Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

James 4:13

Come now, you who say, "Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, and spend a year there and engage in business and make a profit."
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Commandments;   Confidence;   Covetousness;   Presumption;   Self-Delusion;   Thompson Chain Reference - Common Delusions;   Men's Plans;   Plans and Devices of Men;   Plans of Men;   Presuming upon Time;   Presumption;   Presumptuous Plans;   Prudence-Rashness;   Time;   The Topic Concordance - Boasting;   Evil;   Knowledge;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Commerce;   Happiness of the Wicked, the;   Life, Natural;   Presumption;   Self-Delusion;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Merchant;   Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Anxiety;   Boasting;   Lending;   Time;   Work;   World;   Baker Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Providence of God;   Charles Buck Theological Dictionary - Ordinances of the Gospel;   Easton Bible Dictionary - Providence;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - Proverbs, the Book of;   Scribes;   Holman Bible Dictionary - James, the Letter;   Merchant;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - James, Epistle of;   Judas;   Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament - Almsgiving ;   Arts;   Debt, Debtor;   James Epistle of;   Trade and Commerce;   Worldliness;  
Encyclopedias:
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Buying;   Commerce;   Gain;   Geber;   Go;   James, Epistle of;   Trade;   Wisdom;  
Devotionals:
Chip Shots from the Ruff of Life - Devotion for December 6;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

Go to now - Αγε νυν· Come now, the same in meaning as the Hebrew הבה habah, come, Genesis 11:3, Genesis 11:4, Genesis 11:7. Come, and hear what I have to say, ye that say, etc.

To-day, or to-morrow, we will go - This presumption on a precarious life is here well reproved; and the ancient Jewish rabbins have some things on the subject which probably St. James had in view. In Debarim Rabba, sec. 9, fol. 261, 1, we have the following little story; "Our rabbins tell us a story which happened in the days of Rabbi Simeon, the son of Chelpatha. He was present at the circumcision of a child, and stayed with its father to the entertainment. The father brought out wine for his guests that was seven years old, saying, With this wine will I continue for a long time to celebrate the birth of my new-born son. They continued supper till midnight. At that time Rabbi Simeon arose and went out, that he might return to the city in which he dwelt. On the way he saw the angel of death walking up and down. He said to him, Who art thou? He answered, I am the messenger of God. The rabbin said, Why wanderest thou about thus? He answered, I slay those persons who say, We will do this, or that, and think not how soon death may overpower them: that man with whom thou hast supped, and who said to his guests, With this wine will I continue for a long time to celebrate the birth of my new-born son, behold the end of his life is at hand, for he shall die within thirty days." By this parable they teach the necessity of considering the shortness and uncertainty of human life; and that God is particularly displeased with those ...

"Who, counting on long years of pleasure here,

Are quite unfurnished for a world to come."

And continue there a year, and buy and sell - This was the custom of those ancient times; they traded from city to city, carrying their goods on the backs of camels. The Jews traded thus to Tyre, Sidon, Caesarea, Crete, Ephesus, Philippi, Thessalonica, Corinth, Rome, etc. And it is to this kind of itinerant mercantile life that St. James alludes. See at the end of this chapter, ( James 4:17; (note)).

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Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on James 4:13". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/james-4.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

Go to now - The apostle here introduces a new subject, and refers to another fault which was doubtless prevalent among them, as it is everywhere, that of a presumptuous confidence respecting the future, or of forming plans stretching into the future, without any proper sense of the uncertainty of life, and of our absolute dependence on God. The phrase “go to now,” ( ἄγε νῦν age nunis a phrase designed to arrest attention, as if there were something that demanded their notice, and especially, as in this case, with the implied thought that that to which the attention is called is wrong. See James 5:1. Compare Genesis 11:7; Isaiah 1:18.

Ye that say - You that form your plans in this manner or that speak thus confidently of what you will do in the future. The word say here probably refers to what was in their thoughts, rather than to what was openly expressed.

Today or tomorrow we will go into such a city - That is, they say this without any proper sense of the uncertainty of life, and of their absolute dependence on God.

And continue there a year - Fixing a definite time; designating the exact period during which they would remain, and when they would leave, without any reference to the will of God. The apostle undoubtedly means to refer here to this as a mere specimen of what he would reprove. It cannot be supposed that he refers to this single case alone as wrong. All plans are wrong that are formed in the same spirit. “The practice to which the apostle here alludes,” says the editor of the Pictorial Bible, “is very common in the East to this day, among a very respectable and intelligent class of merchants. They convey the products of one place to some distant city, where they remain until they have disposed of their own goods and have purchased others suitable for another distant market; and thus the operation is repeated, until, after a number of years, the trader is enabled to return prosperously to his home. Or again, a shopkeeper or a merchant takes only the first step in this process - conveying to a distant town, where the best purchases of his own line are to be made, such goods as are likely to realise a profit, and returning, without any farther stop, with a stock for his own concern. These operations are seldom very rapid, as the adventurer likes to wait opportunities for making advantageous bargains; and sometimes opens a shop in the place to which he comes, to sell by retail the goods which he has bought.” The practice is common in India. See Roberts” Oriental Illustrations.

And buy and sell, and get gain - It is not improbable that there is an allusion here to the commercial habits of the Jews at the time when the apostle wrote. Many of them were engaged in foreign traffic, and for this purpose made long journeys to distant trading cities, as Alexandria, Antioch, Ephesus, Corinth, etc. - Bloomfield.

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Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on James 4:13". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/james-4.html. 1870.

Coffman Commentaries on the Bible

Come now, ye that say, Today or tomorrow, we will go into this city, and spend a year there, and trade, and get gain:

The presumption of men is a dreadful and arrogant conceit:

Tomorrow ... Of course, we shall be alive and in health tomorrow. No emergency will arise, no sickness lay us low, no sudden death overtake us. Tomorrow is our apple, and we'll cut it up like we please.

We will go into the city ... The weather will be good; transportation will be available; we shall meet with no accident; no car will be wrecked, airplane fall, or train derail; we shall arrive exactly as planned.

And spend a year there ... Lodging will be available to us, and at a price we can afford; no problems! No rioting shall break out; no epidemic shall occur; no war will break out; no disastrous fire will hinder; no earthquake will level the city; no flood will sweep it away. No thieves or robbers shall injure us!

And trade ... Ah yes! Goods will be available, and of the kind, quality and price we want; financing the operation will be no impediment; there will be no shortages, no damaged freight, no ruined merchandise, no change in style or taste that would hinder trade; no city regulation, no competition, no shortage of labor - nothing will get in the way!

And get gain ... Of course, buyers for our products will be plentiful; they will have the money; they will wish to purchase our goods, at a prince substantially higher than we paid; the profits will roll in!

What should be thought of such godless planning? As Harper said, "The sin of these men was not in planning for the future, but in failing to consider God in their plans."[27]

It is not necessary to apply these verses (through James 4:17) to the rich only. All people, regardless of wealth, social standing or any other condition, who make their life plans without respect to the will of God are the ones remonstrated. James will treat the problem of riches in the next chapter.

ENDNOTE:

[27] A. F. Harper, op. cit., p. 236.

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Coffman Commentaries reproduced by permission of Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. All other rights reserved.
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Coffman, James Burton. "Commentary on James 4:13". "Coffman Commentaries on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bcc/james-4.html. Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. 1983-1999.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

Go to now, ye that say,.... The apostle passes from exposing the sin of detraction, and rash judgment, to inveigh against those of presumption and self-confidence; and the phrase, "go to now", is a note of transition, as well as of attention, and contains the form of a solemn and grave address to persons, who either think within themselves, or vocally express, the following words, or the like unto them:

today, or tomorrow, we will go into such a city; in such a country, a place of great trade and merchandise; as Tyre then was in Phoenicia, Thessalonica in Macedonia, Ephesus in Asia, and others: some render this as an imperative, or as an exhortation, "let us go", which does not alter the sense.

And continue there a year, and buy and sell, and get gain; as is customary for merchants to do; nor does the apostle design by this to condemn merchandise, and the lawful practice of buying and selling, and getting gain; but that men should not resolve upon those things without consulting God, and attending to his will, and subjecting themselves to it; and without considering the uncertainty and frailty of human life; as well as should not promise and assure themselves of success, of getting gain and riches, as if those things were in their own power, and had no dependence upon the providence and blessing of God.

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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rights Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
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Gill, John. "Commentary on James 4:13". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/james-4.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

8 Go to now, ye that say, To day or to morrow we will go into such a city, and continue there a year, and buy and sell, and get gain:

(8) The other fault is this: That men do so confidently determine on these and those matters and businesses, as though every moment of their life did not depend on God.
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Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on James 4:13". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/james-4.html. 1599-1645.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

Go to now — “Come now”; said to excite attention.

ye that sayboasting of the morrow.

To-day or to-morrow — as if ye had the free choice of either day as a certainty. Others read, “To-day and to-morrow.”

such a city — literally, “this the city” (namely, the one present to the mind of the speaker). This city here.

continue … a year — rather, “spend one year.” Their language implies that when this one year is out, they purpose similarly settling plans for to come [Bengel].

buy and sell — Their plans for the future are all worldly.

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These files are a derivative of an electronic edition prepared from text scanned by Woodside Bible Fellowship.
This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.
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Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on James 4:13". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/james-4.html. 1871-8.

Robertson's Word Pictures in the New Testament

Go to now (αγε νυνage nun). Interjectional use of αγεage (from αγωagō) as in James 5:1 (only N.T. instances) with a plural verb (οι λεγοντεςhoi legontes present active articular participle, ye that say) as is common in ancient Greek like ιδε νυν ηκουσατεide nun ēkousate (Matthew 26:65).

Today or tomorrow (σημερον η αυριονsēmeron ē aurion). Correct text (Aleph B), not καιkai (and).

Into this city (εις τηνδε την πολινeis tēnde tēn polin). Old demonstrative οδεhode rare in N.T. (Luke 10:39) save in neuter plural ταδεtade (these things Acts 21:11). One would point out the city on the map (Mayor) as he made the proposal (we will go, πορευσομεταporeusometha).

And spend a year there (και ποιησομεν εκει ενιαυτονkai poiēsomen ekei eniauton). Another future (active of ποιεωpoieō). “We will do a year there.”

And trade (και εμπορευσομεταkai emporeusometha). Future middle of εμπορευομαιemporeuomai (εν πορευομαιenεμποροςporeuomai to go in), old verb from και κερδησομενemporos (a merchant or trader, a drummer, one going in and getting the trade, Matthew 13:45), a vivid picture of the Jewish merchants of the time.

And get gain (κερδαινωkai kerdēsomen). Future (Ionic form) active of κερδοςkerdainō old verb from kerdos (gain, Philemon 1:21), as in Matthew 16:26.

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The Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament. Copyright Broadman Press 1932,33, Renewal 1960. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman Press (Southern Baptist Sunday School Board)
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Robertson, A.T. "Commentary on James 4:13". "Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rwp/james-4.html. Broadman Press 1932,33. Renewal 1960.

Vincent's Word Studies

Go to now ( ἄγε νῦν )

Go to is an obsolete phrase, though retained in Rev. It is a formula for calling attention: come now.

Such a city ( τήνδε τὴν πόλιν )

More accurately, as Rev.,this city.

Continue there a year ( ποιήσομεν ἐκεῖ ἐνιαυτὸν )

Lit., we will make a year. See, for the same form of expression, Acts 15:33; Acts 18:23; 2 Corinthians 11:25. Better, as Rev., spend a year there. (Compare the A. V., Acts 18:23, rightly retained by Rev.) The word ποιήσομεν implies more than mere continuance; rather, a doing something with the year.

And

The frequent use of the copulative gives a lively tone to the passage, expressive of the lightness and thoughtlessness of a careless spirit.

Buy and sell ( ἐμπορευσόμεθα )

Rev., more concisely, trade. Only here and 2 Peter 2:3.

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Vincent, Marvin R. DD. "Commentary on James 4:13". "Vincent's Word Studies in the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/vnt/james-4.html. Charles Schribner's Sons. New York, USA. 1887.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Go to now, ye that say, To day or to morrow we will go into such a city, and continue there a year, and buy and sell, and get gain:

Come now, ye that say — As peremptorily as if your life were in your own hands.

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Wesley, John. "Commentary on James 4:13". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/james-4.html. 1765.

Greek Testament Critical Exegetical Commentary

13.] Go to now (“interjectio ad excitandam attentionem,” Beng. This seems to be the true view of it: ‘come on,’ q. d. let us reason together: cf. δεῦτε, διελεγχθῶμεν, Isaiah 1:18. The νῦν serves to mark the time, as noted by the point to which the argument of the Epistle has arrived. It is hardly purely temporal, but as so often, slightly ratiocinative, = ‘rebus sic stantibus,’ ‘quæ cum ita sint:’ see on 1 Corinthians 13:13), ye that say (no stress on λέγοντες: not as Theile, “qui non solum cogitare soletis, sed etiam dicere audetis.” The fault is even oftener perhaps committed in word than in thought. We speak more presumptuously before men than we think in our own hearts; though there also we are too liable to forget God), To-day and to-morrow (the of the rec. would suppose an alternative, “to-day, it may be, or to-morrow:” with καί, the two days are assigned for the journey, without any alternative. Bengel and Wiesinger take καί, as in δύο μαρτύρων καὶ τριῶν, 2 Corinthians 13:1, as combining two possible cases: “Nunc dicit hodie, idem aliusve cras, ut commodum est,” Beng. This is possible: but I prefer the other) we will go (the indic, fut. (see var. readd.) gives the fixed certainty of the assumption) into this (most Commentators render, “this or that,” = “such a,” as E. V.: and Winer, Gramm. § 23. 5, refers to Plutarch, Sympos. i. 6. 1, for this usage of ὅδε. But his reference does not quite bear him out. Plutarch is proving the vinosity of Alexander from the βασιλικαὶ ἐφημερίδες, in which is found very often written ὅτι τήνδε τὴν ἡμέραν ἐκ τοῦ πότου ἐκάθευδεν, ἔστι δʼ ὅτε καὶ τὴν ἐφεξῆς: where τήνδε τὴν ἡμέραν is clearly a quotation from the diary, not ‘this or that day,’ but “this day:” and then τὴν ἐφεξῆς is an improper elliptical way of recording, that against the next day a similar entry was made. So that I should much doubt this usage of ὅδε, there being no mention of it in the best Lexx., and apparently no other example: and should consider τήνδε τὴν πόλιν as a sort of ‘oratio mixta,’ to express in general terms the city then present to the mind of the speaker) city, and will spend (reff. for this temporal sense of ποιέω) there one year ( ἐνιαυτὸν ἕνα is the accus. not of duration, but of the object, after ποιήσομεν. So that the E. V. “continue there a year,” is not accurate. It should have been ‘spend a year there,’ which savours of presumption much more strongly and vividly. ἐνιαυτ. ἕνα: “Sic loquuntur, quasi mox etiam de insequentibus annis deliberaturi.” Beng.), and (Bengel remarks well: “ καί frequens: polysyndeton exprimit libidinem animi securi”) will traffic (this word brings up the worldly nature of the plan) and get gain:

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Alford, Henry. "Commentary on James 4:13". Greek Testament Critical Exegetical Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hac/james-4.html. 1863-1878.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

Теперь послушайте. Здесь апостол осуждает еще один вид гордыни: многие, хотя и полностью зависят от провидения Божия, тем не менее, самоуверенно решают, что именно сделают в будущем. Они строят столь долговременные планы, словно могут расписать жизнь на годы вперед. И в то же время не управляют даже текущим мигом своей жизни. Соломон искусно высмеивает это глупое притязание (Прит.16:1), говоря, что люди замышляют свои пути, а языком их управляет Господь. Ибо глупо приписывать себе способность исполнить дело, между тем, как ты не в состоянии даже управлять своим языком. Апостол обрушивается не столько на сами слова, сколько на глупость тех, кто, забыв о собственной немощи, мнит себя полновластным хозяином жизни. Ведь и благочестивые, думающие о себе скромно и признающие, что стопы их направляются волею Божией, говорят, порою, без оговорок, что сделают то или это. Да, полезно и правильно, обещая что-либо сделать в будущем, привыкнуть к оборотам: если Господь усмотрит, или, если Господь позволит. Однако не стоит устанавливать жесткое не подлежащее нарушению правило. Ведь в Писании мы повсеместно читаем, как святые Божии без каких-либо оговорок говорят о будущих делах, одновременно твердо помня о том, что ничего не могут без дозволения Божия. Несомненно, все благочестивые должны использовать фразу: если Господь захочет. Но Иаков имеет в виду не это. Он пробуждает ото сна тех, кто, забыв о провидении Божием и подчиняя себе все будущие времена, не имеет при этом власти даже над одним мигом. Эти люди обещают себе будущий прибыток, хотя не в силах управлять и тем, что находится в их руках.

 

 

 

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Calvin, John. "Commentary on James 4:13". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/james-4.html. 1840-57.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

13 Go to now, ye that say, To day or to morrow we will go into such a city, and continue there a year, and buy and sell, and get gain:

Ver. 13. We will go into such, &c.] As if they were petty gods within themselves, and needed not to call God into counsel, or to take his leave along with them. But such confident exchange language became not the mouths of scattered exiles. And yet it is the common sin of dispersed Jews in all places to this day. And I would it were their sin only; and that this rude and rash peremptoriness were not in use among us also.

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Trapp, John. "Commentary on James 4:13". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/james-4.html. 1865-1868.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

James 4:13. We will go into such a city, That is, to Rome or Alexandria, Tyre or Sidon, Corinth or Ephesus; according to the countries into which the Jewish Christians were dispersed, or the trades they carried on. The next verse ought to be read in a parenthesis, as an important piece of advice which might be obviously inferred, when he was reproving them for building too much upon this precarious life. Without the parenthesis, the 13th and 15th verses join very well: "You say so and so;—Instead of which you ought to say, &c."

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Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on James 4:13". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/james-4.html. 1801-1803.

Expository Notes with Practical Observations on the New Testament

For the clear understanding of these words,

consider, 1. What is not here forbidden or condemned by our apostle; namely, prudential resolutions for a right management of human affairs: It is lawful for men to take up a purpose to go to such a place, and follow their trade there, to buy, and sell, and get gain in an honest way; but no man must be peremptory in this, because we know not what shall be on the morrow, such determinations must be made with submission to divine providence: If the Lord will, we shall do this or that, referring all to his pleasure, who alone doth whatsoever pleaseth him.

Consider, 2. What is hereby intimated to us, and what is the duty incumbent upon us, namely,

1. That we have no assurance of our lives, nor any of the comforts of our lives, for one day, and therefore ought to refer all our actions, our enterprises, and undertakings to the will of God. What is your life? It is but a vapour; therefore ye ought to say, If the Lord will we shall do this or that.

2. That in regard of the great frailty of our lives, and the great uncertainty of issues and events, it is the height of presumption to promise ourselves great things, without the leave of God's providence; as our times are in God's hand, so are our actions also in God's power, both as to the performance of them, and as to the success of them: Say not then, today, or tomorrow, we will go into such a city; for that ye ought to say, If the Lord will, we shall do this, or that.

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Burkitt, William. "Commentary on James 4:13". Expository Notes with Practical Observations on the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wbc/james-4.html. 1700-1703.

Heinrich Meyer's Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament

James 4:13. The apostrophe commencing with this verse, and continued until chap. James 5:6, has a character plainly distinguished from other portions of the Epistle—(1) by ἄγε νῦν repeated; (2) those addressed are neither directly designated as ἀδελφοί, as is elsewhere the case with James (with the single exception of chap. James 4:1 ff.), nor are yet characterized as members of the Christian church; (3) only their forgetfulness of God is described, and their judgment is announced without any call being added to desist from their practice and be converted; so that this apostrophe contains not the slightest exhortation to repentance, as is the case with those addressed in James 4:8 as ἁμαρτωλοί and δίψυχοι. All this is a sufficient proof that James has in view, as Oecumenius, Bede, Semler, Pott, Hottinger, and others have correctly remarked (differently Gebser, Schneckenburger, de Wette, Wiesinger; Theile considers that Jewish Christians and Jews are here addressed), not so much the members of the church, as rather the rich ( οἱ πλούσιοι, James 5:1), of whom it is already said in chap. James 2:6-7, that they oppress the Christians and blaspheme the name of Christ, and who are already, in chap. James 1:10, opposed to “the brother of low degree.” The severe language against them in an Epistle directed to Christians is sufficiently explained from the fact that, with many among them, as follows from James 4:1 ff., the same forgetfulness of God had gained ground. Also the first section (James 4:13-17) is of such a nature that the fault therein expressed affected many of the readers not less than the arrogant Jews.(207) In this section, those addressed are at first characterized only according to their presumptuous security in their striving after earthly gain.

ἄγε νῦν] ἄγε, occurring in the N. T. only here and in chap. James 5:1, is a summons, which also, with classical writers, is joined with the plural (Winer, p. 458 [E. T. 649]).

νῦν] serves not only for strengthening (de Wette, Wiesinger), but likewise for connection with what goes before. As in what follows there is no summons to do anything, some expositors suppose that ἄγε νῦν is designed only to excite attention; Grotius: jam ego ad vos; so also Pott, Theile: age, audite vos. Others supply a thought; thus Schulthess: πῶς ποιεῖτε, or ΄ὴ καλῶς ποιεῖτε, and the like. De Wette thinks that the summons to lay aside the fault is indirectly contained in the reproof. Wiesinger suggests James 4:16 as the material for the designed imperative clause. It is more correct to assume that James has already here in view the imperative clause in chap. James 5:1,

κλαύσατε ἐπὶ ταῖς ταλαιπωρίαις ὑ΄ῶν κ. τ. λ.,—placed after ἄγε νῦν again resumed; thus Gebser, Hottinger, Schneckenburger; similarly Lange, according to whom ἄγε νῦν “refers to the announcement of the judgment, which comes out quite clear in chap. James 5:1, but is here darkly and menacingly alluded to.”

οἱ λέγοντες] ye who say. λέγειν is to be retained in its usual signification; comp. chap. James 2:14. Theile, without reason, explains it: qui non solum cogitare soletis sed etiam dicere audetis.

σή΄ερον καὶ αὔριον] announces the precise duration of the intended journey—not when it should commence, but how long it should endure. With this explanation there is no difficulty in καί; otherwise (as the Rec. reads) must stand. In καί there lies a greater confidence (Theile), as according to it a definite plan is fixed upon also for the morrow. According to Wiesinger, different instances are here taken together, as in 2 Corinthians 13:1 (so already Bengel: unus dicit hodie, idem aliusve eras, ut commodum est); according to this, καί would have to be explained: “and relatively” (sec Meyer on that passage); but the indefiniteness contained therein does not suit the certainty with which these people speak. Lange’s meaning is unjustified: “that αὔριον is used for the undefined future subsequent to to-day.”

πορευσό΄εθα] The indicative we shall journey expresses the certain confidence more strongly than the conjunctive let us journey; see critical remarks.

εἰς τήνδε τὴν πόλιν] Luther: into this and that city. This explanation is also in Winer, p. 146 [E. T. 201], who adduces for it τήνδε τὴν ἡμέραν in Plutarch, Symp. i. 6. 1; but Al. Buttmann (p. 90 [E. T. 103]), on the other hand, correctly asserts that the pronoun in that passage, as everywhere among Greek authors, has its full demonstrative meaning, and that therefore it must be understood in James in the same sense; thus Schirlitz (p. 222) observes that the pronoun is here used δεικτικῶς; see also Lünemann’s remark in Winer, ed. 7, p. 153; still it is not to be explained, with Schneckenburger: in hanc urbem, quae in conspectu quasi sita est; but, with Theile: certa fingitur, quae vero verie eligi potest. Those introduced as speaking mean each time a definite city; but as this differs with different persons, James could only indicate it in an indefinite manner, and he does so by the pronoun by which each time a definite city is pointed to; thus into the city which the traveller had chosen as his aim. By πορεύεσθαι εἰς τ. πολ. is indicated not merely the going into the city, but also the journey to the city in which they would remain.

καὶ ποιήσο΄εν κ. τ. λ.] we will spend there a year; ποιεῖν with a designation of time, as in Acts 15:33; Acts 20:3, and other places; in the O. T. Proverbs 13:23; see also Nicarch. epigr. 35 (Jacobs’ ed.): ἐν ταύτῃ πεποίηκα πολὺν χρόνον. Luther incorrectly translates it: “and will continue there a year;”(208) for ἐνιαυτὸν ἕνα is not the accusative of duration, but the proper objective accusative. The reading ἕνα fittingly expresses the confidence with which those introduced as speaking measure out their time beforehand, but not “their restless and unsteady conduct” (Lange).

καὶ ἐμπορευσόμεθα καὶ κερδήσομεν] Bengel: καί frequens; polysyndeton exprimit libidinem animi securi.

ἐμπορεύεσθαι] = to traffic; the final aim is designated by κερδήσομεν. That aim is worldly gain, which, in carnal security, is recognised as certain to be realized, so that it cannot fail. Kern correctly remarks: “Traffic is introduced only by way of example, as characterizing man’s doings with reference to the earthly life as contrasted with the life in God.”(209)

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Meyer, Heinrich. "Commentary on James 4:13". Heinrich Meyer's Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hmc/james-4.html. 1832.

Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament

James 4:13. ἄγε νῦν, come now) The interjection used to excite attention, ch. James 5:1.— λέγοντες, ye who say) In plain terms, ye who boast: James 4:16.— σήμερον αὔριον, to-day or to-morrow) One says, to-day; the same, or some other person, says, to-morrow, as it suits his convenience; as though he had a free choice. αὔριον, Beza; and my note in the Gnomon was formerly in accordance with this reading; afterwards, in the course of inquiry, I preferred καὶ αὔριον.(57) See App. Crit. Ed. ii.— πορευσώμεθα, κ. τ. λ., we will go, etc.) The Subjunctive [let us go] makes the language modal,(58) and suggests urgent reasons for actions.— τήνδε) This is put instead of a proper name, as δεῖνα.— καὶ, and) The repetition of the conjunction, and, expresses the will of a mind at ease.— ἐνιαυτὸν ἕνα, one year) They thus speak, as though presently after about to deliberate also respecting years to come.

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Bengel, Johann Albrecht. "Commentary on James 4:13". Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jab/james-4.html. 1897.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Go to now; either this is a note of transition, or of command to inferiors, or rather of admonition to such as are stupid or rash, and tends to the awakening their attention, and stirring them up to the consideration of their duty, danger, &c.

Ye that say; either with your mouths, or in your hearts.

To-day or to-morrow we will go into such a city; not, let us go, but, we will go, in the indicative mood; noting the peremptoriness of their purposes, and their presuming upon future times and things, which were not in their power.

And continue there a year, and buy and sell, and get gain: he doth not condemn merchants travelling into other countries, nor trading there, nor designing gain by their trade, nor forecasting their business; but their promising themselves the continuance of their life, the accomplishing their designs, and the success of their labours, without respect to God’s providence and direction, as if their times and their works were in their own hands, not in his.

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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on James 4:13". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/james-4.html. 1685.

Alexander MacLaren's Expositions of Holy Scripture

Иаков не осуждает мудрое деловое планирование, но осуждает планирование без Бога. Изображенные в этом стихе люди на самом деле являются атеистами, живущими своей жизнью и составляющими планы, как будто Бог не существует. Подобное поведение несовместимо с подлинной спасающей верой, которая подчиняет людей Богу (см. пояснение к ст. 7).

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MacLaren, Alexander. "Commentary on James 4:13". Alexander MacLaren's Expositions of Holy Scripture. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mac/james-4.html.

Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable

James confronted his audience as the Old Testament prophets did. He began, "Come now" (cf. Isaiah 1:18; et al.). The person in James" illustration was probably a travelling Jewish merchant, "... the materialist core of the contemporary bourgeois prosperity." [Note: Adamson, p178.] Jewish merchants were common in the culture of James" day, and undoubtedly some of them were Christian Jews. The man"s plans were not wrong in themselves.

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Constable, Thomas. DD. "Commentary on James 4:13". "Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/dcc/james-4.html. 2012.

Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament

James 4:13. It is a matter of dispute and considerable difficulty to whom this passage is addressed; whether James is here addressing unworthy members of the Christian Church, who had not yet laid aside the Jewish vices of their unconverted state; or whether he admonishes the oppressors of the Jewish Christians, the unbelieving Jews, the ungodly and rich in this world. Three reasons have been assigned in support of the opinion that unbelievers are here addressed. 1. The address ‘Go to,’ again repeated (chap. James 5:1), seems to indicate that the words in the two apostrophes are addressed to those without the Church. 2. Those addressed are not designated as ‘brethren,’ as is the usual custom of St. James, nor are any marks given to indicate that they are Christians. 3. Their ungodly conduct is so described that it can only be applicable to those without the church, and their doom is pronounced without any call to repentance. Others affirm that we are ignorant of the extent of moral corruption in the early Church, and that it was not the practice of the sacred writers to address those who were outside of the Christian community. Perhaps the most correct opinion is to assume that the first part of the passage, to the end of the fourth chapter, is an admonition to the worldly members of the Church; and that the second part, commencing at the beginning of the fifth chapter, is an apostrophe to the rich and the ungodly in the world. The passage is divided into two distinct portions, each beginning with the address ‘Go to;’ and there is no reason to conclude that the persons thus similarly addressed in both paragraphs were the same. We consider, then, that those here addressed in the first paragraph were members of the Christian Church.

Go to, a call to attention, found only here and in the beginning of the next chapter.

now: this being the case; an inference from the preceding warning against worldliness and presumptuous confidence.

ye that say, Today or tomorrow; other manuscripts read ‘today and tomorrow;’ but the difference in meaning is slight.

we will go into such a city: literally, into this city or the city in the intention of the speaker.

and continue there a year: literally, ‘spend a year.’ Other manuscripts read, ‘Let us go into such a city, and let us spend there a year.’

and buy and sell: literally, ‘traffic.’

and get gain. There could be nothing wrong in the mere merchandise; the sin consisted in a presumptuous confidence in themselves, and in a want of realization of their dependence on God. The practice referred to is still very common in the East. Merchants journey to some distant city with their stock of goods, and continue there until the whole is disposed of.

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Schaff, Philip. "Commentary on James 4:13". "Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/scn/james-4.html. 1879-90.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

To-day or to-morrow, &c. An admonition against that presumption, when persons forget the uncertainty of life, and the vanity of all things in this world, which vanish like a vapour, and can never be relied upon, so as to count upon years and the time to come. All things here appear and disappear in a moment. Take heed, therefore, not to glory or boast in your arrogancies; (ver. 16.) literally, pride; like the rich man, (Luke x.) who thought of nothing but a long and merry life, and was cut off that very night. And being now admonished, reflect that it is sinful to know what is good, what is your duty, and not to comply with it. (Witham)

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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on James 4:13". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/james-4.html. 1859.

Mark Dunagan Commentary on the Bible

The Presumptuous Use Of Time

When we think of what some have called the sin of worldliness, we often think in terms of immodest apparel, filthy language, watching the wrong kind of television programs, movies and so on. But a worldly attitude also includes being hypercritical of our brethren (), and planning for the future without really including God in our plans. James chapter 4 reminds us that there is more much involved in being a Christian than just planning ahead or using your talents, abilities and financial resources in a prudent manner. All self-starters, all conservative thinkers, and all hard workers are not necessarily right with God. More is needed to be right with God than rugged individualism.

"The following industrious businessman who make careful and elaborate plans without any regard for God. The various activities may not be improper, but if God is ignored, they are worldly" (Kent p. 160).

"Come now, you who say, "Today or tomorrow, we shall go to such and such a city, and spend a year there and engage in business and make a profit"".

"Come now"-Somewhat like our "come, come now". It is a way of saying, "Take a good look at what you are really saying". The King James, "Go to now", is an expression that sounds strange to our ears, but in times past was a way getting someone"s attention.

"you who say"-There is some discussion among commentators concerning who is being addressed in this section. Many assume that James is rebuking the arrogance of Jewish businessmen. But why would James suddenly start talking to non-Christians, in a letter than has been thus far directed right at Christians? In addition, the attitude, "if the Lord wills" (), won"t help an unbeliever unless they first become a Christian. But such a attitude would be the repentance necessary by one who is already a Christian.

"Today or tomorrow"-indicating that these were real plans and not just pipe dreams.

"we shall go to such and such a city"-Barclay notes, "So the picture is the picture of a man looking at a map. He points at a certain spot on it, and says, "Here is a new city where there are great trade chances. I"ll go there; and I"ll get in on the ground floor; and I"ll trade for a year or so; and I"ll make my fortune, and come back rich"" (p. 133). Hence a person could return, buy a large piece of property, become a wealthy landowner or gentlemen farmer and enjoy the good life. Note, nothing has really changed. The same attitude to make it rich, the same high hopes and confident expectations have fueled people during the gold rush, and still fuel people today.

Points To Note:

1. The people being rebuked probably included God in many other aspects of their lives (i.e. worship services, and so on). But in their business plans, they have left God out. These aren"t atheists, rather they are brethren who are forgetting that God is to be included in every aspect of their lives. But how often do we tend to want to exclude God from a certain area of our lives? 2. We should be impressed that people in the first century world, far from being primitive, were quite the travelers. Roads, shipping and communications in the Roman Empire were well organized. Kent notes, "Travel, while not comfortable or luxurious by modern standards, was nevertheless regularly done. The New Testament itself reveals the readiness with which Paul could travel great distances. An example from the business world is the situation of Aquila and Priscilla, whose travels can be reconstructed from the New Testament data: Rome to Corinth (Acts 18:2-3); Corinth to Ephesus (18:18-19); Ephesus to Rome (Romans 16:3-5); Rome to Ephesus (2 Timothy 4:19)" (p. 160). 3. Good old American ingenuity is not a substitute for Christianity. Carefully note, the people in this section are self-motivated, they aren"t lazy. They are industrious, they are self-starters, they believe in the work ethic, they are not wanting a handout, they want to make their own way in life---and yet, God rebukes them.

"and spend a year there and engage in business and make a profit"-The expression "engage in business" is translated from a Greek word, from whence we get the English word "emporium". It means to traffic, carry on trade, to go a trading.

Points To Note:

1. Carefully note that there is nothing wrong with conducting business and making a profit. God endorses the private ownership of property, goods and making legitimate profit (Acts 5:4). God also endorses hard work, providing for one"s family and attending to your own business (Ephesians 4:28; 1 Thessalonians 4:11-12; 1 Timothy 5:8; 2 Thessalonians 3:10). 2. What is being rebuked is making all these plans without any dependence upon God. Even Christians can make the mistake of thinking that when it comes to business, everything depends upon our own human talents and wisdom. That in this area of our lives, we don"t need any help from God. How many of us go to a job interview without praying first? Enter a business meeting without prayer? Make plans for a career or attempt to further our career or business with little trust in God? "It must not be concluded that James was condemning wise planning. Jesus taught His followers the folly of failing to calculate one"s resources before beginning some enterprise (Luke 14:28-32). What is denounced is planning that leaves God out, planning that thinks human ingenuity alone is all that is necessary" (Kent p. 161). 3. Every Christian at any age can fall into the above trap. Young couples can make all sorts of plans for a house, children and so on---with very little dependence upon God. We can leave God out of our retirement plans, make huge and far reaching financial decisions without praying to God, plan our future education and career, plan our children"s educational future---with very little trust in God. And why is this so? Is it because we tend to think that God can"t help us with such decisions? Or, is it because we inwardly believe that practicing Christianity and being successful in business are opposites? If the truth were told, I sometimes think that while we believe that God knows what He is doing and saying about eternal life and what one must do to be saved, we"re really not sure if God knows what He is talking about when the Bible touches upon the way we conduct ourselves in business. We tend to trust human wisdom, human authors and human experts in the business realm more than we trust in divine wisdom.

These verses should make us really think, "Why are we a Christian?" One writer noted, "Christians today frequently pride themselves on being different from the world, but in reality they are usually only different from a particular segment of the world….Because we cling to conservative American values, we tell ourselves that we"re acting independently of our culture. But conservative attitudes can be just as much a part of the world as liberal ones….We"re only fooling ourselves when we equate conservative attitudes with godly attitudes"

The point is that often we think we are really doing good because we believe in the work ethic, and we are working hard ourselves, without realizing that many people with the same attitude are lost! Are we a Christian merely because we naturally like various conservative ideas that we find in the Bible, or are we a Christian because we have realized that we cannot live without God? And that we have come to love Him with our whole mind, heart, soul and strength?

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Dunagan, Mark. "Commentary on James 4:13". "Mark Dunagan Commentaries on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/dun/james-4.html. 1999-2014.

Gary Hampton Commentary on Selected Books

"Are You Listening?"

V. E. Howard, a great gospel preacher, often stopped in the middle of an important point and asked, "Are you listening?" Usually, those who were not, begin doing so at that time. James says "Come now" to get the same effect. They were making great plans for the future without bringing God into their planning. It"s as if they thought it was all up to them and they were dependent on no one. Such planning without God is a serious mistake (James 4:13).

In warning against covetousness, Jesus told a parable about a rich man. His ground brought forth a great yield. When contemplating what to do with all the abundance, the rich man failed to consider his fellow man or God"s wishes. Instead, he resolved to tear down his barns and build bigger ones so that he might retire. "But God said to him, "You fool! This night your soul will be required of you; then whose will those things be which you have provided?" So is he who lays up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God" (Luke 12:16-21).

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Hampton, Gary. "Commentary on James 4:13". "Gary Hampton Commentary on Selected Books". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ghc/james-4.html. 2014.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

Go to = Come. Greek. age. Imperative mood of ago, used as an adverb. Here and James 5:1.

such a = this.

and. Note the Fig, Polysyndeton. App-6.

continue. Literally make, or do. Compare Acts 20:3. Figure of speech Synecdoche. App-6.

buy and sell = trade. Greek. emporeuomai. Only here and 2 Peter 2:3. Compare Matthew 22:5. John 2:16. This eagerness to travel for trade purposes is a prominent characteristic of the Jew of to-day.

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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on James 4:13". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/james-4.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

Go to now, ye that say, To day or to morrow we will go into such a city, and continue there a year, and buy and sell, and get gain:

Go to now - `Come now:' to excite attention.

Ye that say - `boasting of the morrow.' Today or tomorrow - as if ye had the free choice of cipher day as a certainty. So 'Aleph (') B, Vulgate. But A, 'Today and tomorrow.'

Such a city - literally, this the city. This city here.

Continue there a year - spend a year. They imply that when this year is out, they purpose settling plans for years to come.

Buy and sell. Their plans are all worldly.

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Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on James 4:13". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/james-4.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(13) Ye that say . . . .—The Apostle would reason next with the worldly; not merely those abandoned to pleasure, but any and all absorbed in the quest of gain or advancement. The original is represented a little more closely, thus: Today and tomorrow we will go into this city, and spend a year there, and trade and get gain. “Mortals think all men mortal but themselves;” yet who does not boast himself of tomorrow (Proverbs 27:1), in spite of a thousand proverbs; and reckon on the wondrous chance of

“That untravelled world, whose margin fades

For ever and for ever as he roams?”

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Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on James 4:13". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/james-4.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Go to now, ye that say, To day or to morrow we will go into such a city, and continue there a year, and buy and sell, and get gain:
Go to
5:1; Genesis 11:3,4,7; Ecclesiastes 2:1; Isaiah 5:5
To day
Proverbs 27:1; Isaiah 56:12; Luke 12:17-20
and buy
Isaiah 24:2; 56:11; Ezekiel 7:12; 1 Corinthians 7:30
Reciprocal: Genesis 27:45 - then I;  Judges 19:9 - to morrow;  1 Kings 19:2 - to morrow;  1 Kings 22:27 - until I come in peace;  2 Kings 5:5 - go;  2 Chronicles 33:21 - two years;  Job 17:11 - purposes;  Psalm 4:6 - many;  Psalm 10:3 - boasteth;  Psalm 121:8 - thy going out;  Ecclesiastes 10:14 - a man;  Jeremiah 18:11 - go to;  Lamentations 3:37 - saith;  Ezekiel 28:5 - and by;  Malachi 1:4 - but;  Luke 12:19 - for;  Acts 24:25 - when;  Romans 15:28 - I will;  1 Corinthians 7:29 - that both;  Hebrews 3:7 - To day

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Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on James 4:13". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/james-4.html.

E.M. Zerr's Commentary on Selected Books of the New Testament

Go to is from AGE, a Greek word that Thayer defines, "Come! come now!" It is a pointed expression made to someone, calling attention to foolish presumptions. The things mentioned are not necessarily wrong in themselves, but the folly is in taking it for granted that nothing can prevent it.

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Zerr, E.M. "Commentary on James 4:13". E.M. Zerr's Commentary on Selected Books of the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/znt/james-4.html. 1952.

Stanley Derickson - Notes on Selected Books

Go to now, ye that say, To day or to morrow we will go into such a city, and continue there a year, and buy and sell, and get gain: 14 Whereas ye know not what [shall be] on the morrow. For what [is] your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away. 15 For that ye [ought] to say, If the Lord will, we shall live, and do this, or that.

There may be a play on words in the original here. The term translated "tomorrow" seems to be derived from a term that means a breeze. The use of the word tomorrow in relation to life being a vapor, may imply not only life is tentative, but also "tomorrow may be tentative. None of us know what tomorrow will bring - it is all nebulous until it is history.

The thought of "vanisheth away" seems to be that it passes due to outside forces. We know that when our time comes, it will come due to God"s infinite wisdom and timing, thus we have no control over when it will be - thus the thought of vapor - we have no idea if tomorrow will even occur for us as an individual.

This might apply some to the question of whether suicide is wrong or not. In Oregon we have doctor assisted suicide - the technical name for it is euthanasia, but we don"t use that term in Oregon, for many find it offensive. The state is assisting people to do that which God"s word tells us is His prerogative. The state and those doctors involved are going against God as much as the one that takes those pills.

Suicide will not keep one out of heaven, but the state and doctors should not be a part of it, lest they be held accountable in some manner when they face their maker. I would even guess that those that voted for such legislation will face their creator in some manner for their vote.

This passage speaks to God"s will in our lives. There is a wide diversity on just how we relate to God"s will, and just how much control He desires in our lives. Some allow Him little input into their lives, while others tend to look to God for each and every decision of life, even to the buying of a pair of shoes. Just what is the right amount of God"s involvement in our lives? Is the first person less spiritual than the second person? Is the first person in error or in sin because they allow so little control to God?

If we believe in the concept of servanthood, we would opt to the total control end of the spectrum, while if we reject God"s right to be our master, then what control could He want. Servanthood is the norm in Scripture and should be the line of thought in the believers life. If it is not then there is not a proper relationship between the Father and His child.

I am not saying we have to stop and bow our heads and pray for guidance on that pair of pink tennies, but in our minds we certainly should be doing some evaluation. Are these necessary, are they honoring to God, and listening to the Spirit"s moving - God is interested in our shoes, He is interested in our every need. We ought to include Him in our daily business as if He was an integrated part of our nature - indeed, He is but we need to allow Him control.

Years ago I WANTED a turntable to play records on. I capitalized "wanted" because it was a want and not a need. We had one that worked fairly well, but I wanted a better one.

My employer had a nice one, but was a few dollars more than I wanted to spend. I also found one across the street from where I worked for the right price and was contemplating the purchase. I just didn"t feel comfortable about going ahead so I decided to wait. As I was sitting in the car before driving home I asked the Lord if I was doing the right thing. I opened my pocket testament and the words that my eyes landed on were "purchased a field." This was speaking of Judas and his wrong doing. Naturally that didn"t relate to a turntable so was about to go back and make the purchase. As I opened the door "purchased a field" hit me - purchased a field, or buy elsewhere. This was a negative context and maybe I shouldn"t make a purchase elsewhere. I closed the door and drove home.

The next day as I walked into work my employer called me into the back of the shop and pointed to a great looking turntable and asked, "Stan, can you use that, it is free. Someone left it months ago and if you don"t want it, it is going into the trash, we need the room." I took the unit home and it worked perfectly for many years until we sold it.

I could have bought the one I could afford, but God wanted me to have something much better, and for free. Had I not been considering Him in my decision I would have missed out on a great blessing.

I might add that I am not a strong believer in opening the Word to see what magic answer is there, but I must admit that God has spoken to me very clearly on a number of occasions in this manner. I would also admit that at other times, the words that my eyes landed on might as well been gibberish, because they had no meaning to me at the time.

Knowing God"s will is a combination of many things, reading the Word on a regular basis, praying, listening to the Spirit"s moving, using good common sense and anything else that can reveal His will to us in a Biblical manner.

Take time in your life to be sure you include Him in your decisions; you will be blessed by including Him in your life in a detailed manner.

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Bibliographical Information
Derickson, Stanley. "Commentary on James 4:13". "Stanley Derickson - Notes on Selected Books". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/sdn/james-4.html.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

3. And of arrogant conversational ignoring of God, James 4:13-17.

13.Go to now—An interjection to excite attention. The modern phrase would be, Come now. The old phrase is, perhaps, the more accurate, as it aims to incite to right procedure. The number of precise particulars, to-morrow, such a city, a year, buy, sell, get gain, presumes upon many contingent points in which there is probability of failure, especially the closing one, which is the real aim of all the rest.

It is—A preferred reading is, ye are. It is not our life, but even ourselves, that is an appearing and then vanishing vapour or mist.

 

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Bibliographical Information
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on James 4:13". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/james-4.html. 1874-1909.

The Expositor's Greek Testament

James 4:13.— : this expression of disapproval occurs only here and in James 5:1 in the N.T.; although it is used here and there in the Septuagint, it is the rendering of different Hebrew words; one may compare, though it is not the equivalent of , the Aramaic expression of disapproval (“Ah you!” literally “Woe unto you”). is used with either a singular or a plural subject, cf.Judges 19:6; 2 Kings 4:24.— : Cf.Proverbs 27:1, , . There is a Rabbinical saying, in Sanhed., 100b, which runs: “Care not for the morrow, for ye know not what a day may bring forth. Perhaps he may not be [alive] on the morrow, and so have cared for a world that does not exist for him” (quoted by Edersheim, Life and Times, ii. 539); cf.Luke 12:16 ff; Luke 13:32-33.— : 2 Peter 2:3 is the only other passage in the N.T. in which this word occurs; it means primarily “to travel,” then to travel for the purpose of trading, and finally “to trade” simply.— : a rare form; “the Attic is , with aorist , Ion. and late Attic , aorist ; the latter occurs often in the N.T.” (Mayor).

 

 

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Bibliographical Information
Nicol, W. Robertson, M.A., L.L.D. "Commentary on James 4:13". The Expositor's Greek Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/egt/james-4.html. 1897-1910.

The Bible Study New Testament

13. Now listen to me. “You act as though everything were yours to decide, and that God had nothing to do with the events of the world!”

 

 

 

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Bibliographical Information
Ice, Rhoderick D. "Commentary on James 4:13". "The Bible Study New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ice/james-4.html. College Press, Joplin, MO. 1974.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

13Go to now. He condemns here another kind of presumption, that many, who ought to have depended on God’s providence, confidently settled what they were to do, and arranged their plans for a long time, as though they had many years at their own disposal, while they were not sure, no not even of one moment. Solomon also sharply ridicules this kind of foolish boasting, when he says that

“men settle their ways in their heart,
and the Lord in the mean time rules the tongue.”
(
Proverbs 16:1.)

And it is a very insane thing to undertake to execute what we cannot pronounce with our tongue. James does not reprove the form of speaking, but rather the arrogance of mind, that men should forget their own weakness, and speak thus presumptuously; for even the godly, who think humbly of themselves, and acknowledge that their steps are guided by the will of God, may yet sometimes say, without any qualifying clause, that they will do this or that. It is indeed right and proper, when we promise anything as to future time, to accustom ourselves to such words as these, “If it shall please the Lord,” “If the Lord will permit.” But no scruple ought to be entertained, as though it were a sin to omit them; for we read everywhere in the Scriptures that the holy servants of God spoke unconditionally of future things, when yet they had it as a principle fixed in their minds, that they could do nothing without the permission of God. Then as to the practice of saying, “If the Lord will or permit,” it ought to be carefully attended to by all the godly.

But James roused the stupidity of those who disregarded God’s providence, and claimed for themselves a whole year, though they had not a single moment in their own power; the gain which was afar off they promised to themselves, though they had no possession of that which was before their feet.

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Bibliographical Information
Calvin, John. "Commentary on James 4:13". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/james-4.html. 1840-57.