Patience and Perfection
James 1:4
But let patience have her perfect work, that you may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.

1. The perfection of our graces is not discovered till we are put upon great trials. As a pilot's skill is discerned in a storm, so is a Christian's grace in many troubles.

2. The exercise of grace must not be interrupted till it be full and perfect. Ordinary spirits may be a little raised for a time, but they fall again (Galatians 5:7). It is not enough to begin; our proceedings in religion must lie answerable to our beginnings. While you are in the world, go on to a more perfect discovery of patience, and follow them theft "through faith," and a continued "patience have inherited the promises" (Hebrews 6:12).

3. Christians must press on to perfection. "That ye may be perfect and entire, nothing wanting."(1) Christians will be aspiring to absolute perfection. They are led on to growth by this desire: they hate sin so perfectly that they cannot be quiet till it be utterly abolished. First, they go to God for justification, then for sanctification, then for glorification. And as they are bent against sin with a keen hatred, so they are carried on with an importunate desire of grace. They that have true grace will not be contented with a little grace; no measures will serve their turn.

(2) Christians must be actually perfect in all points and parts of Christianity. As they will have faith, they will have patience; as patience, love, and zeal.

(3) They aim at the perfection of duration, that, as they would be wanting in no part of duty, so in no part of their lives. Subsequent acts of apostasy made our former crown to wither (2 John 8).

(T. Manton.)

Parallel Verses
KJV: But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.

WEB: Let endurance have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.

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