Taming The Tongue | TBN

Taming The Tongue

Watch Taming The Tongue
October 11, 2020
27:29

Dr. Jack Graham's mission is to glorify God by introducing Jesus Christ to as Lord to all people.

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Taming The Tongue

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  • [Music]
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  • Your goal is spiritual maturity,that's what the Book
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  • of James is about, growing inyour faith and becoming more
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  • mature in Christ. That's yourgoal. A true mark of Christian
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  • maturity, life maturity, is howyou use your mouth, how you
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  • manage your mouth, how you useyour tongue. Let's begin reading
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  • in chapter 3 verse 1. "Not manyof you should become teachers,
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  • my brothers, for you know thatwe who teach will be judged with
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  • greater strictness." Alwaysgives me pause when I read that
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  • because I know I'm highlyaccountable to God for what I
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  • say and what I do. Verse 2 says"For we all stumble in many
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  • ways. And if anyone does notstumble in what he says, he is a
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  • perfect man", meaning a matureman, "also able to bridle his
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  • whole body. If we put bits intothe mouths of horses so that
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  • they obey us, we guide theirwhole bodies as well. Look at
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  • the ships also, though they areso large and are driven by
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  • strong winds, they are guided bya very small rudder wherever the
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  • will of the pilot directs. Soalso is the tongue a small
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  • member, yet it boasts of greatthings. How great a forest is
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  • set ablaze by such a small fire!And the tongue is a fire, a
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  • world of unrighteousness. Thetongue is set among our members,
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  • staining the whole body, settingon fire the entire", watch these
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  • words, "course of life", will ofexistence literally, "and set on
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  • fire by hell." "For every kindof beast and bird, of reptile
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  • and sea creature, can be tamedand has been tamed by mankind,
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  • but no human being can tame thetongue. It is a restless evil,
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  • full of deadly poison. With itwe bless our Lord and Father,
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  • and with it we curse people whoare made in the likeness of God.
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  • From the same mouth comeblessing and cursing. My
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  • brothers, these things ought notto be so. Does a spring pour
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  • forth from the same opening bothfresh and salt water? Can a fig
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  • tree, my brothers, bear olives,or a grapevine produce figs?
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  • Neither can a salt pond yieldfresh water." James is a master
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  • illustrator. In this passage onthe tongue he gives us some
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  • metaphors regarding our mouths.There are 6 of them, he talks
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  • about the bit in the mouth of ahorse, he talks about the rudder
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  • on a ship, he talks about afire, a spark that can set
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  • ablaze, he talks about a beast,that the tongue is like a beast
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  • or like a monster in the mouth.It's like poison, it can produce
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  • poison. He said it's like afountain and it is like a fig
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  • tree. With all of thesellustrative comments, very
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  • practical, James ever practicaltells us about the tongue and
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  • what it can do and how it setsthe course and even the
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  • character and the destiny of ourlives. A couple of things, one
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  • our words give us direction,that's the first thing. Our
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  • words, what we say give usdirection in life. That's why he
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  • uses the illustration about thehorse and the bridle. It's
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  • amazing you could take a 1.200pound animal and put a 90 pound
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  • child on it but with reins and abit a small child can control
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  • that great horse. Same is trueof the rudder on a ship, no
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  • matter how big the ship it ismoved by the pilot at the
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  • direction of the rudder. He'ssaying here that our tongue
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  • controls the direction of ourlives. Change the way you speak,
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  • change what you say and how youtalk and you can change the
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  • direction of your life. It'strue. I'm going to say it
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  • again, change the way you speak,how you use your tongue and it
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  • will change the course, thedirection of your life. Proverbs
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  • tells us in proverbs 8:21 thatlife and death are in the power
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  • of the tongue. A very powerfulthing is the tongue. If you
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  • speak negatively, if you'reconstantly reflecting negativity
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  • in what you then ultimately youwill live a negative life. It's
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  • a simple principle really. Howyou talk to God, how you talk to
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  • yourself, how you talk to othersdramatically influences the
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  • course of your life. If you arefilled with words that are
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  • worthless or careless or emptyor even profane, then ultimately
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  • that's the way your life's goingto turn out. Let me share a
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  • couple of ideas. For examples,words are powerful, they can
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  • change your life. You go to analtar and you say "I do", and I
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  • promise you that changes yourlife. If someone stands before a
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  • judge and the judge says "You'renot guilty" that changes
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  • everything. If you're before adoctor and you hear your doctor
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  • say "You're cancer free" thosewords are life changing. If say
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  • no to a temptation, when you'reunder attack and you can feel
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  • the breath of Satan on your neckand you say no in the power of
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  • God's spirit to temptation, thatcan change the course or the
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  • direction of your life. When yousay "Yes I will follow Jesus
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  • Christ" that not only changesyour direction, it changes the
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  • destiny, your eternal future.Your words matter. Words can
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  • change history and have. Ifwords are demonized out of the
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  • mouth of a Hitler then war anddisaster comes, but words that
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  • come out of the mouth of a greatevangelist like Billy Graham can
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  • change history as well. Wordsare powerful. If you speak words
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  • of faith then your life isfilled with faith. If you speak
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  • God's word, God's promises,God's will upon your life, it
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  • changes everything for the good,and the reverse is true.
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  • Colossians 3 verse 17 is ascripture you should note. It
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  • says "For whatever you do, inword and deed, do everything in
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  • the name of the Lord JesusChrist, with gratitude in your
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  • heart, giving thanks to God theFather through him." When we put
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  • Christ first in our lives, weput him first into what we do
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  • and what we say. We are able,according to this, we shouldn't
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  • speak or say anything or writeanything or post anything or
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  • send anything, which we can notsign the name of the Lord Jesus.
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  • If you cannot glorify God andmagnify God with your words then
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  • don't say them. You need to askin every situation if you post
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  • it, if you send it, if you sayit, social media is a whole new
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  • world of being able to expressourselves but as Christians and
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  • followers of the Lord JesusChrist, I shall always ask
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  • myself, "Does this representJesus Christ and reflect His
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  • love in my life?" GrowingChristians learn how to control
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  • their tongues under the guidanceof the holy spirit because it
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  • sets the course of our lives.Secondly our words can bring
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  • destruction, not only they bringdirection but our words can
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  • bring destruction. Jamesillustrates with a spark and a
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  • fire. Just a small spark, we'veall had experiences with matches
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  • and fire. Just a small spark candestroy a house or destroy an
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  • entire forest. James says thetongue, (I noted and stopped
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  • when I read it), setson fire the course of nature,
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  • the very wheel of existence. Inother words all of life is
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  • affected by our words, and allthe people in our lives. James
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  • says here that the tongue can beset on fire of hell. The word is
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  • [Gahanna 00:18:56]. Gahanna wasthe garbage dump outside of
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  • Jerusalem, burning constantly,smelling sulfuric. It was
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  • disgusting. Jesus described hellas the eternal garbage dump
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  • burning with fire. It's therubbish of the universe. He said
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  • the tongue can reflect garbage,regurgitate filth. James tells
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  • us an evil tongue defiles anddestroys the entire body. A
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  • tongue set on fire of hell. Youever heard that in conversation?
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  • Somebody says to somebody else"Okay, give them hell." Give
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  • them hell, it's what he'stalking about here. The tongue
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  • can start a hell fire that cannever be put out in a person's
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  • life. When you think about thewords we use on the negative
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  • side, let's start there. We'llflip it in just a second. Here
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  • are the kinds of words that canstart a fire that you can't
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  • control. Let's start withcareless words. You ever been
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  • run over by a hit and run mouth?Careless words, meaningless
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  • words, vain words. Some peoplethey don't use vile words, they
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  • just use vain words. Jesus said"We'll give it a count at the
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  • judgment seat of Christ forevery vain, idle word that we
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  • speak. Scary. Careless wordscan destroy lives in a matter of
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  • minutes. Sticks and stones maybreak my bones but words will
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  • never hurt me. Not true. Wordscan hurt and they can hurt a
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  • lot. A sports writer for theAtlanta Constitution several
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  • years ago wrote these wordsabout the tongue. He said "I am
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  • more deadly than the screamingshell from the howitzer. I win
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  • without killing, I tear downhomes and break hearts and wreck
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  • lives. I travel on the wings ofthe wind. No innocence is strong
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  • enough to intimidate me, nopurity pure enough to daunt me.
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  • I have no regard for truth, norespect for justice, no mercy
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  • for the defenseless. My victimsare as numerous as the sands of
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  • the sea and often as innocent. Inever forget and seldom forgive.
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  • My name is gossip." Just idlewords that can become very
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  • hurtful words. I wonder howmany careless, thoughtless words
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  • have ruined relationships andfractured families and torn
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  • churches apart and destroyedreputations. Careless words,
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  • words without thinking. Weshould always ask the Holy
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  • Spirit to help us think beforewe speak, that we would think
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  • before we sinned. Then there arecontemptuous words. Angry,
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  • hostile words. Someone said"Make your words sweet because
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  • some day you may have to eatthem." I wonder how many wives
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  • have been beaten down by thewords, the verbal abuse of an
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  • angry husband. How many childrenhave been wounded for life by
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  • the hostile words, the angrywords of parents who don't pay
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  • attention. They're like weapons,they can break down spirits.
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  • Criticism and destructivelanguage, words that wound. You
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  • have to live with theconsequences of what you say and
  • 00:14:04.622 --> 00:14:08.126
  • often people around you livewith the consequences of what we
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  • say. Contemptuous words,hateful, angry. Censorious
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  • that's the next kindof words, censorious words.
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  • Negative, critical, caustic,slanderous, backstabbing,
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  • backbiting. James who is ourbrother here says "Brothers and
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  • sisters, this should not be trueabout us." If we open our mouths
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  • and say ah, and the greatphysician looks down, what does
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  • he see? What's coming out of ourhearts? I say, "Well I don't
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  • gossip but people tell mestuff." Don't let somebody use
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  • your ears for garbage cans.Don't participate in gossip or
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  • slander, in censorious words.And then carnal words, fleshly
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  • words, filthy words, profanewords. He speaks of both
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  • blessing and cursing in thispassage. Blaspheming God and
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  • blaspheming others. Filthywords, potty mouth, porno words,
  • 00:15:14.125 --> 00:15:20.531
  • immoral words that come out ofthe heart. Did you know that all
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  • of the 10 commandments can bebroken by our words, not just
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  • our deeds? That's why we canpretty much know that we've
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  • broken all the commandments, atleast by our words if not our
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  • deeds. We could dishonor by ourwords. We can exhibit false
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  • worship and idle worship withour words. We can offer
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  • murderous accusations andassassinations with our words.
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  • We can tell lies and bear falsewitness with our words. We can
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  • covet with our words. We canexpress vile and lustfull
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  • thoughts, adulterous thoughtswith our words. We can steal a
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  • person's reputation with ourwords. Words matter. It's true
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  • when James says this can set offa course of events, a fire in
  • 00:16:11.149 --> 00:16:15.787
  • your life that can destroyeverything. He talks then about
  • 00:16:15.820 --> 00:16:20.391
  • this monster, a beast. He said"We can tame the animals." James
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  • takes us on a trip to the zoo,he said "You can tame animals
  • 00:16:27.231 --> 00:16:31.402
  • but this beast uncontrolled inyour mouth, this monster in your
  • 00:16:31.436 --> 00:16:34.639
  • mouth is restless and ispowerful and is poisonous. A few
  • 00:16:34.672 --> 00:16:38.876
  • drops can kill." But that bringsme to the final word here, which
  • 00:16:38.910 --> 00:16:42.680
  • says "Our words then display ourcharacter." That's what he's
  • 00:16:42.713 --> 00:16:47.151
  • talking when he says out of oneside of our mouth comes blessing
  • 00:16:47.185 --> 00:16:50.988
  • and the other side of our mouthcomes blaspheming or cursing.
  • 00:16:51.022 --> 00:16:55.827
  • Blessing and cursing. Someonesaid that the profanity of the
  • 00:16:55.860 --> 00:17:00.364
  • church is greater than theprofanity of the streets. What
  • 00:17:00.398 --> 00:17:03.167
  • that means is we come to church,"Hey brother how are you doing?
  • 00:17:03.201 --> 00:17:07.538
  • Let's praise God together" andthen in the parking lot same guy
  • 00:17:07.572 --> 00:17:10.908
  • cuts you off, "You jerk! What'swrong with you?" Or we go home
  • 00:17:10.942 --> 00:17:17.615
  • and before we even get homewe're in on a rancorous argument
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  • with someone in the family. Ithappens all the time because our
  • 00:17:21.352 --> 00:17:24.989
  • tongues cause us a great deal oftrouble. One minute we're
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  • praising God, the next minutewe're profaning people that God
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  • made. That's what he's sayinghere. Great people in the Bible
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  • had trouble with their tongues.Job who overcame such disaster
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  • in his life said "I am vile. Ilay a hand over my mouth." Like
  • 00:17:44.942 --> 00:17:52.049
  • that. Isaiah, the greatprophet, when he saw the Lord
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  • high and lifted up, he said "Iam a man of unclean lips amidst
  • 00:17:56.587 --> 00:18:02.660
  • a generation of people ofunclean lips." That's
  • 00:18:02.693 --> 00:18:07.431
  • descriptive of our generation.There's just so much filth in
  • 00:18:07.465 --> 00:18:13.471
  • the air. There's just so muchvileness in vocabularies. Both
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  • men and women are spewing outthis filth, words. Sending out
  • 00:18:26.217 --> 00:18:34.292
  • poisonous words. Moses was angryone day, he ended up out of the
  • 00:18:34.325 --> 00:18:44.902
  • promised land because of it. Itsays in Psalm 106 verse 33 that
  • 00:18:44.936 --> 00:18:49.440
  • because he was angry he said "Ispoke rashly with my lips". How
  • 00:18:49.473 --> 00:18:54.845
  • many times have we spokenrashly, we wish we could get it
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  • back but of course it's likeslitting open a feather pillow
  • 00:18:58.749 --> 00:19:02.253
  • and the wind blowing thefeathers everywhere. You could
  • 00:19:02.286 --> 00:19:04.422
  • never get some of that stuffback in the pillow. Peter
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  • sinned against Christ in denyingChrist, with the same mouth he
  • 00:19:07.925 --> 00:19:11.996
  • confessed him and said "I willnever deny you." And yet when he
  • 00:19:12.029 --> 00:19:15.399
  • was warming his hands by thefires of the Romans he ended up
  • 00:19:15.433 --> 00:19:18.169
  • running away, denying Christ.It's disturbing isn't it? When I
  • 00:19:18.202 --> 00:19:25.209
  • look at my own life and I see inmy words both blessing and
  • 00:19:25.243 --> 00:19:30.114
  • cursing, it's disturbing. Jamesuses these words, these
  • 00:19:30.147 --> 00:19:36.988
  • illustrations of a fountain.Whether it's sweet water or salt
  • 00:19:37.021 --> 00:19:39.857
  • water, or whether it's a figtree, these illustrations of
  • 00:19:39.890 --> 00:19:43.461
  • nature, by saying what is theroot will bear the same fruit.
  • 00:19:43.494 --> 00:19:47.565
  • The problem is with the heart.The person with a harsh tongue
  • 00:19:47.598 --> 00:19:58.542
  • has an angry heart. The personwith a negative tongue has an
  • 00:19:58.576 --> 00:20:03.447
  • anxious heart. The person withan overactive tongue has an
  • 00:20:03.481 --> 00:20:07.084
  • unsettled heart. The person witha filthy tongue has a impure
  • 00:20:07.118 --> 00:20:13.691
  • heart. A person with a criticalcensorious tongue has a bitter
  • 00:20:13.724 --> 00:20:17.295
  • heart. And so on. Let's flipthat on the other side. A person
  • 00:20:17.328 --> 00:20:22.700
  • with compassionate words has aloving heart. A person with an
  • 00:20:22.733 --> 00:20:29.640
  • encouraging tongue has a happyheart. A person with a truthful
  • 00:20:29.674 --> 00:20:35.780
  • tongue has an honest heart. Ourwords come from our hearts and
  • 00:20:35.813 --> 00:20:46.457
  • the only way to tame the tongueis first of all to get a new
  • 00:20:46.490 --> 00:20:48.859
  • heart. The Bible talks aboutgetting a brand new heart
  • 00:20:48.893 --> 00:20:54.465
  • because the old heart isdeceitful and desperately
  • 00:20:54.498 --> 00:20:57.134
  • wicked. The only way totransform our tongues is not
  • 00:20:57.168 --> 00:21:01.305
  • reformation or even education.You can improve your vocabulary
  • 00:21:01.339 --> 00:21:07.011
  • with education, you can improvemaybe your attitude with
  • 00:21:07.044 --> 00:21:10.881
  • reformation, but you can onlychange your tongue and your
  • 00:21:10.915 --> 00:21:14.452
  • actions and your words and yourdeeds with transformation. We
  • 00:21:14.485 --> 00:21:18.255
  • need a new life. This is howJesus Christ changes our hearts
  • 00:21:18.289 --> 00:21:24.128
  • and changes our lives. I cantell you I've seen it over the
  • 00:21:24.161 --> 00:21:27.832
  • years many, many times. How aman or a woman whose tongue was
  • 00:21:27.865 --> 00:21:34.071
  • off the charts but thentransformed by the power of
  • 00:21:34.105 --> 00:21:39.577
  • Jesus Christ. Then asked theHoly Spirit to control your
  • 00:21:39.610 --> 00:21:46.450
  • tongue, give God control of yourtongue. James says we can't do
  • 00:21:46.484 --> 00:21:51.055
  • this on our own, we need thesupernatural power of God. The
  • 00:21:51.088 --> 00:21:55.359
  • Psalm has said it this way inPsalm 141 verse 3 "Set a guard
  • 00:21:55.393 --> 00:21:59.930
  • over my mouth, O Lord, keepwatch over the door of my lips!"
  • 00:21:59.964 --> 00:22:05.903
  • Set a guard over my mouth, Lordwatch my mouth. Or pray the
  • 00:22:05.936 --> 00:22:11.208
  • prayer in psalmist in Psalm 19verse 14, "Let the words of my
  • 00:22:11.242 --> 00:22:15.012
  • mouth and the meditations of myheart be acceptable in your
  • 00:22:15.045 --> 00:22:20.151
  • sight O Lord, my strength and myredeemer." God watches our words
  • 00:22:20.184 --> 00:22:31.028
  • and looks into our heart. Andthen use your tongue to the
  • 00:22:31.061 --> 00:22:38.736
  • glory of God. Use your tonguefor God's glory. The best way I
  • 00:22:38.769 --> 00:22:43.007
  • know how to transform the tongueby the power of Christ is to use
  • 00:22:43.040 --> 00:22:47.778
  • my tongue and my words tomagnify Christ in praise and in
  • 00:22:47.812 --> 00:22:53.818
  • worship. The Psalmist said"Thy loving kindness is better
  • 00:22:53.851 --> 00:22:58.689
  • than life. My lips will praiseyou. O magnify the Lord with me.
  • 00:22:58.722 --> 00:23:04.695
  • I will bless the Lord at alltime, his praise will
  • 00:23:04.728 --> 00:23:10.334
  • continually be in my mouth." Thescripture says that we're to
  • 00:23:10.367 --> 00:23:14.171
  • bring to God the sacrifice ofpraise, the fruit of our lips. I
  • 00:23:14.205 --> 00:23:21.078
  • don't know why we seem to be soreluctant to use our words to
  • 00:23:21.111 --> 00:23:25.716
  • worship. What we say or what wesing. Praise God with your
  • 00:23:25.749 --> 00:23:34.692
  • words, with your worship to him.Remember worship flows out of
  • 00:23:34.725 --> 00:23:39.630
  • the heart and it's possible thatyou don't worship with your lips
  • 00:23:39.663 --> 00:23:45.002
  • because you don't have it inyour heart to do it. I'm not
  • 00:23:45.035 --> 00:23:49.907
  • saying tip the cup, but if itspills over shout to the Lord.
  • 00:23:49.940 --> 00:23:56.480
  • Praise God from whom allblessings flow. "O For a
  • 00:23:56.514 --> 00:24:00.851
  • thousand tongues to sing mygreat Redeemer's praise!" I wish
  • 00:24:00.885 --> 00:24:05.656
  • God would give me a thousandtongues and a thousand lifetimes
  • 00:24:05.689 --> 00:24:11.228
  • to speak of the wonders of hislove and the power of his grace
  • 00:24:11.262 --> 00:24:16.033
  • in our lives. That's how we'reto use our tongues. Our words is
  • 00:24:16.066 --> 00:24:21.972
  • our witness. Our tongue is atestimony. How are you doing?
  • 00:24:22.006 --> 00:24:30.414
  • How's the testimony of yourwords? The testimony of your
  • 00:24:30.447 --> 00:24:33.050
  • worship? How's your life going?Is it negative and downhill
  • 00:24:33.083 --> 00:24:38.522
  • going in the wrong direction andyour words are destructive, self
  • 00:24:38.556 --> 00:24:44.662
  • destructive? Or are your wordspowerful and persuasive. Joshua
  • 00:24:44.695 --> 00:24:50.134
  • 1:8 says that we are to keepGod's word in our mouths at all
  • 00:24:50.167 --> 00:24:55.039
  • times. Speak the word of Godover your life. Speak God's
  • 00:24:55.072 --> 00:25:00.277
  • promises over your situation.Express God's praise, no matter
  • 00:25:00.311 --> 00:25:07.351
  • what. Your words, your tonguewill be transformed through the
  • 00:25:07.384 --> 00:25:12.556
  • glory of Jesus Christ. The mostimportant thing you could say
  • 00:25:12.590 --> 00:25:17.261
  • with your tongue are four words.If I only had four words to say
  • 00:25:17.294 --> 00:25:27.104
  • to the world, these would be myfour words, "Jesus Christ is
  • 00:25:27.137 --> 00:25:33.477
  • Lord."
  • 00:25:33.510 --> 00:25:35.346
  • [Music]
  • 00:25:35.379 --> 00:25:42.286
  • The book of James was written along time ago, 2000 years ago,
  • 00:25:42.319 --> 00:25:45.356
  • to Christians who were dealingwith serious, significant
  • 00:25:45.389 --> 00:25:49.026
  • problems just as we face today.And the strong, direct words of
  • 00:25:49.059 --> 00:25:54.098
  • James teach all believers how totruly live our faith in times of
  • 00:25:54.131 --> 00:25:58.836
  • testing, in tough times. TheChristian life isn't just about
  • 00:25:58.869 --> 00:26:02.840
  • words but works as well. It'sabout our conversations, our
  • 00:26:02.873 --> 00:26:07.311
  • conduct, not simply our creedsbut our deeds. VISIBLE FAITH is
  • 00:26:07.344 --> 00:26:12.483
  • about the faith that saves andworks. VISIBLE FAITH is our gift
  • 00:26:12.516 --> 00:26:17.254
  • to say thank you for yourdonation to help PowerPoint
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  • generous support and for helpingus broadcast the transforming
  • 00:26:30.167 --> 00:26:34.238
  • message of the gospel 'till thewhole world hears.
  • 00:26:34.271 --> 00:26:39.009
  • Let's all ask ourselves today,
  • 00:26:39.043 --> 00:26:40.678
  • ask yourself today what are mywords saying about me? Are my
  • 00:26:40.711 --> 00:26:46.083
  • words a good testimony of JesusChrist, is my language, the
  • 00:26:46.116 --> 00:26:50.688
  • things that I say, what I speak,does it give evidence that my
  • 00:26:50.721 --> 00:26:54.625
  • heart belongs to Jesus. You needto ask in every situation
  • 00:26:54.658 --> 00:26:58.862
  • whether you post it or text itor tweet it or just say it the
  • 00:26:58.896 --> 00:27:03.133
  • old fashioned way... does thisrepresent Jesus Christ and
  • 00:27:03.167 --> 00:27:07.404
  • reflect his love in my life. Iwant to thank you for your
  • 00:27:07.438 --> 00:27:11.775
  • support of PowerPoint. We are sograteful that you have chosen to
  • 00:27:11.809 --> 00:27:16.780
  • join us each week, toparticipate in this ministry and
  • 00:27:16.814 --> 00:27:20.217
  • to partner with us financiallyso that we can continue to teach
  • 00:27:20.250 --> 00:27:24.088
  • God's word and preach Jesus.
  • 00:27:24.121 --> 00:27:29.999