This morning James introduces us to a topic that hits home, and that is, the power of the human tongue and the words that we speak (James 3:1-12). Our speech has the capacity to bless others (Ecclesiastes 10:12a) or hurt them terribly (Proverbs 26:22). The unruly tongue is one that is set on fire by hell (James 3:6)! I guess we could call that a devilish counterattack to the Pentecost from heaven in Acts chapter 2 that was associated with cloven tongues of fire (Acts 2:3).
Who reading this article has not been guilty of inappropriate use of the tongue at one time or another? Who reading this article has not been hurt by unkind or cruel words? One of the sad commentaries of the Christian community is the apparent disregard for what that Bible says about how we ought to speak to one another (Ephesians 4:29-31).
Because of the heretical views expressed by the “Positive Confession” and “name it and claim it” groups, the pendulum within the Christian community has swung to the other extreme where careless speaking is not even given a second thought. So, we have replaced positive confession with “hellish” conversations – like backbiting (Romans 1:30), telling tales (Leviticus 19:16; Proverbs 18:8), and slander (Proverbs 10:18b). Lord Jesus, have mercy on us and convict us this morning!!!
A cursory reading of the book of Proverbs reveals just how important our words are (Proverbs 18:21). Have you ever really thought of the words that come out of your mouth and the impact that they have on others, good or bad? From giving praise and glory to God, we put our hands down and then slip right into the trashing of another church or another brother or sister. There is no justification for such language in any portion of God’s Word.
May those cloven tongues that fell on Pentecost fall on each and every one of us this morning and scare the tongues of hell right out of us!!