According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the longest fangs found on any snake belonged to a Gaboon viper of tropical Africa. The six-foot-long specimen’s fangs measured 1.96 inches. The Gaboon viper is, as one would expect, deadly poisonous and known to commit suicide by biting itself. A Gaboon viper belonging to the Philadelphia Zoological Gardens was found dead with its fangs deeply embedded in its own back. What nature had provided the reptile for its protection was used by it to destroy itself. I’d say the ol’ boy didn’t appreciate the lethal quality of his own mouth!
Most of us know some people like that; they may not have two-inch fangs, but they have tongues that are “full of deadly poison”. With their mouths they bless God and with the same mouths, they curse men. That is a terrible inconsistency, and James says that such should not be so. In observing such people though, I’m pretty well convinced they, like the Gaboon viper, are just not aware of the lethal qualities of their own mouths.
Do you suppose that the bitter envying and strife in people’s hearts – the poison which causes
them to strike out at others – could at times turn inward and destroy one’s own self? There’s no
doubt about it, many a person with a lethal mouth, like the Gaboon viper, has struck out at others
and in so doing had bitten himself.