1 My brethren, be not every man a master; Remembering how that we shall receive the more damnation. 2 For in many things we sin all. If a man sin not in word, the same is a perfect man and able to tame all the body.
3 Behold, we put bits into the horses' mouths that they should obey us, and we turn about all the body. 4 Behold also the ships, which though they be so great, and are driven of fierce winds, yet are they turned about with a very small helm, whithersoever the violence of the governor will: 5 even so the tongue is little member and boasteth great things. Behold how great a thing a little fire kindleth, 6 and the tongue is fire, and a world of wickedness. So is the tongue set among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth afire all that we have of nature, and is itself set afire, even of hell.
7 All the natures of beasts, and of birds, and of serpents, and things of the sea, are meeked and tamed of the nature of man. 8 But the tongue can no man tame. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. 9 Therewith bless we God the father, and therewith curse we men which are made after the similitude of God. 10 Out of one mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be. 11 Doth a fountain send forth at one place sweet water, and bitter also? 12 Can the fig tree, my brethren, bear olive berries: or a vine bear figs? So can no fountain give both salt water and fresh also.
13 If any man be wise and endued with learning among you, let him show the works of his good conversation in meekness that is coupled with wisdom. 14 But if ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, rejoice not: neither be liars against the truth. 15 This wisdom descendeth not from above: but is earthy, and natural, and devilish. 16 For where envying and strife is, there is unstableness, and all manner of evil works: 17 but the wisdom that is from above, is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be entreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without judging, and without simulation. 18 Yea, and the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace, of them that maintain peace.