Worthless Religion

If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person’s religion is worthless. Religion that is pure and undefiled before God the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.
James 1:26–27
Worthless Religion
The tongue is the window into the heart. Jesus warns us that it is the stuff that comes out of the mouth that defiles a man, not the things that go in. The old playbook of the devil is saturated with different techniques to change the Word of God to a lie, but even so, we are good at foolish talk, arrogant talk, course talk, and even evil talk. Our tongues are good at hating and explaining everything in the worst way. The tongue must be held accountable. Like a horse needs a bit and bridle, so also the human tongue needs the Law to keep it in check. The Law must be applied and used and the Gospel supplied that the heart is not deceived. What is the result? The tongue declares the wonder of the faith planted in the Christian’s heart. The tongue speaks the Word of God and testifies to the faith that God supplies. The tongue speaks of the good gifts and the good works, but it must be trained. It must point the whole body to the cross. The only way that is possible is by the cross. The work of Jesus makes new what is stone: the heart. For Christ creates in us a clean heart and a right spirit that moves out in love to orphan and widow. He makes new and makes us holy that we would be unstained by the world.
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