New American Standard Bible
But no one can tame the tongue; it is a restless evil and full of deadly poison.
King James Bible
But the tongue can no man tame; it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison.
Darby Bible Translation
but the tongue can no one among men tame; it is an unsettled evil, full of death-bringing poison.
World English Bible
But nobody can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.
Young's Literal Translation
and the tongue no one of men is able to subdue, it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison,
James 3:8 Parallel
CommentaryBarnes' Notes on the Bible
But the tongue can no man tame - This does not mean that it is never brought under control, but that it is impossible effectually and certainly to subdue it. It would be possible to subdue and domesticate any kind of beasts, but this could not be done with the tongue.
It is an unruly evil - An evil without restraint, to which no certain and effectual check can be applied. Of the truth of this no one can have any doubt, who looks at the condition of the world.
Full of deadly poison - That is, it acts on the happiness of man, and on the peace of society, as poison does on the human frame. The allusion here seems to be to the bite of a venomous reptile. Compare Psalm 140:3, "They have sharpened their tongues like serpent; adders" poison is under their lips." Romans 3:13, "with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips." Nothing would better describe the mischief that may be done by the tongue. There is no sting of a serpent that does so much evil in the world; there is no poison more deadly to the frame than the poison of the tongue is to the happiness of man. Who, for example, can stand before the power of the slanderer? What mischief can be done in society that can be compared with that which he may do?
- 'Tis slander;
Whose edge is sharper than the sword; whose tongue
Outvenoms all the worms of Nile; whose breath
Rides on the posting winds, and doth belie
All corners of the world: kings, queens, and states,
Maids, matrons, nay, the secrets of the grave
This viperous slander enters.
Shakespeare in Cymbellna.
LibraryHow to Make Use of Christ for Taking the Guilt of Our Daily Out-Breakings Away.
The next part of our sanctification is in reference to our daily failings and transgressions, committed partly through the violence of temptations, as we see in David and Peter, and other eminent men of God; partly through daily infirmities, because of our weakness and imperfections; for, "in many things we offend all," James iii. 2; and, "if we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us," 1 John i. 8; "a righteous man falleth seven times," Prov. xxiv. 16; "there is not …
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Of the Weight of Government; and that all Manner of Adversity is to be Despised, and Prosperity Feared.
They sharpen their tongues as a serpent; Poison of a viper is under their lips. Selah.
He who has a crooked mind finds no good, And he who is perverted in his language falls into evil.
If the serpent bites before being charmed, there is no profit for the charmer.
"THEIR THROAT IS AN OPEN GRAVE, WITH THEIR TONGUES THEY KEEP DECEIVING," "THE POISON OF ASPS IS UNDER THEIR LIPS";
For every species of beasts and birds, of reptiles and creatures of the sea, is tamed and has been tamed by the human race.
Jump to PreviousAble Controlled Deadly Death Evil Full Human Mischief Nobody Poison Restless Subdue Tame Tongue Unresting Unruly Unsettled
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