4 Why do you fight and argue among yourselves? Isn’t it because of your sinful longings? They fight inside you.
2You want something, but you can’t get it. You kill and want what others have. But you can’t have what you want. You argue and fight. You don’t have what you want, because you don’t ask God. 3When you do ask for something, you don’t receive it. Why? Because you ask for the wrong reason. You want to spend your money on your sinful pleasures.
4You are not faithful to God. Don’t you know that to be a friend of the world is to hate God? Anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God. 5Don’t you know what Scripture says? The spirit that God caused to live in us wants us to belong only to God. Don’t you think Scripture has a reason for saying that? 6God continues to give us more grace. That’s why Scripture says,
“God opposes those who are proud.
But he gives grace to those who are not.” (Proverbs 3:34)
7So obey God. Stand up to the devil. He will run away from you. 8Come near to God, and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners. Make your hearts pure, you who can’t make up your minds.
9Be full of sorrow. Cry and sob. Change your laughter to crying. Change your joy to sadness. 10Bow down to the Lord. He will lift you up.
11My brothers and sisters, don’t speak against one another. Anyone who speaks against another believer speaks against the law. And anyone who judges another believer judges the law. When you judge the law, you are not keeping it. Instead, you are acting as if you were its judge.
12There is only one Lawgiver and Judge. He is the One who is able to save life or destroy it. But who are you to judge your neighbor?
13Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city. We will spend a year there. We will buy and sell and make money.” 14You don’t even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? It is a mist that appears for a little while. Then it disappears. 15Instead, you should say, “If it pleases the Lord, we will live and do this or that.”
16As it is, you are proud. You brag about it. That kind of bragging is evil. 17So when you know the good things you should do and don’t do them, you sin.
About New International Reader’s Version (1998)
The New International Reader’s Version (NIrV) was developed to help early readers understand the Bible. Begun in 1992, the NIrV is a simplification of the New International Version (NIV). The NIrV uses shorter words and sentences so that those with a typical fourth grade reading level can comprehend what they are reading. The chapters have been separated into shorter sections and most have titles that clearly indicate what the section is all about. The NIrV will be a valuable translation to those for whom English is a second language. The NIrV still relies on the best and oldest copies of the Hebrew and Greek manuscripts for its translation, guaranteeing that those who read it are getting the actual Word of God.
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Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL READER’S VERSION™. Copyright © 1995, 1996, 1998 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.
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