Posted by: trbccoffeebreak | March 8, 2022

Two-Faced Tongue

“With (the tongue) we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse people, who have been made in the likeness of God; from the same mouth come both blessing and cursing. My brothers and sisters, these things should not be this way.”  James 3:9-11

The Bible has a lot to say about the power of our words—both the Old and New Testaments are a treasure trove of wisdom. You can dig into the book of Proverbs alone and get plenty to chew on when it comes to your mouth (pun intended)! “Death and life are in the power of the tongue” (Proverbs 18:21) is one admonition that sets a solid foundation of truth.

James, in the third chapter of his book, gets really real with us—a true “ouch” moment. He talks about how we believers tend to praise God one minute and curse someone the next. The classic example is sitting through a church service, worshipping the Lord in song and through the sermon…then, you’re driving home only to start shouting at (and possibly cursing) some motorist who cut you off.

Part of Christian maturity is walking—and talking—in alignment with God’s Word. And that “sanctification journey” is just that—a journey. We cannot be perfect. Part of our motivation for living a holy life is to let our light shine in a dark world (Matt. 5:16). So, when we let unholy, slanderous, or hateful words fly, we hurt our testimony, as well as the reputation of the Church.

But there’s another motivation for not having a two-faced tongue. Think of this example: What if someone you love had a habit of consistently using their words in this way: “I love you!” … “You’re such a jerk!” … “You are so awesome!” … “(Expletive expletive!)” Not only would it be maddening, but it would be incredibly painful. (Some of us may not have to “imagine” this example at all, as we’ve lived it.) And this is what we’re doing to our precious Lord (James 3:9; Matthew 25:40-45). This is how we’re treating our Best Friend!

God’s Word also makes it very clear that what comes out of our mouth is a direct reflection of what’s in our hearts (Matt 12:34; Mark 7:20-23). So, to address our two-faced tongue, we need to be sure we don’t have a two-faced heart. Because our mouth overflows from what’s inside, we need to fill ourselves with the good stuff—and stay in fellowship with Christ. What does this look like, practically?

  • Meet daily with the Lord in prayer
  • Read and study God’s Word
  • Serve others (This seems like giving away, but it’s actually very filling!)
  • Be in community with fellow believers (Proverbs 13:20)
  • Don’t fill up on junk food for the heart: social media, news, gossip, etc.

“Lord, help me surrender control of my tongue to You, filling up my heart so its outflow is honoring to You and refreshing to others.”

For His Glory

Julianne Winkler Smith
TRBC Women’s Life



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