Controlling the Tongue

1690 words 7 pages
Survey of the New Testament
Summer Semester 2010
Bible Summary Paper
James 3:1-12
Controlling the Tongue

James 3:1-12 Between 40 and 49 A.D. Jesus’ brother James wrote the book of James which is believed to be one of the first if not the very first book in the New Testament to be written. James wrote the book to address the twelve scattered Jewish tribes and “to encourage them to continue to grow in the new Christian faith (got”. There is a particular form or genre to this book it is called “encyclical or circular letter” (Just). The book of James is written with a very specific theme in mind and that is “not merely faith and works, but faith that works” (Nelson, p.1936). Having faith in God is
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In today’s world it would be impossible for a person to live an everyday life and never stumble. “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 very small helm, whithersoever the governor listeth” (James 3:3-4) In these two verses James explains how large and powerful objects can be steered using very small objects in comparison to what they are controlling. It is also very appropriate that he used to bit in the horses mouth as an example since this passage is about controlling the tongue. In verse five we see his first reference to the tongue. “Even so the tongue is a little member, and boasteth great things. Behold, how great a little fire kindleth!” (James 3:5) He is comparing the tongue to the rudder for use in controlling the body, and then to a spark of fire that is capable of starting a large fire that could destroy a forest. “And the tongue is a fire, a word of iniguity: so 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” (James 3:6) This is a powerful statement that James uses to show his audience that the tongue is a very powerful force. Although the tongue is a very small member of our body it


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