Torah observance and good deeds

James is unique in the New Testament biblical canon by its explicit and wholehearted support of Torah-observance, the Law.  This might indicate that Torah observance may have been prevalent among Jewish Christians.  The early first century Didache, and the second century pseudo-Clementine literature reflect a similar ethos, ethical perspective, and position on Torah observance.  James’ call to Torah observance insures salvation, somewhat similar to Matthew.  Perhaps Torah observance may be at the heart of James’s ethics.  This was a strong message against those advocating the rejection of Torah observance.  However, James seems to propose a more radical and demanding interpretation of the law than mainstream Judaism.  There is nothing in James to suggest any relaxation of the demands of the law, since he seems to assume that they are still following the Mosaic law.  For James and for all the Jews, faith is alive only through Torah observance.  In other words, belief demonstrates itself through practice and manifestation. For James, claims about belief are empty, unless they are alive in action, works and deeds.  What do you think about the Torah?

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