Sunday, September 16, 2018

Enemies Of The Church - Part 1 - The Tongue

Temple Baptist Church - 9-16-2018
James 3:1-10


A.  Division, the Pastor’s nightmare!  Did you know that the greatest problem that a pastor has in his work is division?  Division can be accomplished in more than one way, but the simplest of these ways is that of an unbridled tongue.

James 1:26  If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man’s religion is vain.

B.  We once said, “Keep your words short and sweet for you never know which ones you will eat.”  Speaking without thinking, in times of reaction, or in times of anger can do untold damage.  Once words are turned loose, there is neither stopping nor gathering them back up again. 

Psalms 64:3  Who whet their tongue like a sword, and bend their bows to shoot their arrows, even bitter words:

Illustration:  There was once a young man who spoke evil words against another man in the neighborhood.  Eventually, the young man realized his error and, with a repentant heart, approached his former enemy.  He asked, “What can I do to make up for the damage that I have caused through my talking about you to others?”  The neighbor who was hurt in the incident said, “Young man, get you a feather pillow and get into the back of my truck.”  The young man did not understand the reasoning behind such a request but, willing to make things right, obeyed.  The neighbor then said, “Cut the pillow open with your knife and, as I drive across town, scatter the feathers on the way.”  The young man agreed, again not understanding.  When they had driven across town and all of the feathers were scattered, the young man asked, “What good did scattering the feathers across town do?”  The neighbor then said, “Go back the way that you came and gather up all of the feathers that you scattered.”  The young man cried, “That is impossible!”  The neighbor replied, “I forgive you but neither can you go back and gather up all of the words that you have scattered about me!”

C.  How true!  The tongue can be destructive and become an enemy of the church.

Proverbs 18:21   Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.
D.  The tongue must be guarded, even in times of hurt and anger because words spoken cannot be taken back.  My wife’s life verse is Proverbs 21:23 and it is a good one.

Proverbs 21:23   Whoso keepeth his mouth and his tongue keepeth his soul from troubles.

Psalms 34:13  Keep thy tongue from evil, and thy lips from speaking guile.

Psalms 39:1  I said, I will take heed to my ways, that I sin not with my tongue: I will keep my mouth with a bridle, while the wicked is before me.

Psalms 39:3  My heart was hot within me, while I was musing the fire burned: then spake I with my tongue,

1 Peter 3:10  For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile:

E.  The tongue shows where the condition of the heart.

Luke 6:45 A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is evil: for of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaketh.

Matthew 12:36-37  But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. 37 For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.

F.  If the shoe fits this morning, then put it on.  Clean it up and let it shine for Christ instead of wading it through the mud.


1.  A Divisive Tongue - Proverbs 6:16-19  These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: 17  A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, 18  An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief, 19  A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren.  (Discord – to play a wrong note.  To be out of step.  To walk contrary to something.)

2.  A Disgruntled Tongue - Acts 6:1  And in those days, when the number of the disciples was multiplied, there arose a murmuring of the Grecians against the Hebrews, because their widows were neglected in the daily ministration.  (Why did they not do something about it except murmur?  It was THEIR widows!  Some people always go around griping about what they do not like or disagree with but, normally, not to the pastor.  They look for a listening ear.  It is a tongue that does not like; a tongue that does not agree; a tongue that likes to stay hidden from view; a devilish tongue is a disgruntled tongue.)

3.  A Gossiping Tongue - Proverbs 26:20   Where no wood is, there the fire goeth out: so where there is no talebearer, the strife ceaseth.  (Did you know that gossip can be very easily stopped?)

            Here are some questions that will stop the gossiping tongue”

a. What is your reason for telling me?

b. Where did you get your information?

c. Have you gone to those directly involved?

d. Have you personally checked out all the facts?

e. Can I quote you if I check this out?

f.  Let us go to the pastor and you can tell him.

4.  A Backbiting Tongue - Psalms 15:1-3  LORD, who shall abide in thy tabernacle? who shall dwell in thy holy hill? 2  He that walketh uprightly, and worketh righteousness, and speaketh the truth in his heart. 3  He that backbiteth not with his tongue, nor doeth evil to his neighbour, nor taketh up a reproach against his neighbour.

Romans 1:30  Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents,

Psalms 101:5  Whoso privily slandereth his neighbour, him will I cut off: him that hath an high look and a proud heart will not I suffer.

Exodus 20:16  Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour.

Leviticus 19:16  Thou shalt not go up and down as a talebearer among thy people: neither shalt thou stand against the blood of thy neighbour: I am the LORD.

1 Timothy 3:11  Even so must their wives be grave, not slanderers, sober, faithful in all things.
1 Timothy 5:13  And withal they learn to be idle, wandering about from house to house; and not only idle, but tattlers also and busybodies, speaking things which they ought not.

5.  A Prating Tongue - 3 John 9-10   I wrote unto the church: but Diotrephes, who loveth to have the preeminence among them, receiveth us not. 10  Wherefore, if I come, I will remember his deeds which he doeth, prating against us with malicious words: and not content therewith, neither doth he himself receive the brethren, and forbiddeth them that would, and casteth them out of the church.

1 Timothy 5:19  Against an elder receive not an accusation, but before two or three witnesses.  (Not gossipers!)

6.  A Deceitful Tongue - Psalms 50:19  Thou givest thy mouth to evil, and thy tongue frameth deceit.
Psalms 52:2  Thy tongue deviseth mischiefs; like a sharp razor, working deceitfully.

Psalms 52:4  Thou lovest all devouring words, O[thou deceitful tongue.

7.  A Murmuring Tongue – Acts 6:1   And in those days, when the number of the disciples was multiplied, there arose a murmuring of the Grecians against the Hebrews, because their widows were neglected in the daily ministration.

Exodus 16:8  And Moses said, This shall be, when the LORD shall give you in the evening flesh to eat, and in the morning bread to the full; for that the LORD heareth your murmurings which ye murmur against him: and what arewe? your murmurings are not against us, but against the LORD.

1 Corinthians 10:10  Neither murmur ye, as some of them also murmured, and were destroyed of the destroyer.

Philippians 2:14   Do all things without murmurings and disputings:

8.  A Discouraging Tongue - Deuteronomy 1:28  Whither shall we go up? our brethren have discouraged our heart, saying, The people is greater and taller than we; the cities are great and walled up to heaven; and moreover we have seen the sons of the Anakims there.

9.  A Lying Tongue - Psalms 109:2  For the mouth of the wicked and the mouth of the deceitful are opened against me: they have spoken against me with a lying tongue.

Psalms 120:2-3  Deliver my soul, O LORD, from lying lips, and from a deceitful tongue. 3  What shall be given unto thee? or what shall be done unto thee, thou false tongue?

Proverbs 6:17  A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood,

Proverbs 26:28   A lying tongue hateth those that are afflicted by it; and a flattering mouth worketh ruin.

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