Bridle the Tongue
People are waiting on God to move in their life, but God is waiting for them to bridle
their tongues (James 1:26) “if any man among you seem to be religious, and
bridles not his tongue, but deceives his own heart, this man’s religion is vain”. And
use their tongue to shape their lives (Proverbs 15:2,4) “the tongue of the wise
uses knowledge aright, but the mouth of fools pours our foolishness. A wholesome
tongue is a tree of life, but perverseness therein is a breach in the spirit”. People
have to stop blaming God for where they are and exercise using their tongues to
speak life into their circumstances.
Jesus says in Matthew 12:34-37) “O generation of vipers, how can you, being evil,
speak good things? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. A
good man out of the good treasure of the heart brings forth good things, and an
evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth evil things. But I say to you, that every
idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of
judgment. For by your words you shall be justified, and by your words you shall be
The Bible says “Now to Him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that
we ask or think, according to the power that works in us” (Ephesians 3:20).
Remember that the Bible says “a man’s belly shall be satisfied with the fruit of his
mouth, and with the increase of his lips shall he be filled. Death and life in the
power of the tongue; and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof” (Proverbs 18:
20-21). You exercise that power by what you say.
You are either speaking what the world says or what God says. Jesus says in John
6:63 “it is the spirit that quickens, the flesh profits nothing, the words that I speak to
you, they are spirit and they are life”. We have to speak what God said, because
His words are life. Jesus said “I speak to the world those things which I have heard
of Him. I speak that which I have seen with My Father” (John 8:26b,38a). We are
to be followers of God. Guide the words you say by the word of God.
10 of the 12 spies which went out to spy the land that God had said He had given
to them, came back with a evil report and we see that because they caused the
people to be faint-hearted, everybody over 20 years old and up, died in the
wilderness. God heard what they said and God said as you have spoken in My
ears, it shall be done to you (Numbers 13:33-14:32). They didn’t bridle their
tongue, and never entered the Promised Land.
Psalms 39:1 says “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”. David says in
Psalms 141:3 “set a watch, O Lord Yahweh, before my mouth, keep the door of my
lips”. Demons are given power by your mouth. The lips are called a door, and we
know that the devil comes in the door that people open with their mouth. Job says
to God to “teach me, and I will hold my tongue, and cause me to understand
wherein I have erred. How forcible are right words!” (Job 6:24,25a).
The bridle works to control. Psalms 32:9 says “be you not as the horse, or as the
mule, which have no understanding, whose mouth must be held in with bit and
bridle, less they comes near to you”. James applied the term “bridle” as a symbol
of the believer’s submission to God’s control. James says in verse 3:2-6 “for in
many things we offend all. If any man offend not in word, the same is a perfect
man, and able also to bridle the whole body. Behold we put bits in the horses
mouth, that they may obey us and we turn about their whole body. Behold also the
ships, which though they be so great, and are driven of fierce winds, yet are they
turned about with a very small helm, wherever the governor lists. Even so the
tongue is a little member, and boasts great things. Behold, how great a matter a
little fire kindles! And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity, so is the tongue
among our members, that it defiles the whole body, and sets on fire the course of
nature, and it is set on fire of hell”.
James says that we ought not speak blessings and curses out of the same mouth
(James 3:10). Jesus says in Matthews 5:44 “but I say to you, love your enemies,
bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which
despitefully use you, and persecute you”. We are to bless and curse not.
Some will say that bridling the tongue is works, and not grace, but if you will fill
yourself up with the word of God, your tongue will be changed “ effortlessly.
Remember, Jesus said “for by your words you shall be justified, and by your words
you shall be condemned”. It is your words, so it is very important for us to speak
God’s words in our life. Reading the word of God is not legalism, it is ammunition
to fight against the evil of this world. Jesus fought the devil in the wilderness with
“it is written”, then He spoke what God said about what the devil was tempting Him
with. We bridle our tongue by not speaking the circumstances. The Bible tells us
to speak to the mountain, not about it (Mark 11:23) “for verily I say to you, that
whosoever shall say to this mountain, be you removed, and be you cast into the
sea and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he
says shall come to pass, he shall have whatsoever he says”. Say what God says
about your circumstances.
Sermon by: Harriet Bond
Date: February 29, 2008