3:5 So too the tongue is a small part of the body, 1 yet it has great pretensions. 2 Think 3 how small a flame sets a huge forest ablaze. 3:6 And the tongue is a fire! The tongue represents 4 the world of wrongdoing among the parts of our bodies. It 5 pollutes the entire body and sets fire to the course of human existence – and is set on fire by hell. 6
3:7 For every kind of animal, bird, reptile, and sea creature 7 is subdued and has been subdued by humankind. 8 3:8 But no human being can subdue the tongue; it is a restless 9 evil, full of deadly poison. 3:9 With it we bless the Lord 10 and Father, and with it we curse people 11 made in God’s image.
1 tn Grk “a small member.”
2 tn Grk “boasts of great things.”
3 tn Grk “Behold.”
4 tn Grk “makes itself,” “is made.”
5 tn Because of the length and complexity of the Greek sentence, a new sentence was started here in the translation.
6 sn The word translated hell is “Gehenna” (γέεννα, geenna), a Greek transliteration of the Hebrew words ge hinnom (“Valley of Hinnom”). This was the valley along the south side of Jerusalem. In OT times it was used for human sacrifices to the pagan god Molech (cf. Jer 7:31; 19:5-6; 32:35), and it came to be used as a place where human excrement and rubbish were disposed of and burned. In the intertestamental period, it came to be used symbolically as the place of divine punishment (cf. 1 En. 27:2, 90:26; 4 Ezra 7:36).
7 tn Grk (plurals), “every kind of animals and birds, of reptiles and sea creatures.”
8 tn Grk “the human species.”
9 tc Most
10 tc Most later
11 tn Grk “men”; but here ἀνθρώπους (anqrwpous) has generic force, referring to both men and women.