Salvation by Grace

by Matthew W. Bassford Recently, I have become an even louder proponent of grace, indeed of the naked necessity of grace, than I ever was before. I can tell from the comments I’ve been getting on social media that this has made some good brethren nervous. They reply with variations of, “Yes, but you have…

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Justification by Works in James

by Matthew W. Bassford Earlier, I wrote about Paul’s discussion of justification by works in the first four chapters of Romans. In it, he says that justification by works requires perfect obedience to God, which no one but Jesus has achieved. Thus, Christians must seek salvation by faith apart from works. Similarly, baptism for the…

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Was James written before Acts?

Question: Was James written before Acts? Answer: In order to date any book, we must consider what we know about the author and the clues that might date the book. Author The author of the book of James is debated as there are several James in the Bible. The name “James” derived from the Greek…

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Who were the twelve tribes scattered abroad?

Question: Good day sir, I was wondering, if the church replaced Israel, then who was James writing to in James 1:1 when he said the twelve tribes scattered abroad? Answer: “James, a bond-servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, To the twelve tribes who are dispersed abroad: Greetings” (James 1:1). The book of…

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James on Trials

https://www.lavistachurchofchrist.org/cms/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/JamesOnTrials.mp3 by Jeffrey W. Hamilton Text: James 1:1-27   I.         The book of James is written to Jewish Christians who were scattered by persecution – Acts 8:1-4             A.        This is one indication that James is one of the first books written             B.        It is that persecution that sets up the theme for the first part of the book…

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Why does James say we will be judged by the law of liberty?

Question: I’m having some difficulties understanding James 2:8-13. When he talks about the royal law in verses 8-11, it clearly refers to some of the ten commandments. But I get confused in verse 12 “So speak and so act, as those who are to be judged by the law of liberty.” How does this verse…

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A Comparison of Romans 4 and James 2:14-26

by Jim Sasser Recently, we have been listening to a speaker on this radio station discussing the 4th chapter of Romans as compared to the 2nd chapter of James. It was obvious, from some of his statements, that he was trying to make Paul teach salvation by faith only and at the same time cause…

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Where does it say that Salome was James and John’s mother?

Question: Where does it say that Salome was James and John’s mother? Answer: “And many women who followed Jesus from Galilee, ministering to Him, were there looking on from afar, among whom were Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James and Joses, and the mother of Zebedee’s sons” (Matthew 27:55-56). “There were also women looking…

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I was pleased to read your outline on the sons of thunder

Question: I am a member of the church of Christ. We studied John and James briefly tonight during the invitation. I remembered them being the “sons of thunder”, that got me searching in Google and I think your website was the first one that came up. Now, you never know what one might get when…

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