James 3:2
Parallel Verses
New International Version
We all stumble in many ways. Anyone who is never at fault in what they say is perfect, able to keep their whole body in check.

New Living Translation
Indeed, we all make many mistakes. For if we could control our tongues, we would be perfect and could also control ourselves in every other way.

English Standard Version
For we all stumble in many ways. And if anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect man, able also to bridle his whole body.

New American Standard Bible
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.

King James Bible
For in many things we offend all. If any man offend not in word, the same is a perfect man, and able also to bridle the whole body.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
for we all stumble in many ways. If anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a mature man who is also able to control his whole body.

International Standard Version
For all of us make many mistakes. If someone does not make any mistakes when he speaks, he is perfect and able to control his whole body.

NET Bible
For we all stumble in many ways. If someone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect individual, able to control the entire body as well.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
For all of us stumble much Everyone who does not slip in his speech is a perfect man who can subdue also his whole body.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
All of us make a lot of mistakes. If someone doesn't make any mistakes when he speaks, he would be perfect. He would be able to control everything he does.

Jubilee Bible 2000
For we all offend in many things. If any man offends not in word, the same is a perfect man, and able also to govern the whole body with restraint.

King James 2000 Bible
For in many things we all offend. If any man offend not in word, the same is a perfect man, and able also to bridle the whole body.

American King James Version
For in many things we offend all. If any man offend not in word, the same is a perfect man, and able also to bridle the whole body.

American Standard Version
For in many things we all stumble. If any stumbleth not in word, the same is a perfect man, able to bridle the whole body also.

Douay-Rheims Bible
For in many things we all offend. If any man offend not in word, the same is a perfect man. He is able also with a bridle to lead about the whole body.

Darby Bible Translation
For we all often offend. If any one offend not in word, *he* [is] a perfect man, able to bridle the whole body too.

English Revised Version
For in many things we all stumble. If any stumbleth not in word, the same is a perfect man, able to bridle the whole body also.

Webster's Bible Translation
For in many things we all offend. If any man offendeth not in word, the same is a perfect man, able also to bridle the whole body.

Weymouth New Testament
For we often stumble and fall, all of us. If there is any one who never stumbles in speech, that man has reached maturity of character and is able to curb his whole nature.

World English Bible
For in many things we all stumble. If anyone doesn't stumble in word, the same is a perfect man, able to bridle the whole body also.

Young's Literal Translation
for we all make many stumbles; if any one in word doth not stumble, this one is a perfect man, able to bridle also the whole body;
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

3:1-12 We are taught to dread an unruly tongue, as one of the greatest evils. The affairs of mankind are thrown into confusion by the tongues of men. Every age of the world, and every condition of life, private or public, affords examples of this. Hell has more to do in promoting the fire of the tongue than men generally think; and whenever men's tongues are employed in sinful ways, they are set on fire of hell. No man can tame the tongue without Divine grace and assistance. The apostle does not represent it as impossible, but as extremely difficult. Other sins decay with age, this many times gets worse; we grow more froward and fretful, as natural strength decays, and the days come on in which we have no pleasure. When other sins are tamed and subdued by the infirmities of age, the spirit often grows more tart, nature being drawn down to the dregs, and the words used become more passionate. That man's tongue confutes itself, which at one time pretends to adore the perfections of God, and to refer all things to him; and at another time condemns even good men, if they do not use the same words and expressions. True religion will not admit of contradictions: how many sins would be prevented, if men would always be consistent! Pious and edifying language is the genuine produce of a sanctified heart; and none who understand Christianity, expect to hear curses, lies, boastings, and revilings from a true believer's mouth, any more than they look for the fruit of one tree from another. But facts prove that more professors succeed in bridling their senses and appetites, than in duly restraining their tongues. Then, depending on Divine grace, let us take heed to bless and curse not; and let us aim to be consistent in our words and actions.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 2. - Γὰρ gives the reason for this κρίμα. We shall be judged because in many things we all stumble, and it is implied that teachers are in danger of greater condemnation, because it is almost impossible to govern the tongue completely. With the thought comp. Ecclesiastes 7:20, "There is not a just man upon earth that doeth good and sinneth not." Πολλά is adverbial, as in Matthew 9:14, and may be either

(1) "in many things," or

(2) "oft." Ἅπαντες. No se ipsos quidem excipiunt apostoli (Bengel). If any stumbleth not in word (R.V.). "Control of speech is named, not as in itself constituting perfection, but as a crucial test indicating whether the man has or has not attained unto it" (Plumptre). Τέλειος (see James 1:4). Ξαλιναγωγεῖν (cf. James 1:26). It is only found in these two passages; never in the LXX.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

For in many things we offend all,.... Or "we all offend", slip and fall; no man lives without sin; in many, in most, if not in all things, a good man himself does, he sins; and this extends to the most solemn services, and best works of a good man; there is sin in his holy things, imperfections in all his performances; his righteousnesses are as filthy rags; hence no man can be justified by his works before God, nor is any man perfect in this life, so as to be without sin in himself: the apostle includes himself in this account, and that not out of modesty merely, or in a complaisant way, but as matter of fact, and what he found in himself, and observed in the conduct of his life: and now this is given as a reason why persons should not be anxious of teaching others, since in many instances, in common speech and conversation, men are apt to offend, and much more in a work which requires a multitude of words; or why men should be careful how they charge, censure, and reprove others, in a rash, furious, and unchristian manner; since they themselves are in the body, and may be tempted, and are attended with many infirmities, slips, and falls in common life.

If any man offend not in word; from slips and falls in general, the apostle proceeds to the slips of the tongue, and to the use and abuse of that member; and his sense is, that if a man has so much guard upon himself, and such a command over his tongue, and so much wisdom to use it, as to give no offence by it, to his fellow creatures, and fellow Christians:

the same is a perfect man; not that he is perfect in himself, and without sin, that is denied before; unless this is considered as a mere hypothesis, and by way of concession; that could there be found out a man that never, for instance, offends in word in anyone part of life, that man may be allowed, and be set down to be a perfect man; but no such man is to be found, and therefore none perfect: but rather the sense is, that he who in common is so careful of his speech, as not to offend his brethren, may be looked upon as a sincere and truly religious man; See James 1:26 or he may be accounted a wise and prudent man, such an one as in James 3:13 he is not a babe in understanding, a child in conduct, but a grown man; at full age; a perfect man; in which sense the word is used in 1 Corinthians 2:6.

And able also to bridle the whole body; either to govern the whole body, the church, to teach a society of Christians, and to feed them with knowledge, and with understanding; or rather, as he appears to be able to bridle that member of the body, the tongue, so likewise to be able, through the grace of God, to keep under the whole body, that sin shall not reign in it, or the lusts of it be in common obeyed.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

2. all—The Greek implies "all without exception": even the apostles.

offend not—literally "stumbleth not": is void of offence or "slip" in word: in which respect one is especially tried who sets up to be a "teacher."

James 3:2 Additional Commentaries
Context
Taming the Tongue
1Let not many of you become teachers, my brethren, knowing that as such we will incur a stricter judgment. 2For 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. 3Now if we put the bits into the horses' mouths so that they will obey us, we direct their entire body as well.…
Cross References
2 Chronicles 6:36
"When they sin against you--for there is no one who does not sin--and you become angry with them and give them over to the enemy, who takes them captive to a land far away or near;

Psalm 39:1
For the director of music. For Jeduthun. A psalm of David. I said, "I will watch my ways and keep my tongue from sin; I will put a muzzle on my mouth while in the presence of the wicked."

Proverbs 10:19
Sin is not ended by multiplying words, but the prudent hold their tongues.

Proverbs 13:3
Those who guard their lips preserve their lives, but those who speak rashly will come to ruin.

Proverbs 21:23
Those who guard their mouths and their tongues keep themselves from calamity.

Matthew 12:34
You brood of vipers, how can you who are evil say anything good? For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.

James 1:4
Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

James 1:26
Those who consider themselves religious and yet do not keep a tight rein on their tongues deceive themselves, and their religion is worthless.

James 2:10
For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it.

1 John 1:8
If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.
Treasury of Scripture

For in many things we offend all. If any man offend not in word, the same is a perfect man, and able also to bridle the whole body.

in.

1 Kings 8:46 If they sin against you, (for there is no man that sins not,) and …

2 Chronicles 6:36 If they sin against you, (for there is no man which sins not,) and …

Proverbs 20:9 Who can say, I have made my heart clean, I am pure from my sin?

Ecclesiastes 7:20 For there is not a just man on earth, that does good, and sins not.

Isaiah 64:6 But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are …

Romans 3:10 As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:

Romans 7:21 I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me.

Galatians 3:22 But the scripture has concluded all under sin, that the promise by …

Galatians 5:17 For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the …

1 John 1:8-10 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth …

If.

James 3:5,6 Even so the tongue is a little member, and boasts great things. …

See on ch.

James 1:26 If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridles not his tongue, …

Psalm 34:13 Keep your tongue from evil, and your lips from speaking guile.

Proverbs 13:3 He that keeps his mouth keeps his life: but he that opens wide his …

1 Peter 3:10 For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his …

a perfect. See on ch.

James 1:4 But let patience have her perfect work, that you may be perfect and …

Matthew 12:37 For by your words you shall be justified, and by your words you shall …

Colossians 1:28 Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all …

Colossians 4:12 Epaphras, who is one of you, a servant of Christ, salutes you, always …

Hebrews 13:21 Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you …

1 Peter 5:10 But the God of all grace, who has called us to his eternal glory …

to bridle.

1 Corinthians 9:27 But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that …

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