Modern English Version
Warning Against Partiality
2 My brothers, have faith in our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, without partiality. 2 For if a man with a gold ring, in fine clothing, comes into your assembly, and also a poor man in ragged clothing comes in, 3 and you have respect for him who wears the fine clothing and say to him, “Sit here in a good place,” and say to the poor, “Stand there,” or “Sit here under my footstool,” 4 have you not then become partial among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts?
5 Listen, my beloved brothers. Has God not chosen the poor of this world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom which He has promised to those who love Him? 6 But you have despised the poor. Do not rich men oppress you and drag you before the judgment seats? 7 Do they not blaspheme that worthy name by which you are called?
8 If you fulfill the royal law according to the Scripture, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself,”[a] you are doing well. 9 But if you show partiality, you are committing sin and are convicted by the law as sinners. 10 For whoever shall keep the whole law and yet offend in one point is guilty of breaking the whole law. 11 For He who said, “Do not commit adultery,”[b] also said, “Do not kill.”[c] Now if you do not commit adultery, yet you kill, you have become a lawbreaker.
12 So speak and so do as those who will be judged by the law of liberty. 13 For he who has shown no mercy will have judgment without mercy, for mercy triumphs over judgment.
Faith and Works
14 What does it profit, my brothers, if a man says he has faith but has no works? Can faith save him? 15 If a brother or sister is naked and lacking daily food, 16 and one of you says to them, “Depart in peace, be warmed and filled,” and yet you give them nothing that the body needs, what does it profit? 17 So faith by itself, if it has no works, is dead.
18 But a man may say, “You have faith and I have works.”
Show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. 19 You believe that there is one God; you do well. The demons also believe and tremble.
20 But do you want to be shown, O foolish man, that faith without works is dead? 21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered his son Isaac on the altar? 22 Do you see how faith worked with his works, and by works faith was made perfect? 23 The Scripture was fulfilled which says, “Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness,”[d] and he was called the friend of God. 24 You see then how by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.
25 Likewise, was not Rahab the prostitute justified by works when she received the messengers and sent them out another way? 26 As the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead.