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Catholic Dictionary




Traditionally attributed to James the Less, "the brother of the Lord." It was written in Greek, and its style and language were typically Jewish, indicating that it was originally intended for converts from Judaism. Its main stress is on the moral conduct of Christians, notably their perseverance under trial, respect for the poor, and the need to bridle one's tongue. It is especially clear on the duty of living one's faith and not merely professing it (James 2:14-26). Among the good works binding on Christians, the practice of charity and the avoidance of conflict are primary (James 4:1-12). (Etym. Anglicized form of Hebrew, Jacob, through Spanish Jaime.)