A Sharp Tongue-Taming the Tongue

Seen On a Church Sign

sharp tongue.jpg

James 3:1,2

My brethren, be not many masters, knowing that we shall receive the greater condemnation. For in many things we offend all. If any man offend not in word, the same is a perfect man, and able also to bridle the whole body.

The subject of the tongue comes up quite regularly in God’s Word; therefore we can assume two things:

It is a problem for us

It is important to God

We are going to spend some time on this sign, and this subject because it is a problem for us, and it is important to God. We may spend a couple of weeks pondering and studying about the mighty tongue.

James, my personal favorite author in The Bible, spent a lot of time talking about our tongues, and how they are used and abused, and we will operate from that Book during most of this.

Read James Chapter 3 here

Let’s get started shall we?

James apparently had strong feelings about the role of the tongue, or the words we speak, in the life of the believer.  He actually mentions it in every single chapter of his book, in fact. He mentions it in the following passages: 1:19,26; 2:12; 3:5,6,8; 4:11; and 5:12.

Reading what James has to say about our speech and we can see the idea of the tongue not only being the reflection of what is in our hearts, but also representative of the depravity of our nature.

Also, since James’ primary objective with his Epistle seems to be to teach believers how to behave, it follows in line that one of his lessons here is that the ability to control one’s tongue is a mark of a mature believer.

Let’s just take a look at some of the thoughts God shared with us regarding the tongue in His Word for today’s discussion.

When Paul was illustrating to us all our fallen condition, in Romans 3:13-15, he listed 5 organs of the body which are common vehicles for sin: throat, tongue, lips, mouth and feet. It seems very significant that four of the five have to do with our speech!

Some of the most Godly men in the Bible had issues holding their tongues, as well; Moses (Psalms 106:32-33), Isaiah (Isaiah 6:5,7), and Job (Job 40:4) all had tongue issues at some point.

The tongue is described using many words in Scripture: wicked, deceitful, perverse, filthy, corrupt, flattering, slanderous, gossiping, blasphemous, foolish, boasting, and many others.

Jesus even had thoughts about our tongues

Matthew 12:36,37 But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.

Our words are similar to a sound wave broadcast into the air. Eventually, that sound wave will reach the far parts of  space in a never ending journey; not only that, but the trip cannot be cancelled. Once that sound wave of our words start their journey, they cannot be brought back to the source and packed away.

What do our words say about our walk with Christ? If our words are a reflection of our heart, then what do we reveal about our heart when we speak?

Next: The tongues of teachers


Categories: Contributors

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17 replies

  1. More dangerous that some instruments. Can make or destroy.


  2. Good one, Wally. When we consider that Christ Himself is often called The Word, the power behind the words we speak can really take on a whole new meaning. There is godly power behind our words, for good or bad.

    I love the last part of that scripture, “If any man offend not in word, the same is a perfect man, and able also to bridle the whole body.” There are some who lead by example so well, they do “bridle the body.” You just want to follow them.

    I see that on the internet too, calm, rational, not engaging in personal attacks, I think I’ll listen to what you have to say. Than there are the others…. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Tongues not only speak, they type, and text. There are times when I think I should just shut-up because the thought of being held accountable for every word is astounding. Oh Lord! I am a woman of unclean lips! sigh…

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ha excellent point Pam. The definition of tongue has changed with technology. And for the record I have never see you behave in an unseemly manner. And I have seen you provoked some by another and yet you didn’t respond in kind.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Well, there is a reason that Jesus warns we should have holiness that exceeds that of the scribes…actually, it is my husband who probably, gets more of my uncontrolled tongue than anyone else which is pathetic since I really do love him. Of course, my love for him means he can get under my skin more than any other human being one earth. What we are online is only a snap-shot of who we are in life. I want holiness greater than my scribe-ness.(sounds like a good poem) I’m still a work in progress.:0)

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Reblogged on http://theunfetteredpreacher.com
    Seems we are on the same page again….God really is something

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Retweeted this as “mothers-in-law take heed!!” (I am one….)

    Liked by 1 person


  1. A Sharp Tongue – Taming the Tongue by Wally Fry | theunfetteredpreacher

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