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Message Notes & Questions – July 12

James: Faith in the Real World

Wk 6 “Words Matter”

James 3:1-12

 

James 3:1-12
​Not many of you should become teachers, my fellow believers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly. We all stumble in many ways. Anyone who is never at fault in what they say is perfect, able to keep their whole body in check. When we put bits into the mouths of horses to make them obey us, we can turn the whole animal. Or take ships as an example. Although they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are steered by a very small rudder wherever the pilot wants to go. Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one’s life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell. All kinds of animals, birds, reptiles and sea creatures are being tamed and have been tamed by mankind, but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison. With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be. Can both fresh water and salt water flow from the same spring? My brothers and sisters, can a fig tree bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Neither can a salt spring produce fresh water.

 

Words have the power to direct

Words have the power to destroy

Words have the power to delight

 

Words have the Power to Direct

Greater authority, has greater accountability

 

James 3:1-2
Not many of you should become teachers, my fellow believers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly. We all stumble in many ways. Anyone who is never at fault in what they say is perfect, able to keep their whole body in check.

 

Matthew 12:36-37
But I tell you that everyone will have to give account on the day of judgment for every empty word they have spoken. For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned.”

 

James 1:26
Those who consider themselves religious and yet do not keep a tight rein on their tongues deceive themselves, and their religion is worthless.

 

Proverbs 21:23
Those who guard their mouths and their tongues keep themselves from calamity.

 

James 3:3-4
When we put bits into the mouths of horses to make them obey us, we can turn the whole animal. Or take ships as an example. Although they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are steered by a very small rudder wherever the pilot wants to go.

 

Our Words Have the Power to Destroy

 

 

James 3:5-6
Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one’s life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell.

 

We can see four truths in verse 6….

-Our words are not righteous

-The fires we start with our words quickly become infernos, or megafires

-Our words can defile us and set the direction of our lives

-Our words when used poorly come from the pit of hell

 

Proverbs 16:27
A scoundrel plots evil, and on their lips it is like a scorching fire.

 

James 3:7-8
All kinds of animals, birds, reptiles and sea creatures are being tamed and have been tamed by mankind, but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.

 

Our Words Have the Power to Delight

 

James 3:9-12
With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be. Can both fresh water and salt water flow from the same spring? My brothers and sisters, can a fig tree bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Neither can a salt spring produce fresh water.

 

Romans 7:18-20
For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.

 

Before you say anything, think about what you want to say and ask yourself these questions;

 

  1. Is it true?
  2. Is it helpful?
  3. Does it lift up, or tear down?
  4. Do I really need to say it?
  5. Is it kind?

 

Do your words draw people to faith in Jesus, or do they push them away?

 

Bottom Line

Control your words, or they will control you!

 

 

Notes:

 

 

 

 

 

Small Group Questions

  1. Read James 3: (1-12) Why would teachers have a stricter Judgement? Can you recall a time when a teacher perhaps steered you in a wrong direction?

 

 

  1. Read Matthew 12: 36-37 As Christians what account will we have to give on the day of judgement? Is it different for non-Christians? Why is it important that our words matter, in light of the first two parts of this question?

 

  1. Do you recall something mean someone said to you a long time ago? Something good?  Is there something you regret saying?  Can you get it back once said?

 

 

  1. James 3:8 states that no human being can tame the tongue. Why is the tongue so powerful? How can we make sure that God tames it for us and the devil does not help stir it up?

 

 

  1. Read Proverbs 16:27 How can you deal with folks with an unbridled tongue who say, “This is the way God made me?” Have you ever met someone with lips like a scorching fire? Is it possible to give the gospel message to someone that fits that description?

 

  1. Read Romans 7: 18-20 In a world that seems so upside down where those with opposite opinions may challenge your faith, directly and right in your face (or your Facebook feed), what are some things you should ask yourself before you say anything?

 

 

 

  1. Continue to pray for the church, our country, and for all those who do not have a personal relationship with Jesus. Be a bridge this week to someone who doesn’t know Christ.