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James: Jewish Roots, Catholic Fruits

James: Jewish Roots, Catholic Fruits

By Shane Kapler

144 pp

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About the Book

The Epistle of James has long been a reminder that the Tree of Life—Christ’s Cross and Gospel—was planted in rich, Jewish soil. James, steeped in Israel’s wisdom literature, law, and prophets, and set aflame by his encounter with the Risen One, passionately addresses matters of spiritual life and death. Shane Kapler looks at the epistle through the eyes of its first-century Jewish-Christian readers, unpacking its lavish content and showing how this inspired text has yielded, century after century, abundant fruit for the Church. Discover how:

  • James, Paul, Peter, and John all agree in their teaching on justification

  • A distinction was drawn between “works of the law” and works accomplished by grace

  • Final salvation is a synergy of faith and graced works

  • Our sufferings, when united to Christ’s, become conduits of grace for us and others

  • Tradition acted as a source for the written gospels

  • Social and economic justice are integral to Christianity

  • The sacrament of the anointing of the sick effects spiritual and physical healing

  • God responds in powerful, miraculous ways to the prayers of his holy ones

Readers will also find an in-depth explanation of James’s identity as a “brother of the Lord,” and what the historical reception of his epistle reveals about the formation of the New Testament canon and Christ’s mechanism for overcoming doctrinal divisions.



“A marvelously comprehensive study of the canonicity, history, and author of the Epistle of James, as well as an excellent summary of its topics. Everyone from professors to laity should benefit from Kapler’s accessible style.”


O.P., retreat master, EWTN program host

“I will never look at James or his letter the same way again. Topics are masterfully explored and explained.”


author of I’m Catholic. Now What?

“Excellent for scholars and novices. Kapler reveals many golden nuggets.”


author of Crossing the Tiber

“Kapler unashamedly shows how the catholic epistles are truly Catholic. The section on the origin of the canon is alone worth the price of the book! This work packs a satisfying punch—loaded with information and encouraging of real faith.”


Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary

“Shane Kapler is a vital voice in the Church for those seeking a better understanding of Scripture.”


author of Ignite: Pray the Bible Like Never Before

“Kapler does an outstanding job of digging into the Old Testament foundations for James’s teaching—a great guide for individual and parish bible studies.”


host of Hands On Apologetics 

“A deeply biblical tour of one of the earliest New Testament writings that is homiletic without being preachy and Catholic without being contentious.”


author of Evangelical Exodus

“There are few Catholic writers today more gifted at teaching the New Testament. This book is illuminating, deep, and gleaming with spiritual insight.”


Assistant Director at Word on Fire Institute

About the Author

For the past 30 years Shane Kapler has been involved in evangelism and catechesis within the Archdiocese of St. Louis. His previously published works include The Epistle of the Hebrews and the Seven Core Beliefs of Catholics, Marrying the Rosary to the Divine Mercy Chaplet, and Through, With, and In Him.

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