The Strength to Use Your Tongue Well

Dr. Steve Viars October 7, 2012

Please Note: the full transcript is available in the Manuscript link above. 

James 3:2-8 - For we all stumble in many ways. If anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect man, able to bridle the whole body as well. Now if we put the bits into the horses’ mouths so that they will obey us, we direct their entire body as well…So also the tongue is a small part of the body, and yet it boasts of great things. See how great a forest is set aflame by such a small fire!  And the tongue is a fire, the very world of iniquity; the tongue is set among our members as that which defiles the entire body, and sets on fire the course of our life, and is set on fire by hell. For every species of beasts and birds, of reptiles and creatures of the sea, is tamed and has been tamed by the human race. But no one can tame the tongue; it is a restless evil and full of deadly poison.

I. Your Words Can Reveal a Heart that is Hard

A. Because it was both deceived and deceiving

Luke 23:2 - And they began to accuse Him, saying, “We found this man misleading our nation”

Luke 23:2 - …and forbidding to pay taxes to Caesar…

Luke 23:2 - …and saying that He Himself is Christ, a King.

Luke 23:5 - But they kept on insisting, saying, “He stirs up the people, teaching all over Judea, starting from Galilee even as far as this place.”

B. Because it was cowardly

Luke 23:6-7 - When Pilate heard it, he asked whether the man was a Galilean.  And when he learned that He belonged to Herod’s jurisdiction, he sent Him to Herod, who himself also was in Jerusalem at that time.

Luke 23:8 - Now Herod was very glad when he saw Jesus; for he had wanted to see Him for a long time, because he had been hearing about Him and was hoping to see some sign performed by Him.

Luke 23:11 - And Herod with his soldiers, after treating Him with contempt and mocking Him, dressed Him in a gorgeous robe and sent Him back to Pilate.

Luke 23:16 - Therefore I will punish Him and release Him.

Luke 23:22 - …Why, what evil has this man done? I have found in Him no guilt demanding death; therefore I will punish Him and release Him.

Luke 23:24 - And Pilate pronounced sentence that their demand be granted.

Luke 23:12 - Now Herod and Pilate became friends with one another that very day; for before they had been enemies with each other.

C. Because it is murderous

Luke 23:21 - but they kept on calling out, saying, “Crucify, crucify Him!”

Luke 23:23 - But they were insistent, with loud voices asking that He be crucified. And their voices began to prevail.

Proverbs 12:15 - The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, but a wise man is he who listens to counsel.

Proverbs 29:25 - The fear of man brings a snare, but he who trusts in the Lord will be exalted.

Matthew 5:21-22 - You have heard that the ancients were told, “You shall not commit murder” and “Whoever commits murder shall be liable to the court.” But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother shall be guilty before the court; and whoever says to his brother, “You good-for-nothing,” shall be guilty before the supreme court; and whoever says, “You fool,” shall be guilty enough to go into the fiery hell.

II. Jesus' Words Revealed a Heart of Wisdom and Compassion

A. He said very little

Proverbs 10:19 - When there are many words, transgression is unavoidable, but he who restrains his lips is wise.

James 1:19-20 - This you know, my beloved brethren. But everyone must be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger; for the anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God.

B. He spoke words of forgiveness

Luke 23:34 - But Jesus was saying, “Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing.” 

C. He spoke words of hope

Luke 23:43 - And He said to him, “Truly I say to you, today you shall be with Me in Paradise.”

D. He spoke words of trust

Luke 23:46 - And Jesus, crying out with a loud voice, said, “Father, into Your hands I commit My spirit.” Having said this, He breathed His last.

Dr. Steve Viars


Senior Pastor - Faith Church

Director - Faith Legacy Foundation


B.S.: Pre-Seminary & Bible, Baptist Bible College (Now Clarks Summit University)
M.Div.: Grace Theological Seminary
D.Min.: Biblical Counseling, Westminster Theological Seminary

Dr. Steve Viars has served at Faith Church in Lafayette, IN since 1987. Pastor Viars leads and equips Faith Church as Senior Pastor with a focus on preaching and teaching God’s Word and using his organizational skills in guiding the implementation of the Faith Church mission and vision. He oversees the staff, deacons, and all Faith Church ministries. Dr. Viars serves on the boards of the Association of Certified Biblical Counselors, Biblical Counseling Coalition, Vision of Hope, and the Faith Community Development Corporation. Steve is the author, co-author, or contributor to six books and numerous booklets. He and his wife, Kris, were married in 1982 and have two married daughters, a son, and three grandchildren.

Read Steve Viars’ Journey to Faith for the full account of how the Lord led Pastor Viars to Faith Church.

View Pastor Viars' Salvation Testimony Video