2 Kinds of Speech!

Photo by Clem Onojeghuo on Unsplash 

2 Kinds of Speech: Praising & Cursing! 

James 3:9-12 “9 With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. 10 Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be. 11 Can both fresh water and salt water flow from the same spring? 12 My brothers and sisters, can a fig tree bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Neither can a salt spring produce fresh water.” 

James, the leader of the Church in Jerusalem, who penned the epistle of James, the half-brother of Jesus, states that the believers were practicing two kinds of speech!  Praising and cursing! 

One minute the worshipers were praising God!  The next minute they were cursing their fellow man.  This is the idea James is trying to communicate:  Belief matches Speech!  Our conversations should reflect what we believe.  If we are Christ-followers, then our speech should reflect this. 

I am reminded of what John said in 1 John 1:6,8, “6 If we claim to have fellowship with him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live out the truth…8 If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.”   John echoes what James says, our speech should line-up, match our beliefs.  If we say we love God but hate our fellow man (who is created in God’s image) then we are only fooling ourselves. 

What does it take to have our speech match our beliefs? 

Our speech can match our beliefs when our mind has been transformed. 

Another scripture that reveals transformation is Romans 12:2, “2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.”   To break the world’s pattern is to allow God’s Spirit to renew your mind by His Holy Word.  Soak up scripture, memorize it, meditate on it, apply it to your life, recite it to others.  This will allow the Lord to season your conversations with His Word and His grace. 

I remember as a child; I had an awful time trying to break the habit of cursing.  I went to prayer often, asking God to help me.  Memorizing Scripture and thinking about God’s Word made the nasty words disappear! The Lord was renewing my mind. 

Our speech can match our beliefs when our heart has been cleansed from sin. 

It is very hard to act like Jesus when sin is still infecting one’s life.  Unconfessed sin only makes matters worse.   Trying to cover up one’s sin only makes matters worse.  Confessing sin to God, brings cleansing, healing and reconciliation.   God pours out His grace and mercy and begins to rebuild one’s life with His righteousness.   His Spirit places a longing in one’s heart for Holiness.   There is no need to cover-up or hide sin.  Confession is a natural flow of one’s loving relationship with God.  (see 1 John 1:9). 

A clean heart, being right with God allows one to be and function in a right relationship with others.   Seeing others as God see’s them is freeing, respectful and a kingdom principle.   It is part of loving others as God loves them.  It is allow His love to flow through you so you can love them the way He does.   Hateful speech does not lead to the path of healing or reconciliation.   Loving speech, listening ears, humility and forgiveness leads to the path of healing and reconciliation. 

It is easy to be angry and let your tongue fly off “the handle.”  It is very hard to control your anger and listen, then offer words that promote understanding and healing.   But it will lead to peace.   Proverbs 15:1 states, “A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. (NIV)”  A heart cleansed from within can speak words that reflect God’s love. 

Our speech can match our beliefs when our entire body has been set apart to God 

Here again, look at Romans 12:1, “Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship.(NIV)”   Notice what is one’s “true and proper” form of worship?  To offer our bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God!  So we are to set apart our body as a temple of God.  His Spirit dwells with-in the believer and makes the believer Holy.   God does this.  When this transformation takes place, sin’s control is broken.  Christ sets the captive free!  Sin is no longer your master, Jesus Christ is! 

You can act like Jesus when talking and relating to others. You can be like Jesus every day.  Being filled with Holy Spirit is key (see Ephesians 5:18).   Walking in the Spirit is necessary (see Galatians 5??) Allowing the Holy Spirit to work in your life breaks the hypocrisy and brings wholeness.   This is living on a higher level! 

Your speech can match belief when your mind is transformed, your heart is clean and your body has been set apart as an instrument of worship! Others will know you as the “real deal,” not a hypocrite, not a phony, but a lover of God who loves people.   If ever we need to love like God loves, it is today.  Why not ask Him to help you be a person who praises Him and love others with His love?    I would love to hear how God is working in your life.  Let me know by making a comment or sending me an email. 

Growing together, 


2 Timothy 1:7