Sir Godfrey Gregg D. DIV, LOM
LIKE A RUDDER!
The book of Proverbs is packed with wisdom concerning our tongue, and I admonish you to read it, but let’s take a look at the book of James. It contains one of the most revealing passages of Scripture on the power of our tongue.
“My brethren, be not many masters, knowing that we shall receive the greater condemnation.
For in many things we offend all. If any man offends not in word, the same is a perfect man, and able also to bridle the whole body.
Behold, we put bits in the horses’ mouths, that they may obey us; and we turn about their whole body.
Behold also the ships, which though they are so great, and are driven of fierce winds, yet are they turned about with a very small helm, whithersoever the governor listeth.
Even so, the tongue is a little member, and boasteth great things. Behold how great a matter a little fire kindleth!
And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of hell.” James 3:1-6
Wow? Our tongue can defile our entire body! It sets the course of our life in motion – good or bad. James compares our tongue to the rudder on a ship, and although it’s a little member of our body, it can completely direct our life. Our tongue can kindle the flames of hellish events if we do not take it under control.
Let me clearly say that if our life is in a mess, it’s because of what we have confessed with our mouth and believed in our heart as we read earlier in Romans 10. If we don’t like where our life is headed, as with a ship, we must first put pressure on the rudder of our tongue. Eventually, if held steady, it will turn the course of our lives. And yet, as important as the tongue is, the decision of what is spoken lies in the heart. Jesus, Himself, said that out of the abundance of our heart, our mouth speaks (Matthew 12:34).
What is in our heart in abundance? We can determine the contents by listening to the words that flow from our mouth because it is the release valve. Our mouth is the vehicle through which our inner being speaks. It says what our heart believes and we will get exactly what we say, just like the rudder steers the ship toward its ultimate destination!