F.B. Hole

1 John 5

When we contemplate the responsibilities which are ours in connection with our brethren, we are always apt, if the flesh prevails with us, to fall back upon Cain's question, asking, "Am I my brother's keeper?" Not exactly his keeper perhaps, but we certainly are to be his helper in the spirit of love. We are also apt to fall back upon a question similar to the one asked by the lawyer in Luke 10. Wishing to justify himself, he asked, "And who is my neighbour?" We may ask, "And wh...

1 Peter 3

The opening verses of chapter 3 continue the exhortation to submission. The apostle commenced this exhortation at 1 Peter 2: 13. In verse 18 he applied it to those who socially are in the subject place. Now he applies it to those who hold the subject place in that great natural relationship which is the foundation of all human relationships. The Christian wife is to be in subjection to her husband. If he is a Christian he obeys the word and she obeys him. A most excellent ...

1 Peter 2

The latter verses of chapter 1 have shown us that the new birth which has taken place with each believer has a purifying effect, therefore the first verse of chapter 2 takes it for granted that we lay aside those ugly features which are the nature of the flesh in us. Of the things specified, malice, envy and evil speakings specially concern our relations with our fellows, and they are particularly mentioned because Peter is now going to bring before us truth which shows us the believer ...

1 Peter 1

Commencing then our reading of the Epistle, we find the opening address in verses 1 and 2. To whom does he write? To "strangers scattered" or "sojourners of the dispersion," to people who were a standing witness to the fact that the Jew had forfeited his ancient privileges, to folk who had lost all the earthly foothold they ever had, though it was a big foothold as originally granted. Yet the sojourners he addressed were not by any means all the scattered Jews of those provinces, but su...

Introduction to 1 Peter

We begin by noticing certain features which characterize the whole epistle:- 1. It is definitely called in its heading a general or catholic epistle, inasmuch as it is not written to any particular church, nor to an individual, as most of the others. 2. It definitely addresses the "strangers scattered" in the provinces of Asia Minor, yet "elect"-i.e., Peter writes to converted people of his own nation scattered throughout the regions to the north of Palestine. Peter was t...

James 5

In the closing verses of chapter 4 James was addressing those of his own people belonging to the prosperous commercial class, who professed to receive Jesus as their Lord. In the opening of the fifth chapter his thoughts turn to the rich Jews, and these, as we have before mentioned, were almost to a man found amongst the unbelieving majority. In the first six verses he has some severe and even scorching things to say about them, and to them. The accusation he brings against them is...

James 4

The last note struck, as we closed chapter 3 was that of peace. The first note of chapter 4 is the exact opposite, that of war. What lay behind the peace was the purity that is the first mark of the wisdom that is from above. So now we discover that what lies behind the wars and fightings, which are so common among the professed people of God, is the impure lust of the human heart, the lust connected with that wisdom which is earthly, sensual, devilish. You will notice that the ...

James 3

With chapter 3 a fresh series of exhortations commences. James turns from the subject of the works of faith to exhort his brethren against the very common failing of wishing to be a master of others when one has in no sense learned to be master of oneself. The word translated "masters" really signifies "teachers," and if we glance at Romans 2: 17-21 we shall see that the Jew especially fancied himself in this direction, and when converted the same tendency would doubtless remain in him....

James 2

These early Jewish Christians were far too much controlled by the ordinary thoughts of the world, and as a consequence of being spotted by the world, they despised the poor. They should have been controlled by the faith of the Lord Jesus, and not by the standards and customs of the world. Though he was the Lord of Glory yet He ever stooped to the poor and the fatherless. Poverty and need may be incompatible with human glory, but they are quite compatible with Divine glory. As a con...

James 1

The epistle is not written to any particular assembly of believers, nor even to the whole church of God. It is addressed rather to "the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad," and it is this which accounts for its unusual character. Let us attempt to seize the view-point from 'which James speaks before we consider any of its details. Although the Gospel began at Jerusalem and there won its earliest triumphs, the Christians of that city were slower than others in entering into the ...
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