My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials. James 1:2 (NKJV)

Scholars believe the book of James as one of the first New Testament books to be written. The apostle James wrote to believers forced to live outside Jerusalem. Because of the political and religious unrest of the city, Roman officials banished the early Christians.

Peter, James, and John had been with them on a daily basis—teaching and encouraging them in the faith. James knew that their exile would become a point of discouragement and doubt. Therefore, he dealt with those issues immediately in the opening of his letter.

When trouble comes, one of the first things you want to do is to guard against doubt. Faith helped those believers get through such horrendous times, and many times that is all you and I have to combat discouragement. Through Jesus Christ, it is more than enough.

The church survived those dark times to become what it is today. Without those tenacious believers we would not have the heritage of faith we so richly enjoy. Who is the beneficiary of your faith? Is it a son or daughter, a niece or nephew? Maybe a grandchild needs to see your faith in Christ. When you place your trust in the Lord, He always comes through in a mighty way.

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