Question 464

By: Robert Serreyn

Question? James 3:6, Tell me what “It is set on fire of hell” means?

James 3:6 And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of hell.


James is speaking of the tongue or the words that we use – (Gr. GLOSSA = Language) and as V6 says it is a FIRE.

Fire can be used in one of two ways

#1 – To cause damage.


#2 – To protect.

Our words (Tongue) can be used in the same way and the following application can be applied.

– To Cause Damage:

Verbal – Through gossip, lies, and half truths.

Spiritual – Through False Doctrines and False Gospel messages.

Fire DESTROYES whatever it comes in contact with and OUR TONGUE (words) have the SAME EFFECT, through gossip, lies, and half truths a person’s reputation CAN BE destroyed and WORSE YET a person can be taught False Doctrine and be convinced by a False Gospel that will seal their ETERNAL DESTINY to hell.

To Protect:

In the early pioneer days settlers would in order to protect themselves, their Livestock, and Property from Prairie fires they would set fire to the grass around them and then AFTER it had burned up they then would move or place everything in that Burned Out place and as the fire drew closer it would go around PROTECTING THEM.

Our words are no different they can be used to Build Up a person just as easily they can be used to destroy them and we can also use our mouth to lead someone to Jesus Christ with the Right Gospel message (Acts 16:31, John 3:16, 1 Corinthians 15:1-4), in other words PROTECTING THEM from hell for eternity.

Acts 16:31
And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.

John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

1 Corinthians 15:1-4 Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; (2) By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. (3) For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; (4) And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures.

The Lord Jesus TOOK the Fire of God’s Judgement upon himself when he went to the Hell of the Cross to pay for every person’s sins.

2 Corinthians 5:21 For he hath (God) made him (Jesus Christ) to be sin for us (took God’s Judgement and paid our sins), who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness (to be declared Perfect and without sin) of God in him (Jesus Christ).

2 Thessaloinians 1:8 declares…

In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.

The word OBEY means TO NOT BELIEVE and this is what a person that DOES NOT believe that Jesus Christ went to the cross and shed his blood to Die, was Buried, and three days later Resurrected from the dead as the ONLY PAYMENT for their sins has to look foward to.

In Conclusion:

Some have suggested that the word “HELL” in V6 is not properly translated here but the Greek word is GEHENNA and it means EVERLASTING PUNISHMENT and it WILL BE in hell if the WRONG Gospel message is believed.

The tongue can be a blessing (lead someone to Christ) or a Curse (lead someone to hell).

In Proverbs 12:18 the scriptures state…

There is that speaketh like the piercings of a sword (lead to hell): but the tongue of the wise is health (lead to Christ).

“It is set on fire of hell” simply means IF USED for teaching False Doctrine and a False Gospel if believed WILL SEND a person eternally to a place called hell.

The MOST IMPORTANT thing to know IS Jesus Christ as savior, just simply believe that Jesus Christ went to the cross and DIED and shed his blood, was BURIED and three days later RESURRECTED from the dead to pay for your sins.

The moment that you do YOU HAVE (at that second and forever) Everlasting Life which WILL NEVER be taken away no matter what.

-Christ DIED for you – Romans 5:8

-Christ PAID your sins in full – 2 Corinthians 5:21,1 Peter 2:24

-BELIEVE (Trust In Completely) in Christ ALONE as the complete payment of sin for salvation – John 3:16, Acts 16:31, Ephesians 2:8,9

“For the wages(payment) of sin is death (eternal torment in hell); but the GIFT(salvation) of God is eternal life THROUGH Jesus Christ our Lord”. Romans 6:23