy and Wisdom found in Trails and Testing 1:2-1-11 ii. Overcoming Temptation 1:12-1:27
James in chapter one want the reader to understand that there will test and trials. You must believe in the wisdom of God that patience will build a godly character in the life of those that believe. The product of your faith works in the essence of true religion. A. Chapter Two
i. The Dangers of Partiality 2:1-13 ii. Faith and Works in the life of a Christian 2:14-26
James in chapter two want his readers to understand that all are equal in Christ; the rich and the poor are two treated the same. James then wish that his readers understand that faith without works is dead. The lifestyle of a believer must combine the two that of the rich and that of the poor to have a godly lifestyle. The Old Testament shows a good example that the Christian faith is justified by works
A. Chapter Three
i. The Untamable Tongue 3:1-12
ii. Two Types of Wisdom 1:13-18
James describes in this chapter that the tongue is a very powerful entity of a believer and it must be control. James uses several examples to demonstrate how power the tongue can be and the fruit that the tongue produces. James closes that chapter with heavenly wisdom telling the believer that the wisdom of God helps us control our tongues and produce good fruit.
A Chapter Four
i. Pride 4:1- 6
ii. True Humility 4:7- 4:10
iii. Brotherly Love 4:11- 12
iii. Boasting 4:13-17
James compares pride and humility that these are two opposing forces of human nature. James...