Posts Tagged ‘Epistle of James’

Tongue Tied?

The Epistle Lesson for the 17th Sunday after Pentecost (Year B) is James 3 : 1-12.  It is about the weakest part of our body, the tongue which can do the greatest damage in teaching false doctrine, cursing and damning a neighbor and yet on a Sunday sing God’s praises.  So this cartoon:

Now we are encouraged  to “bridle our tongues”  (James 1:26but the point of James and the entire Bible, God’s Word,  is not merely to shut-up!  Thomas Aquinas said,   “If the highest aim of a captain were to preserve his ship, he would keep it in port forever”.  Yes, if preserving the tongue were the highest aim, we should just shut up and never speak.  This is not what James is getting at.  Even so, we would still sin by thought!    Now I can say whatever I want, but not everything is helpful and so I am still sinning by my tongue.  We will have slips, yes, great falls and stumbles with what we say.  Then we turn in repentance to the Lord for forgiveness.  He forgives and  He wants us to speak of His Word so that many may hear and believe, so we can warn a brother or sister of peril,  so we can guide someone along the Way of Jesus Christ, so we can pray.  He said to the deaf and mute man, Ephphatha, Be opened! Mark 7:34  King David prayed, O Lord, open Thou my lips and my mouth shall show forth Thy praise. (Psalm 51: 15)  Not tongue tied, but the tongue set free!

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