If you wrote a letter to people you didn’t know, or you didn’t know that well, how would you describe yourself? What things would be most important for them to know about you?
Read James 1:1
This letter is from James, a slave of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ. I am writing to the “twelve tribes”—Jewish believers scattered abroad. Greetings!
Slave (1:1): This could be either a slave who belongs to his master or a bond-servant who sold himself into slavery for a set period of time for a chance to enter in the master’s household.
Twelve tribes—Jewish believers scattered abroad (1:1): The most literal interpretation would be Jewish Christians among “the diaspora,” most likely referring to a group of Jewish-Christian congregations somewhere outside Israel. This can also be a figurative way of talking about all Christians as the true Israel scattered among the unbelieving nations as in 1 Peter 1:1.
James was a very important person in the early Church, and yet he describes himself as a slave. How does James’ description of himself effect the way you understand this letter, yourself, and your mission in life?
Ask God to help you understand how the words you use to describe yourself either help or hinder you as you journey through life as a follower of Jesus.