James has explained to us two characteristics of the mature Christian: he is patient in trouble (James 1) and he practices the truth (James 2). In this section, he shares the third characteristic of the mature believer: he has power over his tongue.
A pastor friend told me about a member of his church who was a notorious gossip. She would “hang on the phone” most of the day, sharing tidbits with any and all who would listen.
She came to the pastor one day and said, “Pastor, the Lord has convicted me of my sin of gossip. My tongue is getting me and others into trouble.”
My friend knew she was not sincere because she had gone through that routine before. Guardedly he asked, “Well, what do you plan to do?”
“I want to put my tongue on the altar,” she replied with pious fervor.
Calmly my friend replied…
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