The Untamable Tongue

“Not many should become teachers, my brothers, knowing that we will receive a stricter judgment, for we all stumble in many ways. If anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a mature man who is also able to control his whole body. Now when we put bits into the mouths of horses to make them obey us, we also guide the whole animal. And consider ships: Though very large and driven by fierce winds, they are guided by a very small rudder wherever the will of the pilot directs. So too, though the tongue is a small part of the body, it boasts great things. Consider how large a forest a small fire ignites. And the tongue is a fire. The tongue, a world of unrighteousness, is placed among the parts of our bodies. It pollutes the whole body, sets the course of life on fire, and is set on fire by hell. Every sea creature, reptile, bird, or animal is tamed and has been tamed by man, but no man can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison. We praise our Lord and Father with it, and we curse men who are made in God’s likeness with it. 10 Praising and cursing come out of the same mouth. My brothers, these things should not be this way. 11 Does a spring pour out sweet and bitter water from the same opening? 12 Can a fig tree produce olives, my brothers, or a grapevine produce figs? Neither can a saltwater spring yield fresh water.”   James 3:1-12

Divine STANDARD for speech

  • We will never be perfect in the sense that Jesus is perfect, but we an grow in Christ and mature spiritually; expressing that maturity through God HONORING speech

DEVASTATING statement against speech

  • A BIT
  • A RUDDER
    • When we allow our tongue to get out of control all is lost; LIFEWRECK” is sure to follow
  • A FIRE
    • The tongue is DEFILED
    • The tongue can be DESTRUCTIVE
  • Like a bit, a rudder or a small spark the tongue has the power to INFLUENCE the rest of our being

The DICHOTOMY of speech

  • The tongue is CONTROLLED by either the flesh or the indwelling Spirit of God

Monday morning application:

  • Our speech is a reflection of our spiritual MATURITY
  • Our speech should REFLECT the nature and character of Jesus
  • As we GROW in Christ our speech will better reflect Christ
  • Our speech should honor God and ENCOURAGE man