James 1:17
Parallel Verses
New International Version
Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.

New Living Translation
Whatever is good and perfect comes down to us from God our Father, who created all the lights in the heavens. He never changes or casts a shifting shadow.

English Standard Version
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.

New American Standard Bible
Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.

King James Bible
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Every generous act and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights; with Him there is no variation or shadow cast by turning.

International Standard Version
Every generous act of giving and every perfect gift is from above and comes down from the Father who made the heavenly lights, in whom there is no inconsistency or shifting shadow.

NET Bible
All generous giving and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or the slightest hint of change.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
Every good and perfect gift descends from above, from The Father of lights with whom there is no change nor a shadow of variation.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Every good present and every perfect gift comes from above, from the Father who made the sun, moon, and stars. The Father doesn't change like the shifting shadows produced by the sun and the moon.

Jubilee Bible 2000
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness neither shadow of turning.

King James 2000 Bible
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.

American King James Version
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom is no ficklenss, neither shadow of turning.

American Standard Version
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom can be no variation, neither shadow that is cast by turning.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Every best gift, and every perfect gift, is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no change, nor shadow of alteration.

Darby Bible Translation
Every good gift and every perfect gift comes down from above, from the Father of lights, with whom is no variation nor shadow of turning.

English Revised Version
Every good gift and every perfect boon is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom can be no variation, neither shadow that is cast by turning.

Webster's Bible Translation
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.

Weymouth New Testament
Every gift which is good, and every perfect boon, is from above, and comes down from the Father, who is the source of all Light. In Him there is no variation nor the slightest suggestion of change.

World English Bible
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom can be no variation, nor turning shadow.

Young's Literal Translation
every good giving, and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the lights, with whom is no variation, or shadow of turning;
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

1:12-18 It is not every man who suffers, that is blessed; but he who with patience and constancy goes through all difficulties in the way of duty. Afflictions cannot make us miserable, if it be not our own fault. The tried Christian shall be a crowned one. The crown of life is promised to all who have the love of God reigning in their hearts. Every soul that truly loves God, shall have its trials in this world fully recompensed in that world above, where love is made perfect. The commands of God, and the dealings of his providence, try men's hearts, and show the dispositions which prevail in them. But nothing sinful in the heart or conduct can be ascribed to God. He is not the author of the dross, though his fiery trial exposes it. Those who lay the blame of sin, either upon their constitution, or upon their condition in the world, or pretend they cannot keep from sinning, wrong God as if he were the author of sin. Afflictions, as sent by God, are designed to draw out our graces, but not our corruptions. The origin of evil and temptation is in our own hearts. Stop the beginnings of sin, or all the evils that follow must be wholly charged upon us. God has no pleasure in the death of men, as he has no hand in their sin; but both sin and misery are owing to themselves. As the sun is the same in nature and influences, though the earth and clouds, often coming between, make it seem to us to vary, so God is unchangeable, and our changes and shadows are not from any changes or alterations in him. What the sun is in nature, God is in grace, providence, and glory; and infinitely more. As every good gift is from God, so particularly our being born again, and all its holy, happy consequences come from him. A true Christian becomes as different a person from what he was before the renewing influences of Divine grace, as if he were formed over again. We should devote all our faculties to God's service, that we may be a kind of first-fruits of his creatures.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 17. - Every good gift, etc. The words form a hexameter verse, though this is probably accidental, and no sign that they are a quotation. Δόσις and δώρημα should be distinguished. "Every kind of gift that is good, and every one that is perfect in its kind" (Dean Scott). Δόσις and δῶρον occur together in the LXX. in Proverbs 21:14. They are expressly distinguished by Philo, who says that the latter involves the idea of magnitude and fullness, which is wanting to the former (see Lightfoot on 'Revision,' p. 77) "Every good gift and every perfect boon, R.V. The Father of lights (ἀπὸ τοῦ Πατρὸς τῶν φώτων). The word must refer to the heavenly bodies, of which God may be said to be the Father, in that he is their Creator (for "Father," in the sense of Creator, cf. Job 38:28). From him who "made the stars also" comes down every good and perfect gift, and with him "there can be no variation, neither shadow that is cast by turning." These last words appear to fix the meaning of φῶτα, as τροπή is used in the LXX. as in classical writers for the changes of the heavenly bodies (see Job 38:33; Deuteronomy 33:14; Wisd. 7:18). Οὐκ ἔνι, "there is no room for." It negatives, not only the fact, but the possibility also (cf. Galatians 3:28; Colossians 3:11).

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

Every good gift and every perfect gift,.... Whether of nature, providence, or grace, and especially the latter; spiritual gifts given along with Christ, or spiritual blessings in him; every such gift is; as the Vulgate Latin version reads, the "best" gift; better than those which only relate to the present life: and is "perfect" such as the gifts of righteousness, remission of sins, adoption, regeneration, and eternal life. The Jews say (k), that the good things of this world are not truly good, in comparison of the good things of the world to come, and are not , "a perfect good." And every such an one is from above; is not from a man's self, from the creature, or from below, but from heaven, and from God who dwells there:

and cometh down from the Father of lights; or author of lights; of all corporeal light; as the sun, moon, and stars; of all natural, rational, and moral light, in angels and men; of all spiritual light, or the light of grace in regenerate persons; and of eternal light, the light of glory in the spirits of just then made perfect:

with whom is no variableness, nor shadow of turning: as there is in that great luminary, the sun in the firmament, which has its parallaxes, eclipses, and turnings, and casts its shadow; it rises and sets, appears and disappears every day; and it comes out of one tropic, and enters into another at certain seasons of the year: but with God, who is light itself, and in him is no darkness at all, there is no change, nor anything like it; he is changeable in his nature, perfections, purposes, promises, and gifts; wherefore he being holy, cannot turn to that which is evil; nor can he, who is the fountain of light, be the cause of darkness, or admit of any in him; and since every good and perfect gift comes from him, evil cannot proceed from him, nor can he tempt any to it.

(k) Tzeror Hammor, fol. 23. 2, 3.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

17. gift … gift—not the same words in Greek: the first, the act of giving, or the gift in its initiatory stage; the second, the thing given, the boon, when perfected. As the "good gift" stands in contrast to "sin" in its initiatory stage (Jas 1:15), so the "perfect boon" is in contrast to "sin when it is finished," bringing forth death (2Pe 1:3).

from above—(Compare Jas 3:15).

Father of lights—Creator of the lights in heaven (compare Job 38:28 [Alford]; Ge 4:20, 21; Heb 12:9). This accords with the reference to the changes in the light of the heavenly bodies alluded to in the end of the verse. Also, Father of the spiritual lights in the kingdom of grace and glory [Bengel]. These were typified by the supernatural lights on the breastplate of the high priest, the Urim. As "God is light, and in Him is no darkness at all" (1Jo 1:5), He cannot in any way be the Author of sin (Jas 1:13), which is darkness (Joh 3:19).

no variableness … shadow of turning—(Mal 3:6). None of the alternations of light and shadow which the physical "lights" undergo, and which even the spiritual lights are liable to, as compared with God. "Shadow of turning," literally, the dark "shadow-mark" cast from one of the heavenly bodies, arising from its "turning" or revolution, for example, when the moon is eclipsed by the shadow of the earth, and the sun by the body of the moon. Bengel makes a climax, "no variation—not even the shadow of a turning"; the former denoting a change in the understanding; the latter, in the will.

James 1:17 Additional Commentaries
Context
Perseverance in Temptation
16Do not be deceived, my beloved brethren. 17Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow. 18In the exercise of His will He brought us forth by the word of truth, so that we would be a kind of first fruits among His creatures.
Cross References
Psalm 85:12
The LORD will indeed give what is good, and our land will yield its harvest.

Psalm 102:27
But you remain the same, and your years will never end.

Psalm 136:7
who made the great lights-- His love endures forever.

Daniel 2:22
He reveals deep and hidden things; he knows what lies in darkness, and light dwells with him.

Malachi 3:6
"I the LORD do not change. So you, the descendants of Jacob, are not destroyed.

Matthew 7:11
If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!

John 3:3
Jesus replied, "Very truly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born again."

John 3:27
To this John replied, "A person can receive only what is given them from heaven.

1 Timothy 6:16
who alone is immortal and who lives in unapproachable light, whom no one has seen or can see. To him be honor and might forever. Amen.

James 3:15
Such "wisdom" does not come down from heaven but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic.

James 3:17
But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere.

1 John 1:5
This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all.
Treasury of Scripture

Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom is no ficklenss, neither shadow of turning.

good. See on ver.

James 1:5 If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that gives to all …

James 3:15,17 This wisdom descends not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish…

Genesis 41:16,38,39 And Joseph answered Pharaoh, saying, It is not in me: God shall give …

Exodus 4:11,12 And the LORD said to him, Who has made man's mouth? or who makes …

Exodus 31:3-6 And I have filled him with the spirit of God, in wisdom, and in understanding, …

Exodus 36:1,2 Then worked Bezaleel and Aholiab, and every wise hearted man…

Numbers 11:17,25 And I will come down and talk with you there: and I will take of …

1 Chronicles 22:12 Only the LORD give you wisdom and understanding, and give you charge …

1 Chronicles 29:19 And give to Solomon my son a perfect heart, to keep your commandments, …

2 Chronicles 1:11,12 And God said to Solomon, Because this was in your heart, and you …

Proverbs 2:6 For the LORD gives wisdom: out of his mouth comes knowledge and understanding.

Isaiah 28:26 For his God does instruct him to discretion, and does teach him.

Daniel 2:21,22,27-30 And he changes the times and the seasons: he removes kings, and sets …

Matthew 7:11 If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children…

Matthew 11:25,26 At that time Jesus answered and said, I thank you, O Father, Lord …

Matthew 13:11,12 He answered and said to them, Because it is given to you to know …

Luke 11:13 If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children…

John 3:27 John answered and said, A man can receive nothing, except it be given …

Acts 5:31 Him has God exalted with his right hand to be a Prince and a Savior, …

Acts 11:18 When they heard these things, they held their peace, and glorified …

Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life …

Romans 11:30 For as you in times past have not believed God, yet have now obtained …

Romans 12:6-8 Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given …

1 Corinthians 4:7 For who makes you to differ from another? and what have you that …

1 Corinthians 12:4-12 Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit…

Ephesians 2:3-5,8 Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the …

Ephesians 4:8-11 Why he said, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, …

Philippians 1:29 For to you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe …

Titus 3:3-5 For we ourselves also were sometimes foolish, disobedient, deceived, …

1 John 4:10 Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and …

1 John 5:11,12 And this is the record, that God has given to us eternal life, and …

from the.

Genesis 1:2-5,14,15 And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was on the …

Deuteronomy 4:19 And lest you lift up your eyes to heaven, and when you see the sun, …

Psalm 19:1-8 The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament shows his handiwork…

Psalm 84:11 For the LORD God is a sun and shield: the LORD will give grace and …

Isaiah 45:7 I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: …

Isaiah 60:19 The sun shall be no more your light by day; neither for brightness …

John 1:9 That was the true Light, which lights every man that comes into the world.

John 8:12 Then spoke Jesus again to them, saying, I am the light of the world: …

2 Corinthians 4:6 For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, has shined …

Ephesians 1:18 The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that you may know …

1 John 1:5 This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare …

Revelation 21:23 And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine …

Revelation 22:5 And there shall be no night there; and they need no candle, neither …

no variableness.

Numbers 23:19 God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that …

1 Samuel 15:29 And also the Strength of Israel will not lie nor repent: for he is …

Psalm 122:6 Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: they shall prosper that love you.

Isaiah 46:10 Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the …

Malachi 3:6 For I am the LORD, I change not; therefore you sons of Jacob are not consumed.

Romans 11:29 For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance.

Hebrews 1:11,12 They shall perish; but you remain; and they all shall wax old as …

Hebrews 13:8 Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.

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