James Chapter Three



1. My friends, don’t wish too readily to be teachers of the word, as that certainly brings greater scrutiny and judgment upon you.

2. There are many ways in which we can harm others, and if anyone can harm absolutely nobody else in what they say they are the ideal person, and in total control of their entire being.

3. We can control how a horse behaves simply by using a bit and bridle.

4. In the same way, a sailor can control a large boat in strong winds if he knows how to skillfully use the rudder.

5. So the tongue might be small, but it has the power to influence things of huge consequence. And look what a small spark of fire can end up doing to an entire forest.

6. The tongue is like a spark of fire. It can be a powerhouse of evil. Our tongues can do damage to our entire beings and spark off a vicious cycle of destruction, and hell itself can be the flash point.

7. Mankind has the power to tame any kind of animal, or snake, or creature of the sea.

8. But no-one has ever totally tamed the tongue. It can be a nasty wild thing, and deadly poisonous.

9. We use it to praise and bless God our Father, and then we use it to curse and vilify other people, who are made in the image of God.

10. It is just not right to use the same mouth to both bless and to curse.

11. You won’t find a fresh spring gushing out both sweet and bitter water.

12. You will never see a fig tree produce olives, or a grapevine producing figs, just like a fresh spring won’t be the source of salt water and fresh water.

13. If you are to be known as being wise and as understanding truth, then let your lives produce wise behavior accompanied by a humble attitude.

14. But if your lives are driven by a resentful and malicious heart of contention, then don’t feel proud of that and do such a grave injustice to what is right and true.

15. That kind of attitude doesn’t come from above. It is what the world serves up, self indulgent and even demonic.

16. Wherever you see this attitude of malice and contention, it will be followed by confusion and all kinds of corrupt behavior.

17. The kind of wisdom that comes from heaven has is born out of innocence and brings peace. It is gentle and can be reasoned with. It shows kindness and creates a pleasant atmosphere, with no hypocrisy or unjust favoritism.

18. The fruit of that kind of harmonious life will drop seeds of peace from a life that is creating peace.

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