Lesson 10

The Tongue

James 3:   And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it
defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of hell.

The tongue can be our most powerful tool or our most dangerous weapon.  The difference is in how we
use it.

Here are some basic guidelines:

1.         Dedicate your heart and your tongue to the Lord daily.

Psalms  19:14  Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O
LORD, my strength, and my redeemer.

2.         Put your heart in tune with God’s.

Psalms 119:11 Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.

3.         Assume responsibility for every word you speak.

Matthew  12:36  But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account
thereof in the day of judgment.

4.  Ask those around you which words you use that are offensive.

Proverbs  27:17 Iron sharpeneth iron; so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend.

5.         Commit yourself to the purpose of giving a good report and, when it is necessary, follow Matthew
18.

Matthew  18:15 Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between
thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother.

6.         Fulfill past promises and think carefully before making any new promises.

Psalms  15:4  In whose eyes a vile person is contemned; but he honoureth them that fear the LORD. He
that sweareth to his own hurt, and changeth not.

7.         Ask forgiveness for any unloving words or attitudes.

James   3:2  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.

8.         Learn how to give words that will encourage, comfort, inspire, and edify.

Colossians   4:6  Let your speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought
to answer every man.

12 Tongue Tamers to Memorize

1.  Proverbs  13: 3. He that keepeth his mouth keepeth his life: but he that openeth wide his lips shall
have destruction.

2.  Proverbs  29: 20. Seest thou a man that is hasty in his words? there is more hope of a fool than of him.

3.  Proverbs  18: 13. He that answereth a matter before he heareth it, it is folly and shame unto him.

4.  Matthew  12: 36  But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account
thereof in the day of judgment.

5.  Ephesians   4: 29  Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to
the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.

6.  Proverbs  15: 23 A man hath joy by the answer of his mouth: and a word spoken in due season, how
good is it!

7.  Proverbs  21: 23 Whoso keepeth his mouth and his tongue keepeth his soul from troubles.

8.  Proverbs  15: 1 A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger.
    4 A wholesome tongue is a tree of life: but perverseness therein is a breach in the spirit.

9.  Proverbs  17: 28  Even a fool, when he holdeth his peace, is counted wise: and he that shutteth his
lips is esteemed a man of understanding.

10.  Proverbs  18: 8 The words of a talebearer are as wounds, and they go down into the innermost parts
of the belly.

11.  1 Peter   3: 10  For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and
his lips that they speak no guile:

12.  James   1: 26  If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth
his own heart, this man's religion is vain.

A scientist has found out that poison from the skin of a tiny South American tree frog is far more toxic
than any other known venom. Rain forest Indians use the venom from the skin of the kokoi frog to
poison their blowgun arrows.

There is a poison even more deadly--the poison from an evil tongue.
"The tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity." (James 3:6)

"With their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips: whose mouth is full of
cursing and bitterness" (Rom. 3:13, 14)

Have you ever squeezed too much toothpaste onto your toothbrush? And then have you ever tried
squeezing toothpaste back into the tube? An old proverb says, "Three things once released will not
return again: an opportunity neglected, and arrow released from its bows, and a word spoken in haste."
Words spoken in haste are all those words we speak without weighing how each could be understood by
the hearer, all those words we utter in jest, and everything we say without thinking.

The Bible mentions the tongue about 215 times (Prov. 18:21; 21:23, etc.). When it speaks kind, thoughtful
and true words, there is happiness; when it speaks mean, untrue, angry or complaining words, there is
trouble.

Someone has said, "God gave us two ears and one mouth--that ought to tell us something."