"Unspotted From The World"

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Last Updated on May 24, 2015, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 133

Context: James, variously identified as the apostle James, son of Zebedee, the second apostle James, often called "James the less," and James, the brother of Jesus, speaking as head of the Church in Jerusalem and writing to give moral instruction to the twelve tribes of Israel, proclaims tribulation as a cause of joy and patience, the efficacy of prayer, the danger of riches, the impossibility of temptation by God, and the good that comes from Him. Urging the control of self but also the importance of an active rather than a passive nature, he gives as the two qualities of pure religion compassion and unworldliness:

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Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.

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