The Untamable Tongue
OBJECTIVE: To read and discuss the idea of taming the tongue
Feasting on the Word:
James begins the discussion of taming the tongue with a warning in verse 1.
What is the warning? Discuss what it means, in verse 2, that we all “stumble
in many things.” How can we “stumble” in what we say?
James often uses word pictures to illustrate his point. What word picture does
he use, in verse 3, to describe the power of the tongue?
What word picture does he use in verse 4?
Verse 5 teaches that even though the tongue is a little part of the body, it
boasts great things. Then what word picture is used?
How can the tongue corrupt the whole body? Discuss verse 6.
Verses 7 and 8 explain that animals can be tamed. What cannot be tamed? It
is “full of” what?
From verses 9 and 10, explain why it is wrong to use your tongue to bless
God and curse men. (Read also 1 John 4:20-21.) In verses 11 and 12,
James uses three more word pictures to illustrate this point. What are they?
Discuss some ways that your tongue can hurt others. How can it cause you to
sin? What should you do when you have said something you shouldn’t have
said? Name some strategies you can use to keep your tongue from evil.
This week, use your tongue for good. Make a list of good things to say. Show
appreciation to others. Say “please” and “thank you.” Encourage someone
who is lonely or sick. Sing praises to God. Pray. What else can you add to the
list? Post the list on the refrigerator as a reminder.
Family Project: Take time to work on your family project. (Refer to list.)