James 3:6 The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole person, sets the whole course of his life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell.
Have you ever in any way had a problem controlling your tongue? Be honest now…
I have and still do at times. In the past I had a very bad mouth, I mean really bad as in like a sailor. This is unfortunately more common then you may think.
What does the bible say about the tongue? James 3:6 says the tongue is a world of evil, pretty strong language don’t you think? Is that really justified???
Proverbs 18:21 The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit. The power of life and death…wow. Proverbs 12:13 mentions that an evil man is trapped by his sinful talk. Proverbs 12:22 says that the Lord delights in men who are truthful.
Psalm 64:3 They sharpen their tongues like swords and aim their words like deadly arrows. Words according to the bible have tremendous power, as does the tongue that speaks them. Could it be that we need to seriously reign in our tongues?
Which do you see as better, a physically abusive relationship, or an emotionally abusive relationship? I will answer this later…
Consider James 3:2 We all stumble in many ways. If anyone is never at fault in what he says, he is a perfect man, able to keep his whole body in check.
Consider also James 3:8 but no man can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.
No man can tame the tongue; that is pretty serious…and also true. How many times I have gotten myself into trouble by what comes out of my mouth! Sometimes we stumble in what we say without even meaning to. Unfortunately, the damage is already done. We can’t unsay what has been spoken, but we can be more diligent in what comes out of our mouths to begin with.
What does the Apostle Paul have to say about this? Ephesians 4:29 Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.
We can use the tongue for good, we are not required to use it to hurt others, nor are we supposed to. The tongue has amazing power; it is in fact one of the most powerful things on this earth. Why do you think this is, or do you hold another opinion?
Consider these things if you will.
Out of the mouth comes…
- Praise for our Lord in many forms. Beautiful voices lifted up in song, prayer etc.
- Worship of the Lord
- Witnessing for the Lord
- Praise of family and friends
- Loving words; affirmation, encouragement, affection, etc
Out of the same mouth comes…
- Angry words that hurt others
- Words that demoralize and degrade others
- Boasts and self aggrandizing statements
We all fall when it comes to our tongue; no one succeeds at all times in controlling what they say. To claim otherwise is to not be truthful. We can however learn to be more careful about what we say.
What is the eternal significance of what I am saying?
Is it really important that I say these words?
Will these words of mine cause harm?
It is so easy in the heat of the moment to “say” things we do not really mean. The problem with this is that if we keep saying these things…”I’m sorry” does not hold water anymore. Do you ever have a discussion that turns into an argument and then wonder how that happened? Our choice of words makes things happen, good and bad.
Mom’s advice still holds true…”if you do not have anything nice to say, do not say anything at all”. Is this as hard for others as it is for me at times???
If we learn to think before we speak, pause to consider our words…we will be much better off. Make it a habit to consider what you say before you say it.
Positive words build up negative words tear down. Previously, the question was asked,
“which do you see as better, a physically abusive relationship, or an emotionally abusive relationship?” The obvious answer here is neither one, however if I have to choose between the two, the better one would be a physically abusive relationship. Physical wounds will heal and be gone. The wounds inflicted emotionally will last a long time, and can cause significant damage.
It is important to note here that I am not referring to the escalating abuser who works (his/her) way up to more and more violent acts of abuse. These people are extremely unstable and very dangerous. I stated these things as a comparison only, because it is so important to recognize the tremendous power of our words with others.
This is a whole other post, but I do want to mention that the words, thoughts that go through our mind, things that are not spoken…these have a large impact on us as well.
Ephesians 4:29 Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.