The General Epistle of James 3

October 21, 2022

My brethren, be not many masters, knowing that we shall receive the greater condemnation.

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.

3 Behold, we put bits in the horses’ mouths, that they may obey us; and we turn about their whole body.

4 Behold also the ships, which though they be so great, and are driven of fierce winds, yet are they turned about with a very small helm, whithersoever the governor listeth.

5 Even so the tongue is a little member, and boasteth great things. Behold, how great a matter a little fire kindleth!

6 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.

7 For every kind of beasts, and of birds, and of serpents, and of things in the sea, is tamed, and hath been tamed of mankind:

8 But the tongue can no man tame; it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison.

9 Therewith bless we God, even the Father; and therewith curse we men, which are made after the similitude of God.

10 Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be.

11 Doth a fountain send forth at the same place sweet water and bitter?

12 Can the fig tree, my brethren, bear olive berries? either a vine, figs? so can no fountain both yield salt water and fresh.

13 Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? let him shew out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom.

14 But if ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth.

15 This wisdom descendeth not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish.

16 For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work.

17 But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy.

18 And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace.

Mind your mouth. It’s as simple as that. The hard part, of course, is thinking before speaking; that can be a real trick sometimes. The worst case I have ever seen personally was one afternoon at the supermaket – this is several years ago but it has stuck with me all this time.

Walking through the various aisles, I passed a young woman with three children in her cart and one walking along side her. All her little flowers were different colors. I passed her several times, as one often does when shopping, and I noticed how well behaved the children were – even in the cereal and candy aisles!

I headed toward the check out and the young woman was probably two people ahead of me in the line. I’m standing in the line and I hear a woman ask the mother if all the children were hers. The hair on the back of my neck went up … human radar showed storms ahead.

The young woman smiled and said yes. The next statement from the woman who addressed her made me leave the line and find another. This cruel, stupid woman asked the mom – “Did you marry any of the fathers?”

I didn’t hear the young woman’s answer as I had moved to a different check out lane. I’m glad I didn’t hear her answer – it was certainly not my business and even less so that stupid, stupid woman. That tongue! That tongue with no brain running it.

Mind your tongue. And engage your brain before you use it.


4 thoughts on “The General Epistle of James 3”

  1. I have lost count of the number of occasions I have unwittingly or unthinkingly opened my mouth and put my size nines in it. I hope I am more circumspect in my old age.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I guess some people never learn to filter their thoughts or just feel entirely justified in making a snap judgement about someone without knowing any of the background story.

        Liked by 1 person

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