You are not permitted to download, save or email this image. Visit image gallery to purchase the image.
The Cleveland Cavaliers star hit an 18-foot jump shot with 1.1 seconds left in the first quarter to give him 30,001 points, eight of them on the night against the San Antonio Spurs.
He joins a club that includes just one other active player, Dirk Nowitzki (30,837 points).
Also ahead of James on the scoring list are Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (38,387), Karl Malone (36,928), Kobe Bryant (33,643), Michael Jordan (32,292) and Wilt Chamberlain (31,419).
James, 33 years, 24 days old, topped the mark held by Bryant, who scored his 30,000th point when he was 34 years and 104 days old.
James became the fourth fastest to the milestone in terms of number of games played (1107), trailing Chamberlain (941), Jordan (960) and Abdul-Jabbar (1,101).
NBA commissioner Adam Silver used the league's official Twitter account to post: "Congratulations to LeBron on reaching 30,000 points -- yet another milestone in an extraordinary career that continues to inspire. -- Adam"
Nowitzki tweeted, "Congrats @KingJames. Welcome to the club!!!"
Bryant added on his Twitter account: "From #Akron to #30k @KingJames well done my brotha"
James wished himself a preemptive congratulations earlier Tuesday on Instagram, several hours before the game tipped.