He who speaks against a brother or judges his brother, speaks against the law and judges the law; but if you judge the law, you are not a doer of the law but a judge of it. Ezekiel 18:25. ὁ καταλαλῶν κ. τ. λ. assigns the reason of the exhortation. The writer of the Epistle is finding fault on two counts; firstly, the fact of the brethren speaking against one another at all, and secondly, their presuming to decide what was and what was not Torah-observance.— καταλαλεῖ νόμου καὶ κρίνει νόμον: the reason why speaking against and judging a brother is equivalent to doing the same to the Law is because the Law has been misinterpreted and misapplied; the Law had, in fact, been maligned; it had been made out to be something that it was not. Here the moral law applied in its spiritual fullness by Christ: "the law of liberty.". By reviling and condemning one’s brother, the law of love itself is reviled and condemned, whilst it is thereby disclaimed as not lawfully existing, and, as may be added, its tendency to save and not to destroy is condemned (Lange). "Do not slander each other because of your opinions in religion," Whoever. [12] There is only one lawgiver … James 2:8; νόμος τῆς ἐλευθερίας, James 1:25), and judgeth the law (viz. ΄ὴ καταλαλεῖτε ἀλλήλων, ἀδελφοί, etc. This bad use of the tongue is treated in several verses of the preceding chapter. There are some that are neither able to save nor to destroy; there are others able to destroy, but cannot save. He that speaketh evil of his brother and judgeth his brother. https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/james-4.html. It is a warning against evil speaking and slandering. Speak not evil, &c.— St. James here returns to what he had touched upon, ch. Lord, You alone can judge the thoughts of the heart and I have no right to condemn others, through my own self-righteous attitude. but if thou judge the law, thou art not a doer of the law, but a judge: by condemning thy fellow-men, thou steppest out of thy province, which is not to judge the law, but to obey it. 11  Speak not evil one of another, brethren. 1874-1909. Thus they exclude themselves from being judges. Now, that ought to cause a "shiver in yes timbers" as the pirates used to say - well the Hollywood pirates at least. 11. BibliographyBeza, Theodore. He not only warns against 'speaking evil' but explains that 'evil speech' is a sin. It is not for the individual Christian to anticipate the change which time would bring. He that speaketh evil of his brother, judgeth his brother; speaketh evil of the law, and judgeth the law. "Commentary on James 4:11". The evil here referred to is that of talking against others - against their actions, their motives, their manner of living, their families, etc. American Tract Society. Of coarse, all evil speaking is not here forbidden; we are bound to direct attention to the wicked, as a warning to others; but the evil speaking which St. James here condemns, is sinful censuring; judging the motives and character of men; pretending to see into their hearts, and discerning the motives of their actions; condemning them without good reason from prejudice and envy, and thus usurping the judicial authority of God. What it is to judge or condemn a divine law, see Genesis 3:4-5. Speak not evil means to say that which slanders another and injures his reputation. 9  Be afflicted, and mourn, and weep: let your laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heaviness. Some suppose that by this is meant that he who judges his brother, judges the law by setting himself above it, pronouncing on its observance or non-observance by another (Alford). . But neither are we to act from suspicion or from mere appearance or personal dislike. The thought, of course, was suggested to him by Matthew 7:1 f. BibliographyPeake, Arthur. Speak not one against another, brethren. We say that we can do what we want - we don"t have to follow the law giver - God. "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". (2 Timothy 2:24-25). Criticism that is generated by envy, jealousy, and selfish ambition. To get what James 4:11 means based on its source text, scroll down or follow these links for the original scriptural meaning , biblical context and relative popularity. .—Punctuate thus: He that speaketh evil of his brother, judgeth his brother; speaketh evil of the law, and judgeth the law. Plato commendeth that law of the Lydians, that punisheth detractors like as they did murderers. Do not speak against one another, brethren He who speaks against a brother or judges his brother, speaks against the law and judges the law; but if you judge the law, you are not a doer of the law but a judge of it. if thou judge the law, thou art not a doer … but a judge—Setting aside the Christian brotherhood as all alike called to be doers of the law, in subjection to it, such a one arrogates the office of a judge. He who in a censorious spirit judges his brother, sets at nought this law of love, and thus speaks evil of it, or undervalues it. One of the commandments is not to bear false witness against another ( Exodus 20:16), and the same is taught in many places in the New Testament ( Matthew 19:18; Romans 13:9). However, we are not instructed to judge the thoughts, hearts, motives, and behaviour of others - as it degrades our own testimony and dishonours the Lord, Who is the only one worthy to judge the thoughts of the heart and the actions of a man. They who set up a claim to a right to judge the conduct of others, should be certain that they understand the nature of religion themselves. Popularity rankings are based on search volume data from the Google AdWords Keyword Planner tool. "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". "Not under law but under grace" is not a denial that men must obey the law of Christ, but rather emphasizes the grace and liberty of Christ's law contrasted with Judaism. (Of course if they are blatantly and unrepentantly openly scorning the Law that will be a different matter. The law in view probably refers to God"s law generally in view of the context. "The Bible Study New Testament". James 4:11 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓] James 4:11, NIV: "Brothers and sisters, do not slander one another.Anyone who speaks against a brother or sister or judges them speaks against the law and judges it. The next two sections () and (4:13-17) are related to what has been previously said. 12  There is one lawgiver, who is able to save and to destroy: who art thou that judgest another? All such boasting is evil. Then it will be God Who is passing judgment. But “to take the law into one’s own hands” is to break it, and administer inequitably. For hypocrisy is always presumptuous, and we are by nature hypocrites, fondly exalting ourselves by calumniating others. he considers it unworthy to be kept, and that it is no sin to break it. James lays out the principles and practice of godly speech. These words, as generally delivered by our apostle, are a disuasive from the sin of detraction, or speaking evil of one another, either by secret whispering, or open backbiting; a very common but most unbecoming sin amongst Christians. "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". We are called to be doers of the Word and not hearers only. "Do not speak against one another"-"Do not malign one another" (Ber). The word may however be used in a larger sense to denote anyone - a brother of the human race. He that speaketh evil of his brother and judgeth his brother. Speak not evil, &c.] As Ezekiel’s hearers did of him "by the walls, and in the doors of the houses," Ezekiel 33:30, and as too many of ours do; for the which they will be full dearly accountable. BibliographyRobertson, A.T. "Commentary on James 4:11". The figure Ploce. Keep me from being 'wise in my own conceit', or making arbitrary assumptions about the motives of others and above all, teach me to love others as Christ loved me, for in so doing I will honour Your name, as Christ lives in and through me. Follow either of the two large buttons below to see these verses in their broader context of the King James Bible or a Bible concordance. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged’ (Matthew 7:1). Copyright StatementThese files are public domain.

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