Scripture – James 3:9-10
With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in God’s likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers, this should not be.
James is likening our tongues to a vessel we use for worshipping God which we then use for ungodly activities. He is trying to explain not only the power of the tongue but recalibrate our understanding of what it is designed for.
I think of it like this: imagine I had a solid silver spoon that was reserved for special guests and only ever used for the finest of meals. Then, between appetizers and the entrees of one of these special occasions, I take the silver spoon and take it outside to scoop the neighbor’s dog poop from the lawn. Then I wash it off and bring it back to the table to spoon out the horseradish to go with the boeuf bourgignon.
Can’t imagine it, right?
It’s the same with the tongue, James says. Thanking, praising and worshipping God with it, just to spit curses at people, mutter obscenities, tell lies, grumble and complain.
This really helps me get a practical understanding of the use of my tongue, my words. I have read this passage many times before, but never have I really understood it like I do today. I do not want to use my #1 worshipping utensil for purposes that are ungodly and unfitting for a follower of Jesus. I need to keep this metaphor at the forefront of my mind at all times because I need to retrain my brain to really understand this scripture.
Father, I do not want to worship you and curse men with my tongue. I only want to worship you and bless, encourage, comfort, exhort and strengthen others with it. I place it under your authority. Use my tongue as you use yours. I need your constant help. Thank you for discipling me. You are too good to me. I love you, in the name of Jesus, amen.