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A devilish tongue

By   /   November 26, 2009  /   Comments

We use our tongues to praise our Lord and Father, but then we curse people, whom God made like himself. Praises and curses come from the same mouth! My brothers and sisters, this should not happen. – James 3:9-10 (NCV)

How do you praise God with your tongue? How have you cursed other people with that same tongue? Why does James say this “should not happen”? How have you felt when you have been cursed? Why have you cursed others?

The following is from — Sam O’Neal, “Tasmanian Devils Spread Cancer with Their Mouths,” PreachingToday.com.

In January 2006, Australian scientists discovered the cause of a mysterious disease that had killed thousands of Tasmanian devils on the island state of Tasmania, off the coast of Australia. The scientists initially believed the deaths were caused by a virus; however, their research ultimately uncovered a rare, fatal cancer. They named it Devil Facial Tumor Disease, or DFTD.

What is strange, according to cytogeneticist Anne-Marie Pearse, is that the abnormalities in the chromosomes of the cancer cells were the same in every tumor. That means the disease began in the mouth of a single sick devil. The ferocious little animal facilitated the spread of DFTD by biting its neighbors when squabbling for food, which, according to Pearse, is a natural behavior of Tasmanian devils. “Devils jaw–wrestle and bite each other a lot, usually in the face and around the mouth, and bits of tumor break off one devil and stick in the wounds of another,” Pearse said.

Over the course of several years, infected devils continued to inflict deadly wounds with their mouths. Consequently, DFTD spread at an alarming rate, ultimately wiping out over 40 percent of the devil population.

A similar fate threatens the church if its members persist in the devilish behavior of wounding their neighbors with their mouths.

Isaac could not take back the blessing he had been tricked into giving Jacob, a blessing that was reserved for Esau, because words cannot be taken back. Once they are uttered they are out, and they can cause deep and horrible anguish. Too often we have used words to cause pain. Those who proclaim Christ as Lord never should use words in such horrible ways! Instead we must use our tongues to proclaim the glory of God and to bless our neighbors with love. The cancer of hate will stop spreading the moment we decide to stop spreading it, today let us stop!


Written by Rev. Garrett Andrew, minister of First Presbyterian Church of Albany, Georgia. Read his blog.

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  • Published: 2108 days ago on November 26, 2009
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  • Last Modified: November 23, 2009 @ 7:52 pm
  • Filed Under: Rev. Andrew

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