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Taming the Tongue

By Pastor John Bingham

James 3:5-6, “Even so the tongue is a little member, and boasteth great things. Behold, how great a matter a little fire kindleth! 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.”

Some historians have said that civilization began when man discovered fire. When it is under control, it warms our bodies, it cooks our food, and it generates power to turn on lights and enable our modern world. It is also dangerous. Out of control fire has long been feared by men. It has the ability to destroy homes, livelihood and even life itself.

“A massive fire engulfed 400-year-old Wengding Wa Village in southwest China's Yunnan Province on February 14, 2021. The village, known as "the last tribe of China" and home to China's Wa ethnic group, preserved a traditional style of architecture featuring all-wood structures and thatched roofs, making it especially susceptible to fire.”

Even more dreadful than fires like these that destroy an entire village are those fires that are started by a tongue that has yet been tamed by the Holy Spirit. When the tongue is tamed and controlled by the Holy Spirit, it is a blessing to those around it. But out of control words can bring much destruction in the life. Proverbs 26:20 states, “Where no wood is, there the fire goeth out: so where there is no talebearer, the strife ceaseth.” Well we remember the Apostle Peter, how that his uncontrolled tongue was a source of blunder for him. Yet, when it came under the control of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost, it became a source of life! When we give the Lord complete control over the words of our mouth, then He is able to tame the tongue and make it a source of life for all.

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