Brothers | Out of Control | Toxic Tongues
But no one can tame the tongue; it is a restless evil and full of deadly poison. (James 3:8)
Among the deadliest snakes in the world are the Carpet Viper and the Black Mamba. They earned this title by being easily provoked and quickly aggressive. While the Black Mamba has been called the most aggressive snake on land, the Carpet Viper has killed more people than any other. Although small in size, its venom is so toxic that one bite can induce brain hemorrhaging, tissue damage, and death for anyone unfortunate enough to be seen as an enemy.
The way James talks about the tongue, we have to wonder if he’d met a Carpet Viper. Although we may not hide under rocks, our tongues can be aggressive and deadly when we’re provoked. “I hate you!” we scream at the ones we love most. “Just get a divorce!” we snap at the one to whom we’ve pledged “til death do us part.” “You’ll never do anything right!” we hiss because our peace has been disturbed. Like poisonous snakes, our tongues strike without caring about the damage they leave behind. Whoever made up the silly rhyme “Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me” has never been bitten by venomous words. Words DO hurt. They can be deadly. When speaking out is necessary, first remove the venom.
Final Thought: You may never turn a Carpet Viper loose on those around you, but are your words just as venomous?
Prayer: Father, I have to get control of this. Your word is revealing to me just how irresponsible I’ve been with my words. I have a habit of ugly words, so please help me change that. May your Holy Spirit approve every word. In Jesus’ name, Amen.