Don't Fan The Flames

Wednesday, July 22, 2015
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Listen while you read: "The Church's One Foundation"1 (Lyrics)

As of the middle of July, over 32,000 square kilometres of forest had been burning in Canada's summer heat, with the largest wildfires in Saskatchewan. Over 13,000 people had been forced to leave their homes. There is nothing like the destruction of a fire! Homes are lost, personal items that can never be replaced are suddenly gone, and people have to readjust in many ways.

This all reminds me that God's Word compares our tongues to a fire:

James 3:5-6 – Even so the tongue is a little member and boasts great things. See how great a forest a little fire kindles! And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity. The tongue is so set among our members that it defiles the whole body, and sets on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire by hell. (NKJV)

An unruly tongue that gossips can do much harm to others. It can ruin another's credibility and reputation. As a fire can cause great destruction, so gossip can destroy the lives of those it affects. Shaming and bullying on school playgrounds and on social media are examples of how destructive words can be, especially when young people are led as, a result, to commit suicide.

Christians should be very careful with our speech. In fact, the Bible has harsh words for those who don't bridle their tongue:

James 1:26 – If anyone among you thinks he is religious, and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his own heart, this one's religion is useless. (NKJV)

If we hear gossip about another, don't repeat it!

Proverbs 26:20 – Where there is no wood, the fire goes out; and where there is no talebearer, strife ceases. (NKJV)

Colossians 4:6 – Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you ought to answer each one. (NKJV)

1 Peter 3:10 – He who would love life and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips from speaking deceit. (NKJV)

Prayer: Heavenly Father, we come before You, realizing that in and of ourselves, without You, we are nothing. We are in a spiritual battle as long as we are in this world. Help us to guard our tongues so that we always give glory to You and never do harm to anyone. In Christ's name, we pray. Amen.

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About the author:

Bob Jones <>
Grafton, New Brunswick, Canada

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Always a good reminder Bob.

    Thank you for today’s devotional Bob.

    Well said what a good analogy. Thank you.

    Good Morning To You.
    Words of truth, that sends no comfort to the flesh. But, refreshment to the Soul of the Saints.

    Thank you for a very thoughtful devotional.
    I spent a dozen or so shifts on the feeding line for the fire evacuees in Saskatoon.
    A reminder to all of us to watch our words.
    Why is it that we remember one bad word against us when so many positives are also said?
    May God help us live the kind of lives that are pleasing to Him.

    Dear Bob Jones,
    Thank you for a very teaching devotional. May God control out tongues.
    For his sake, I pray that we will be so taken to spreading the Good News of Jesus Christ that we’ll have no time for gossip and unkind words.
    Keep writing.

    Hello Bob.
    Thank you for the devotional today. My family was just talking about gossip earlier this week and how it can be so destructive. And one of the worst places is the church.
    An issue we were talking about, if it goes the wrong direction, could destroy a new Christian and a dear friend.
    I have to look at myself and make sure that I’m not guilty of doing the same. I have a great responsibility as a Christian to be strong for a new Christian.
    So thanks again for helping me with all of your special words and verses today. Keep doing what you’re doing, and bless you for blessing others.

    Good reminder! Thanks.

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