1 Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly. 2 For we all stumble in many ways. If anyone does not stumble in words, he is a perfect man, able to control even his whole body. 3 Now if we put bits into horses' mouths for them to obey us, we can also direct their whole bodies. 4 Notice also that ships, although they are so large and are driven by strong winds, are steered by a very small rudder to wherever the pilot desires. 5 Likewise the tongue is a small body part, yet it boasts great things. Notice also how small a fire sets on fire a large forest. 6 The tongue is also a fire, a world of sinfulness set among our body parts. It stains the whole body and sets on fire the course of life. It is itself set on fire by hell. 7 For every kind of wild animal, bird, reptile, and sea creature is being tamed and has been tamed by mankind. 8 But no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison. 9 With it we praise the Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in God's likeness. 10 Out of the same mouth come blessing and cursing. My brothers, these things should not happen. 11 Does a spring pour out from its opening both sweet and bitter water? 12 Does a fig tree, my brothers, make olives? Or a grapevine, figs? Neither can salty water produce sweet water.
13 Who is wise and understanding among you? Let that person show a good life by his works in the humility of wisdom. 14 But if you have bitter jealousy and ambition in your heart, do not boast and lie against the truth. 15 This is not the wisdom that comes down from above. Instead, it is earthly, unspiritual, demonic. 16 For where there are jealousy and ambition, there is confusion and every evil practice. 17 But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peace-loving, gentle, reasonable, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere. 18 The fruit of righteousness is sown in peace among those who make peace.