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James  ◦   Chapter 3

1My brothers and sisters, few of you are ready to become teachers because, those who teach must function at the highest standards.2All of us make mistakes, but it is the ones who always speak the truth and never speak evil who are healed, mature, and able to maintain governance over their entire being.

3A bit in the mouth of a horse can turn the entire animal.4A ship, though large and fighting powerful winds, is steered by a small rudder wherever the pilot wants it to go.5So too the tongue, though a small part of the body, can brag, exaggerate, and even make up stories. It only takes a small spark to start a forest burning.6The wrong words can start an inferno: lies have infected the cosmos with evil. They damage the entire being, searing the conscience and burning the heart, but lies will be consumed by eternal fire.

7Humans have tamed all kinds of animals, birds, reptiles and creatures of the sea,8but no one can make their words harmless. The mouth speaks venomous words, expressing the chaos and evil within the heart.

9One moment we praise God our Father, and the very next moment we curse the very men and women created in his image.10Think about it: Out of the same mouth come both praises and curses. My brothers and sisters, this is wrong, and it must stop.11Does a spring bring forth fresh water one moment and sewage the next?12Can a fig tree produce olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Neither can a sewer produce fresh water.

13Who of you is wise enough to understand God's methods and principles? Then show it by living in harmony with God's design for life–a life of love in action, giving in humility to bless and uplift others.14But to cherish self-centered, arrogant, mean-spirited, jealous motives in the heart misrepresents God and defames the truth.15Such principles do not originate in God, nor do they come from heaven, but are profane and destructive, and originate in Satan.16For selfishness, envy, and all violations of God's law of love break his design for life and cause chaos, disease, suffering, and everything evil.

17Real wisdom originates in heaven and is always pure, healing, restorative, kind, compassionate, selfless, merciful, peaceful, transformational, unbiased, and sincere.18Healers who share the Remedy in peace produce a gathering of the righteous.