“Here, take this back to your king to show him what we think of his smugglers.” Those were the words that Captain Robert Jenkins heard out of his one ear as blood was still dripping after Fandino Julio Leon had cut off the other. Captain Jenkins was an English merchant aboard a ship off the coast of Florida as Leon was part of the Spanish coast guard. In 1738, Jenkins stood before the British Parliament and shared these words while still holding his ear in his hand and war against Spain was declared immediately.
James 3 tells us that, “Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark.” As a book of very practical theology for the early church, James once again returns to the destructive power of the tongue and the necessity to guard our heart from our tongue. Wars are waged over the words spoken, and the cost is measured in hearts and lives lost.