Explore the Bible
November 11 2018
James 3:1-12 (HCSB)
Scientists maintain that a sound wave set in motion continues on forever. If we had sophisticated enough instruments we could capture and listen to the teaching and preaching of Martin Luther Charles Spurgeon the Apostle Paul and even the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. This may sound like fringe science but most cutting-edge science was once considered on the fringe. God doesn’t need sophisticated instruments; He hears every word we speak. Our words will either justify or condemn us (Matt. 12:36-37). In the Book of James the tongue is depicted as a personification of the inner person. Our speech should reflect that we are saved and are living
James held teachers to a higher accountability (James 3:1). He did this because teachers are to ground their students in the teaching and commandments of Jesus. Inherent dangers and responsibilities of teaching require that teachers have control of their words. James expanded this control to all believers (James 3:2). Our tongues will control and/or lead the rest of our bodies like a bit in a horse’s mouth or a rudder on a ship (James 3:3-4). People who can keep their tongues or speech under control can keep their lives under control.
An uncontrolled tongue has the ability to cause great destruction like a small flame can cause a forest fire. It is untamable like a wild animal and full of deadly poison (James 3:8). The tongue is used to bless God and other times it is used to curse man. A fountain doesn’t produce both fresh and bitter water. An olive tree doesn’t produce figs and a fig tree doesn’t produce olives. Saltwater doesn’t produce fresh water. Our tongues can betray us by showing our moral inconsistencies.
I recently heard David Jeremiah say “Be careful what you say; when it is out there you can’t take it back.” All our words need to be under the control of the Holy Spirit. Believers can demonstrate their salvation righteousness and godly maturity by controlling their speech.