Archive for the ‘tongue’ Category

James 3: Extended Teaching on Use of the Tongue

January 25, 2014 Leave a comment

My brothers and sisters, do not encourage a large number of you to become teachers because teachers will be held to a higher standard. We all stumble along the way. If a person never speaks hurtful words or shouts in anger or profanity,then he has achieved perfection. The one who can control his tongue can also control the rest of his body. It’s like when we place a metal bit into a horse’s mouth to ride it; we can control its entire body with the slightest movement of our hands. Have you ever seen a massive ship sailing effortlessly across the waterDespite its immense size and the fact that it is propelled by mighty winds, a small rudder directs the ship in any direction the pilot chooses. It’s just the same with our tongues! It’s a small muscle, capable of marvelous undertakings.

And do you know how many forest fires begin with a single ember from a small campfire? The tongue is a blazing fire seeking to ignite an entire world of vices. The tongue is unique among all parts of the body because it is capable of corrupting the whole body. If that were not enough, it ignites and consumes the course of creation with a fuel that originates in hell itself. Humanity is capable of taming every bird and beast in existence, even reptiles and sea creatures great and small. But no man has ever demonstrated the ability to tame his own tongue! It is a spring of restless evil, brimming with toxic poisons. Ironically this same tongue can be both an instrument of blessing to our Lord and Father and a weapon that hurls curses upon others who are created in God’s own image. One mouth streams forth both blessings and curses. My brothers and sisters, this is not how it should be. Does a spring gush crystal clear freshwater and moments later spurt out bitter salt water? My brothers and sisters, does a fig tree produce olives? Is there a grapevine capable of growing figs? Can salt water give way to freshwater?

Who in your community is understanding and wise? Let his example, which is marked by wisdom and gentleness, blaze a trail for others. If your heart is one that bleeds dark streams of jealousy and selfishness, do not be so proud that you ignore your depraved state. The wisdom of this world should never be mistaken for heavenly wisdom; it originates below in the earthly realms, with the demons. Any place where you find jealousy and selfish ambition, you will discover chaos and evil thriving under its rule. Heavenly wisdom centers on purity, peace, gentleness, deference, mercy, and other good fruits untainted by hypocrisy. The seed that flowers into righteousness will always be planted in peace by those who embrace peace (The Voice).

Categories: james, tongue

“Let Your Words Be Few”

January 24, 2014 Leave a comment

God knows what is on the inside. Words and actions are not always necessary. Do not be too hasty to speak your mind before God or too quick to make promises you won’t keep, for God is in heaven and you are on earth. Therefore, watch your tongue; let your words be few (Ecclesiastes 5:2, The Voice).

Categories: Ecclesiastes, tongue

Four Tongue Proverbs

January 22, 2014 Leave a comment
  1. Proverbs 6:17
    Eyes that look down on others, a tongue that can’t be trusted, hands that shed innocent blood,

  2. Proverbs 10:31
    Wisdom flows from the mouths of those who do right, but tongues that twist the truth will be cut out.

  3. Proverbs 25:15
    Patience can soften up a leader, and a tender tongue can break even bone.

  4. Proverbs 25:23
    Acts of kindness, especially when we know they are undeserved, awaken a slumbering conscience, stimulate sorrow, and perhaps even effect a change. They are the best ways to turn an enemy into a friend. As surely as a north wind drives the rain before it, a backbiting tongue brings angry looks.
Categories: proverbs, tongue

The Tongue in Psalms

January 21, 2014 Leave a comment

The word appears in the Psalms 22 times, more than any other book of the Bible.

For the worship leader. A contemplative song of David when the Edomite Doeg told Saul that David had received help from Ahimelech.

Psalm 52 recalls the callous way Doeg and Saul put to death the 85 priests of Nob (1 Samuel 22:6–19). The psalm ends with a memorable image: the one who keeps faith with God is like a lush olive tree cared for in His garden. While those who do not trust in Him are snatched up and torn away, those who do right will flourish under His care.

Why do you boast of all the trouble you stir up, O mighty one,
when the constant, unfailing love of God is what truly lasts?
Have you listened to yourself?
Your tongue is like a sharp razor,
full of lies that slash and tear right to the soul.
You’ve fallen in love with evil and have no interest in what He calls good.
You prefer your own lies to speaking what is true.


You love words that destroy people, don’t you,
lying tongue?

You won’t be smiling
when the True God brings His justice and destroys you forever.
He will come into your home, snatch you away,
and pull you from the land of the living (Psalm 52:1-5, The Voice).

Categories: psalm, tongue

The Tongue in Job

January 20, 2014 Leave a comment

The word “tongue” appears in the book of Job 10 times, more than any other book of the Bible besides Psalms.

When we argue passionately about the problem of pain, it is the tongue (and in contemporary experience, the written word as well) that causes many of our biggest troubles.

As we learn in Job, shutting up is frequently our best option.

Even as I write these words, I’m uncomfortable. Dissent is what forces evil systems of injustice to change.

Perhaps there’s a distinction between addressing systemic pain and personal pain?

Categories: job, tongue

Topical Study: The Tongue

January 19, 2014 Leave a comment

This is an interesting concept to explore after reading the book of James.

The word tongue appears in The Voice translation 66 times.

Categories: tongue


December 30, 2013 Leave a comment

All of us do many wrong things. But if you can control your tongue, you are mature and able to control your whole body.

By putting a bit into the mouth of a horse, we can turn the horse in different directions. It takes strong winds to move a large sailing ship, but the captain uses only a small rudder to make it go in any direction. Our tongues are small too, and yet they brag about big things.

It takes only a spark to start a forest fire! The tongue is like a spark. It is an evil power that dirties the rest of the body and sets a person’s entire life on fire with flames that come from hell itself. All kinds of animals, birds, reptiles, and sea creatures can be tamed and have been tamed. But our tongues get out of control. They are restless and evil, and always spreading deadly poison.

My dear friends, with our tongues we speak both praises and curses. We praise our Lord and Father, and we curse people who were created to be like God, and this isn’t right. Can clean water and dirty water both flow from the same spring? Can a fig tree produce olives or a grapevine produce figs? Does fresh water come from a well full of salt water? (vv. 2-12, CEV)

Categories: james, tongue

Control Your Tongue

December 14, 2013 Leave a comment

My dear friends, you should be quick to listen and slow to speak or to get angry. If you are angry, you cannot do any of the good things that God wants done. You must stop doing anything immoral or evil. Instead be humble and accept the message that is planted in you to save you.

Obey God’s message! Don’t fool yourselves by just listening to it. If you hear the message and don’t obey it, you are like people who stare at themselves in a mirror and forget what they look like as soon as they leave. But you must never stop looking at the perfect law that sets you free. God will bless you in everything you do, if you listen and obey, and don’t just hear and forget.

If you think you are being religious, but can’t control your tongue, you are fooling yourself, and everything you do is useless. Religion that pleases God the Father must be pure and spotless. You must help needy orphans and widows and not let this world make you evil (vv. 19-27, CEV).

Categories: james, tongue
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