James 1:16 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

James 1:16, NIV: "Don't be deceived, my dear brothers and sisters."

James 1:16, ESV: "Do not be deceived, my beloved brothers."

James 1:16, KJV: "Do not err, my beloved brethren."

James 1:16, NASB: "Do not be deceived, my beloved brothers and sisters."

James 1:16, NLT: "So don't be misled, my dear brothers and sisters."

James 1:16, CSB: "Don't be deceived, my dear brothers and sisters."

What does James 1:16 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

What temptations do Christians face when trials come into our lives? James has identified one temptation in the previous verses: to blame God. We want to accuse Him of inspiring our desire to sin, as though He is using hardship to tempt us to move away from Himself. James made it clear: that is not who God is. God doesn't do that. In the next verse, James will emphasize that God is, in fact, the giver of every good gift.

First, though, he begs with his readers not to let themselves be deceived. Again, he is talking about how we talk to ourselves. At the beginning of his letter, he wrote that we should tell ourselves that trials are ultimately joyful things. Even while they are hurting us, the struggles we face give us the chance to trust God more deeply. We use difficult times to grow our spiritual strength.

Here, James urges us to be careful how we talk to ourselves about the good things in our lives. Emotions are powerful things, but they are not outside of our control. Our feelings often follow the lead of our perspective. When we remind ourselves of the truth, we are more likely to trust in it. It matters immensely that we tell ourselves the truth about God and His care for us.