James 1:18
Parallel Verses
New American Standard Bible
In 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.

King James Bible
Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.

Darby Bible Translation
According to his own will begat he us by the word of truth, that we should be a certain first-fruits of his creatures.

World English Bible
Of his own will he brought us forth by the word of truth, that we should be a kind of first fruits of his creatures.

Young's Literal Translation
having counselled, He did beget us with a word of truth, for our being a certain first-fruit of His creatures.

James 1:18 Parallel
Commentary
Barnes' Notes on the Bible

Of his own will - Greek "willing." βουληθεὶς boulētheis. The idea is, that the fact that we are "begotten" to be his children is to be traced solely to his will. He purposed it, and it was done. The antecedent in the case on which all depended was the sovereign will of God. See this sentiment explained in the notes at John 1:13. Compare the notes at Ephesians 1:5. When it is said, however, that he has done this by his mere will, it is not to be inferred that there was no reason why it should be done, or that the exercise of his will was arbitrary, but only that his will determined the matter, and that is the cause of our conversion. It is not to be inferred that there are not in all cases good reasons why God wills as he does, though those reasons are not often stated to us, and perhaps we could not comprehend them if they were. The object of the statement here seems to be to direct the mind up to God as the source of good and not evil; and among the most eminent illustrations of his goodness is this, that by his mere will, without any external power to control him, and where there could be nothing but benevolence, he has adopted us into his family, and given us a most exalted condition, as renovated beings, among his creatures.

Begat he us - The Greek word here is the same which in James 1:15 is rendered "bringeth forth," - "sin bringeth forth death." The word is perhaps designedly used here in contrast with that, and the object is to refer to a different kind of production, or bringing forth, under the agency of sin, and the agency of God. The meaning here is, that we owe the beginning of our spiritual life to God.

With the word of truth - By the instrumentality of truth. It was not a mere creative act, but it was by truth as the seed or germ. There is no effect produced in our minds in regeneration which the truth is not fitted to produce, and the agency of God in the case is to secure its fair and full influence on the soul.

That we should be a kind of first-fruits of his creatures - Compare Ephesians 1:12. For the meaning of the word rendered "first-fruits," see the note at Romans 8:23. Compare Romans 11:6; Romans 16:5; 1 Corinthians 15:20, 1 Corinthians 15:23; 1 Corinthians 16:15; Revelation 14:4. It does not elsewhere occur in the New Testament It denotes, properly, that which is first taken from anything; the portion which was usually offered to God. The phrase here does not primarily denote eminence in honor or degree, but refers rather to time - the first in time; and in a secondary sense it is then used to denote the honor attached to that circumstance. The meaning here is, either.

(1) that, under the gospel, those who were addressed by the apostles had the honor of being first called into his kingdom as a part of that glorious harvest which it was designed to gather in this world, and that the goodness of God was manifested in thus furnishing the first-fruits of a most glorious harvest; or,

(2) the reference may be to the rank and dignity which all who are born again would have among the creatures of God in virtue of the new birth.

James 1:18 Parallel Commentaries

Library
George Buchanan, Scholar
The scholar, in the sixteenth century, was a far more important personage than now. The supply of learned men was very small, the demand for them very great. During the whole of the fifteenth, and a great part of the sixteenth century, the human mind turned more and more from the scholastic philosophy of the Middle Ages to that of the Romans and the Greeks; and found more and more in old Pagan Art an element which Monastic Art had not, and which was yet necessary for the full satisfaction of their
Charles Kingsley—Historical Lectures and Essays

An Address to the Regenerate, Founded on the Preceding Discourses.
James I. 18. James I. 18. Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of first fruits of his creatures. I INTEND the words which I have now been reading, only as an introduction to that address to the sons and daughters of the Lord Almighty, with which I am now to conclude these lectures; and therefore shall not enter into any critical discussion, either of them, or of the context. I hope God has made the series of these discourses, in some measure, useful to those
Philip Doddridge—Practical Discourses on Regeneration

Antecedents of Permanent Christian Colonization --The Disintegration of Christendom --Controversies --Persecutions.
WE have briefly reviewed the history of two magnificent schemes of secular and spiritual empire, which, conceived in the minds of great statesmen and churchmen, sustained by the resources of the mightiest kingdoms of that age, inaugurated by soldiers of admirable prowess, explorers of unsurpassed boldness and persistence, and missionaries whose heroic faith has canonized them in the veneration of Christendom, have nevertheless come to naught. We turn now to observe the beginnings, coinciding in time
Leonard Woolsey Bacon—A History of American Christianity

The Puritan Beginnings of the Church in virginia ---Its Decline Almost to Extinction.
THERE is sufficient evidence that the three little vessels which on the 13th of May, 1607, were moored to the trees on the bank of the James River brought to the soil of America the germ of a Christian church. We may feel constrained to accept only at a large discount the pious official professions of King James I., and critically to scrutinize many of the statements of that brilliant and fascinating adventurer, Captain John Smith, whether concerning his friends or concerning his enemies or concerning
Leonard Woolsey Bacon—A History of American Christianity

Cross References
Jeremiah 2:3
"Israel was holy to the LORD, The first of His harvest. All who ate of it became guilty; Evil came upon them," declares the LORD.'"

John 1:13
who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.

2 Corinthians 6:7
in the word of truth, in the power of God; by the weapons of righteousness for the right hand and the left,

Ephesians 1:13
In Him, you also, after listening to the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation-- having also believed, you were sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit of promise,

2 Timothy 2:15
Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth.

James 1:15
Then when lust has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and when sin is accomplished, it brings forth death.

James 3:14
But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your heart, do not be arrogant and so lie against the truth.

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