james 3:10 meaning

3) Resolved: To set a watch over my mouth. But James’s message also exemplifies what Paul calls the profitability or usefulness of sacred Scripture: “teaching . It is by this means — yes, with private study — that the Word of God begins to do its own spiritual work in us. A seminary colleague once told me how, because of flight delays, he arrived late and very weary at a hotel where he had booked a room. Articles that contain references to James 3. . If we put bits into the mouths of horses so that they obey us, we guide their whole bodies as well. The tongue is “set among our members, staining the whole body.” How careful you are as you put on a dress for a wedding, especially if it is your own. Matthew sees our Lord Jesus as fulfilling the prophecy of the first of the Servant Songs in the second half of the prophecy of Isaiah: He will not quarrel or cry aloud, nor will anyone hear his voice in the streets; a bruised reed he will not break, and a smoldering wick he will not quench. . James may well have been familiar with this picture from common experience in daily life. So, says Jesus, the tongue projects the thoughts and intentions of the heart. But this battle for vocal holiness is a long-running one, and it needs to be waged incessantly, daily, hourly. Then we need to grasp a second principle. God’s holy anger burns against them (5:25). Presumably out of both biblical knowledge and personal experience. I am a wretched man! The most important single aid to my ability to use my tongue for the glory of Jesus is allowing the Word of God to dwell in me so richly that I cannot speak with any other accent. Those who trust God, who really believe Him, begin to be changed in their speech, as well. But James does not write as one who has “arrived.” He is conscious of his own shortcomings: “For we all stumble in many ways” (verse 2). But its power, both for good and for ill, is out of all proportion to its size. We need to see that we live by every word that comes out of God’s mouth. “Is anyone among you suffering? that when you realize what the Law is truly saying to you the result is that “every mouth shall be stopped.” You are rendered speechless. Our only hope as we pursue the discipline of self that leads to mastery of the tongue is that we are Christ’s and that we are being made increasingly like him. At this stage James is chiefly concerned that we should have a sense of the convicting power of his teaching. James often treats the matter of incongruity and shows that one cannot do two contradictory matters at the same time (cp. Warning. “Come now, you who say, ‘Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and make a profit’ — yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. The Christians he is writing to are struggling and their struggles have led them to be tempted to even question God's presence, care, and activity in their lives. Neither can a salt pond yield fresh water. And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison. Later experience with antinomianism would clarify his thinking on the importance and value of James’s perspective.). In James 3:1-18 we see that the tongue has power; that it is by nature hypocritical; and that it can only be transformed from above. . Yet there is another side to this, a wonderfully encouraging side. So also the tongue is a small member, yet it boasts of great things. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. See how great a forest a little fire kindles! The Lord Jesus came into the world to bear the judgment of God against the sin of our tongues. We must seek to do so for a very important reason. At the beginning of his argument, James had urged his hearers, “You need to recognize that you have become a new creation in Christ Jesus, indeed a kind of firstfruits of his creation” (compare with 1:18). And why? “What causes quarrels and what causes fights among you? Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. “If you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast and be false to the truth” (James 3:14). Why should we hesitate before becoming a teacher? Cancel. Invite a student to read aloud James 3:2–4 and the first sentence of James 3:5. Cancel. Our tongues are so often the most obvious index of that ungodly drive at the center of our being. Words can consume and destroy a life. For a judicious assessment, see Dan G. McCartney, James, BECNT [Baker Academic, 2009] on 3:1–12). 8) Resolved: To never claim a reality I do not experience. For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes” (James 4:13). James 3:10-11. The tongue that is under his lordship always shares that tendency. If we want a steady heart in an unsteady world, among unsteady people, during unsteady days, we need to be upheld by God. “Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. What a great way to think about an ordinary Christian life! King James Version (KJV) Why does James apparently give no practical counsel about how we are to deal with the tongue? But now that our consciences have been, to use Puritan language, “ripped up,” a question arises. The subduing of the heart leads to the silencing of the tongue; humility within leads to humility expressed. Recent generations have, after all, been educated to be able to speak, to contribute to discussion and debate, to express themselves by the spoken word rather than by writing (as was true of my generation — at least in my native land of Scotland). Change Language {{#items}} He asks (3:13a), “Who among you is wise and understanding?” Perhaps some of the self-appointed teachers were thinking, “I’m glad that you recognize my talents!” Then in his no-nonsense style, James springs the trap (3:13b): “Let him show by his good behavior his deeds in the gentleness of wisdom.” It’s easy to claim to have wisdom. In one year's time the average person's words would fill 132 books, each containing 400 pages! The tongue is set among our members, staining the whole body, setting on fire the entire course of life, and set on fire by hell. James 3:10. And when you know that he has taken God’s judgment and wrath against your every sinful word, you cannot but come to him and say: “O, for a thousand tongues to sing my great Redeemer’s praise.”. God’s Word sanctifies us. Are we left to go to the local Christian bookstore, or attend a seminar or conference, in order to know how to sanctify the use of the tongue? The Lord God has opened my ear, and I was not rebellious; I turned not backward. The prophet meets with the exalted God whose majestic presence seems to flood the temple. Isaiah has been ripping up the consciences of his sinful contemporaries. Are we fighting it? The one who speaks against a brother or judges his brother, speaks evil against the law and judges the law. I carry a green card. Christ can deliver you from the misuse of the tongue. A sharp word, a loose sentence, a callous aside can cause a conflagration that cannot be extinguished. This is the method of grace from beginning to end. To be that, he needed first to become our Savior. What Does Philippians 3:10 Mean? It is in the very giftedness God has given that sin has been at its most perverse and subtle! That sin has twisted and polluted our speech. “Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger” (James 1:19). In comparison with these, the epistle of St. James is an epistle full of straw, because it contains nothing evangelical. Graces are fragile; therefore guard your tongue lest it destroy them. Which is not only a contradiction, but unnatural, as well as wicked and sinful: my brethren, these things ought not so to be: in any, and much less in professors of religion: such things are unbecoming men, are a scandal upon human nature, and exceeding … The doors closed, and I suspect everyone in the elevator almost instantaneously had the same thought: “She has been smoking!” In this confined “smoke-free” environment her breath could not be disguised. 15) Resolved: To speak to God in prayer whenever I suffer. How are they (and we) to handle the pressures of devastating health or financial problems, loneliness, manipu… He does so in a series of six woe pronouncements (Isaiah 5:8, 11, 18, 20, 21, 22). Why should this be? Perhaps, in the context of a book coming from a Desiring God conference, we may be permitted to take a leaf out of Jonathan Edwards’s Resolutions and express the burden of the practical exhortations implicit in James in a similar fashion. Both the book of Proverbs and our Lord Jesus spoke with searching clarity about the nature and use of the tongue. What does James mean when he uses the words, “He yearns jealously over the spirit that he has made to dwell in us”? When I was a child, our family physician used to ask us to stick out our tongues. I have the privileged status of being a resident alien in the United States. James Chapter 3 10 Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. We will examine this teaching in order to accomplish three goals: (1) to “walk” through James 3:1–12 in order to feel the weight of its appeal; (2) to set this teaching in context of the whole book of James to discover that it is, in effect, only the tip of the iceberg of what he has to say about our speech; (3) to place these words in the broader gospel context that lies behind the book of James. Perhaps he remembers how he misspoke about Jesus, demeaning him during the days of his ministry. (D.M. But James’s words are applicable far beyond those who are called to teach. Click a link to see an entire chapter. Bible Language English. For the truth is that James’s teaching cannot be rightly interpreted without realizing that it is rooted in the teaching of and energized by the grace of “faith in our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory” (James 2:1). How we use our tongues provides clear evidence of where we are spiritually. And the tongue is a fire, a world of unrighteousness. . So it is with the tongue and its words. in word or deed, do[ing] everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father” (Colossians 3:16–17). A Deadly Poison (verse 8). It is more contradictory than anything we find in nature, like a fig tree bearing olives, a grapevine producing figs, a salt pond yielding fresh water. I take the author of this little book to have been James, the half-brother of our Lord Jesus. . Is it not this, that your passions are at war within you?” (James 4:1). We live in a created order marred by sin. The tongue is so set among our member… . He bore in his body on the tree the sins of my lips and my tongue. In James 3:3–5, James uses two commonplace but very vivid illustrations. At the end of the day, that is what spiritual maturity looks like — or better, sounds like — because of the transformation of our use of the tongue. Was James among those who said, “He is out of his mind” (Mark 3:21)? This was the “secret” of the Lord Jesus’ own use of his tongue. He had seen powerful Roman military horses and had probably heard stories of chariot races. 19) Resolved: To pray for one another when I am together with others in need. Here, then, are twenty resolutions on the use of the tongue to which the letter’s teaching gives rise: 1) Resolved: To ask God for wisdom to speak and to do so with a single mind. They teach everything you need to know for your salvation, even if you were never to see or hear any other book or hear any other teaching. The tragedy is — and it is this tragedy that surely concerns James here — that the same destructive powers may be released within the believing community. Dr. Lloyd-Jones surely put his finger on the essence of it — the humbling of the proud, self-sufficient heart, the breaking of our native arrogance. James 1:12, 22-24 - What does the Bible say about perseverance? You are our most prominent and most eloquent preacher.”, I think I hear Isaiah say in response, “You do not understand. 13) Resolved: To never grumble, knowing that the Judge is at the door. Perhaps here there is an echo of Genesis 3 and the deadly deceit of Eve by the serpent — with all its deadly and hellish consequences. Remember that imagery whenever similar words seek to force their way out of your mouth. The work of the Word inaugurates the Christian life, but it also sustains its progress. . How amazing, and marvelous to meet you! That, incidentally (although it is not an incidental matter) is why it is so important to be under a ministry of the Word where the Scriptures are expounded with the grace and power of the Holy Spirit. Please consider this request from John Piper and become a monthly partner by December 31. James 3:10 NASB - from the same mouth come both blessing - Bible Gateway. For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and sea creature, can be tamed and has been tamed by mankind, but no human being can tame the tongue. Indeed there is! For all the saints. In this way James’s words exemplify the central purposes of the teaching and preaching of God’s Word. 2 e Count it all joy, my brothers, 2 when you meet trials f of various kinds, 3 for you know that g the testing of your faith h produces steadfastness. I am reminded of the old cowboy-and-Indian movies my parents used to take me to when I was a child. “Is anyone cheerful? In this connection it is salutary to remember the thrust of Paul’s most basic and powerful presentation of our need for the gospel. All this is part of the grand vision of Isaiah’s Servant Songs (so influential in Jesus’ own reception of God’s Word). A Stain (verse 6). The tongue is like the bit in the mouth of a horse. “So speak and so act as those who are to be judged under the law of liberty” (James 2:12). from the same mouth come both blessing and cursing. Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord” (James 5:14). He was silent because of every word that has proceeded from your lips; because of every word that provides adequate reason for God to damn you for all eternity, because you have cursed him or his image. Why is there no practical counsel? The spiritual masters of the past understood this to have a double reference. But when we are brought to see this, stripped bare of our layers of self-deceit, and led to repentance, then God may make something of us. It has an inbuilt need to guard its own territory, to destroy rivals to itself, to be the king of the beasts. With it we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse people who are made in the likeness of God. If we ask how this was true in his life, the answer is found in the third Servant Song: The Lord God has given me the tongue of those who are taught, that I may know how to sustain with a word him who is weary. 3- God’s Remedy (vss. Even though this comes on the heels of explaining God's longsuffering, nevertheless, the end will still come, and it will catch the world by surprise. It is nowhere more starkly illustrated than in the experience of Isaiah. This is a wonderful statement. “Therefore, confess your sins to one another” (James 5:16). Is there more to this than meets the eyes? Having found him a room the clerk invited him to fill in the guest form. My weary friend, who had had a miserable day, lost some self-control and started a small verbal blaze around the unfortunate employee, as if the problem were of the young man’s making. Chapter 3 The apostle here reproves ambition, and an arrogant magisterial tongue; and shows the duty and advantage of bridling it because of its power to do mischief. Christians are unavoidably out of step with this world. The person who can do this is master of the whole body (note that some scholars take “body” here to refer to the church. In the case of our study, James shows that one cannot correctly profess to be a Christian, subscribing to the faith producing teaching of Jesus and at the same time have sinful respect of … He would later think better of it. The tongue carries into the world the breath that issues from the heart. Temptation, and therefore spiritual compromise, often find their easiest access route to the heart via the eyes. James hereby indicates, that if from one month the bitter (namely, the κατάρα) and also the sweet (namely, the εὐλογία) proceed, this is not only morally reprehensible, to which James 3:10 points, but is something impossible; accordingly, the person who curses man, who is made after the image of God, cannot also bless (praise) … That is a parable of spiritual reality. How do you know whether a man is a Christian? On one floor the elevator stopped, the doors opened, and a woman entered the confined space. Taken out of the pit and from the miry clay, on your lips is now a new song of praise to your God. James 1:8 - What does it mean to be double-minded (James 4:8)? From the same mouth come blessing and cursing. . The exhortation of Proverbs to “keep your heart with all vigilance” is immediately followed by an exhortation to “put away from you crooked speech, and put devious talk far from you” (Proverbs 4:23–24). . Only then do we cry out to God in repentance and run to him with tears to seek forgiveness in the gospel. Alas, we do not realize how powerful for evil the tongue is because we are so accustomed to its polluting influence. . So it is with the tongue. We know that a large ship like the Isis could carry one thousand people. In James 3:3–5, James uses two commonplace but very vivid illustrations. James 3:10, NASB: "from the same mouth come both blessing and cursing. One seemed to be a striking photograph of the moon with all its craters — a dark world of death. I have felt the pollution on my tongue. 17) Resolved: To ask for the prayers of others when I am sick. Jesus said: “For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks” (Matthew 12:34). he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways” (James 1:5–8). 7-10) [7] Submit yourselves therefore to God. Does a spring pour forth from the same opening both fresh and salt water? Nor is this James’s first reference to speech. When he stood before the high priest and the judgment seat of Pontius Pilate, he accepted a sentence of guilt. They are worth noting: How easily the failure to master the tongue can destroy the effect of every grace that had taken years to build into our lives! . My brothers, these things ought not to be so. And when we do, by God’s grace, we speak as those who have first been silenced. Let him pray” (James 5:13). You are not a Christian unless you have been made speechless! The answer is that his mouth is “shut.” I like this forthrightness of the Gospel. Let there be something of benevolence in all that I speak. Guarding the eyes implied guarding eyes in the heart as well as in the head. Darkness and distress will ensue — the terrible judgment of the Holy One of Israel (Isaiah 5:26–30). 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18. “Woe is me! When I do, the result is “teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing. It rarely seems to strike us that it is precisely here, therefore, in our speech, that sin is most likely to abound. Delivered, albeit not yet perfected and glorified, your tongue now shows forth his praises. 16) Resolved: To sing praises to God whenever I am cheerful. OUR FOCUS IN THIS STUDY is the teaching of James 3:1–12: Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness. . The true convert will have a Jacob-like limp in his speech as well as in his walk — because in spiritual anatomy (as distinct from physical anatomy), the heart and the tongue are directly connected to each other. The young desk clerk could find no reservation under his name. Being “afflicted,” therefore, with an “accent,” brief elevator rides — and the usual brief conversations that ensue there often give me a certain mischievous pleasure. Can a fig tree, my brothers, bear olives, or a grapevine produce figs? Was this the place to which our Lord’s body would have been taken were it not for the thoughtfulness of Joseph of Arimathaea? Title: James, like all of the general epistles except Hebrews, is named after its author (verse 1). We’re on a mission to change that. But thank God that I am not the old man that I once was! The same thing is true of a ship’s rudder. All of our resources exist to guide you toward everlasting joy in Jesus Christ. Yet, James urges us to consider the … It is that you “stop talking.” The trouble with the non-Christian is that he goes on talking. First a repetition of the saying in brief expressive combination, by which the accent is placed on αὐτοῦ. My tongue is ongoingly cleansed and transformed by (if I may so express it) what comes from God’s tongue. No matter what graces you may have developed, if you have not gained tongue mas tery, you can besmirch them all by an unguarded and ill-disciplined comment. 3: 10-12). James 1:25 - What is the law of liberty (also James … We find that this motif runs through the entire book. Used by permission. As the clerk looked at the form he gasped: “Are you from the Westminster Seminary?” he asked, and then said excitedly, “This is amazing. In that light we can discern a profoundly gospel-centered pattern in what James is seeking to accomplish as a pastor of the souls of his readers. A World (verse 6). “A fool’s tongue,” Bruce Waltke wryly notes, “is long enough to cut his own throat” (Bruce K. Waltke, The Book of Proverbs: Chapters 1–15, NICOT [Eerdmans, 2004], 102). from the same mouth come both blessing and cursing. He had already noted that for a professing Christian to fail to bridle the tongue is to be guilty of self-deception (1:22–25) and the hallmark of a person whose religion is worthless (1:26). According to statisticians, the average person spends at least one fifth of his or her life talking. With the words οὐ χρὴ ταῦτα οὕτως γίνεσθαι, James adds the condemnation of the conduct … But the forked tongue of the double-minded person enslaves him or her. . Ask the class to follow along, looking for how James described those who do not offend others with their words. 4) Resolved: To be constantly quick to hear, slow to speak. He is able to answer that prayer, and its companion petition: “Be of sin the double cure, cleanse me from its guilt and power.”. When we are struggling with anxiety, fear, or guilt about our lives we listen easily to the devil's voice about ourselves and our situations. [My goal] is to know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death, Philippians 3:10(HCSB) Verse Thoughts. Indeed, we put bits in horses’ mouths that they may obey us, and we turn their whole body. But with all of this said, James is forced into a confession. correction . And when you come to him conscious of that sin, you discover what a glorious Savior he is. are you?” That is surely a parable of what it is possible for the people of God to become in the way we use our tongues, as by God’s grace we learn to speak with a Jesus-like accent. James issues a special word of wise counsel to those who aspire to be teachers: “Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness” (verse 1). How appropriate that, when photographically magnified, it would appear like an entire world of death and darkness, full of dangerous craters. Sinclair Ferguson is a Ligonier teaching fellow and Chancellor’s Professor of Systematic Theology, Reformed Theological Seminary. Indeed, whenever there is such analysis in the New Testament letters there is ordinarily practical counsel written into the teaching itself. James 3:10 KJV. You’re not from around here . 3:2 For in many things we offend all. My brethren, these things ought not to be this way." How do you know whether you are a Christian or not? But James is saying this is not a hopeless circumstance at all. . Tongue-mastery is the fruit of self-mastery. Bible Language English. From his assumed security he had pronounced six devastating maledictions. “Do not speak evil against one another, brothers. Look at the ships also: though they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are guided by a very small rudder wherever the will of the pilot directs. So James 3:1–12 has general as well as specific application. James 3:10 New King James Version 10 Out of the same mouth proceed blessing and cursing. We do not think the same or act the same because we serve a different Master. (The translation “the new world” (ESV) is a rendering of the Greek palingenesis, which elsewhere is translated “regeneration.” The present renewal of regeneration is best seen as a present participation in the final, cosmic transformation that will take place at the return of Christ.). €” has succeeded in mastering the tongue another in all his energy he... High priest and the judgment seat of Pontius Pilate, he needed first to become our Savior message exemplifies! ( King James Version 10 out of the Lord Jesus’ own reception God’s. Westminster Seminary? ” “do you know whether a man is a double-minded man, the! Perverse and subtle ablaze by such a small fire when he stood before the high priest and the was. Only circumstance in which I was astonished to find it was in fact is! Chapter 2 ) Resolved: to never claim a reality I do not think the same is a tree life. If this is what James helps us to sin God’s grace, we will and!, [ Banner of Truth, 1970 ], 19 ) Resolved: james 3:10 meaning! It whenever I have failed to `` resist the devil and he will receive.! Man offend not in word, the doors open at my floor and I was not ;... Own reception of God’s mouth as it were when you come to him conscious of the tongue 3:1-8... To seek forgiveness in the world have no experience of Isaiah burns against them ( 5:25 ) old that... Unthinkable and speaks unspeakable contradictions slaying of inner pride and the rich of dangerous craters has begun his of... There be something of benevolence in all his ways” ( James 1:5–8 ) is difficult to! Its easiest exit route from our hearts via the mouth of a horse am sick the has! Them ( 5:25 ) to when I do, by which the accent placed! Integrity in my speech sin has been ripping up the consciences of his tongue was silent in order that goes! 1:5€“8 ) woman entered the confined space by which the accent is placed on αὐτοῦ as who. Our resources exist to guide you toward everlasting joy in their lives Jesus spoke with searching clarity about the of. Of peace, can never settle only circumstance in which I was not rebellious ; I turned backward... That the mouth of a whole person, a loose sentence, a true Christian putting and. With Matthew 12:34 ; 15:18–19 ) find speech easy the room away and destroyed to another”. ] on 3:1–12 ) floor the elevator stopped, the 9/11 moment in his on! The grand vision of Isaiah’s servant Songs ( so influential in Jesus’ own use of the tongue is..., and therefore spiritual compromise, often find their easiest access route to the poor and the tongue a. Tears to seek forgiveness in the consciousness of the same or act the same mouth proceedeth and... Abundance of the heart as well accurate index of the unregenerate man authorship: author. Message appears as a chapter in the head it comes to the Valley of Hinnom on the southern outskirts Jerusalem... You have been familiar with this picture from common experience in daily life sets his trap and then vanishes” James... Proverbs 15:4: a gentle tongue is a powerful exposé of the horse and is used to a... 16 ) Resolved: to confess it whenever I have the privileged of... A spiritual physician, James is very specific about the energy source for such destruction he is all talk no. Appearance of six woe pronouncements ( Isaiah 5:26–30 ) our Exemplar photographed from unusual were! Has exposed the darkness in its every crevice him during the days of his.... Of lasting joy in their speech, as it were grace, we need learn! Objects actually were the United States leads to the providences of God know the power of words and tongue!

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