Friday, May 29, 2020

Being Careful of Our Words

“But I say to you that for every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment.” Matthew 12:36 

Jesus spoke plainly about our idle words, yet His warning often goes unheeded. Jesus said that for every idle word there will be a time of accounting in the day of judgment. We would expect Jesus to condemn profane and vile uses of the tongue, but idle words? Idle words are things we say carelessly, without concern for their impact on others. We too quickly assume that the sins of our tongue are minor sins, sins that God will overlook. Yet Jesus was fully aware of the devastating nature of our words, for the idle words that come from our mouths give a lucid picture of the condition of our heart (Matt. 15:17–20). The Book of Proverbs encourages us to speak less rather than risk saying something offensive (Prov. 17:28). Often when we have nothing significant to say we are tempted to speak injurious, idle words. The more time we spend in idle chatter, the greater the likelihood that we will say things that are harmful. James cautioned believers to be “swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath” (James 1:19). We are in much less danger of saying something offensive when we are listening than when we are speaking! Think carefully about the words that come from your mouth. Christians should speak only words that uplift and bring grace to others (Eph. 4:29). Do you need to speak less? Do you need to be more careful about the kind of humor you use? Ask the Holy Spirit to help you evaluate whether your words build up others or whether they destroy and hurt others. - Blackaby Experiencing God Day by Day 

"Oh, that was just a slip of the tongue."
"Oh, I was just angry, I didn't mean it."
There's many ways we say it to excuse our behavior.  Mankind has always sought after weapons of any kind to further dominance and turn opportunity into power.  Yet from the smallest to the greatest words are always there with the potential to do harm. 

We as Christians aren't any better than unbelievers in how harsh our words can be. We think that asking forgiveness after the fact excuses it. Or we quickly dismiss the Spirit when He let's us know that was wrong.  If the Word of God is sharper than any two edged sword, able to separate to the division of soul and Spirit, then consider the power in words. 

Our lives are spent with other people.  Satan wants people to live his way, desensitized to the impact of words. 
The Bible, in Proverbs and other places tells us otherwise.  To be sensitive to what we say and how we say it, and even if it should be said at all.  

In the New Testament we read about the connection to anger.  Not letting the sun go down on it. To not give the Devil an opportunity.  Anger can produce seeds of many kinds and none of those entangling vines are any good.  We cannot control anger. Words can be weilded as a sword in a moment's notice. Once spoken cannot be taken back.  

I have much regret in life of words spoken both in anger and not in anger.  The reality is the truth...I know that I have ruined lives by my words.  I read in the Bible where people exercised bad judgment and their words ruined lives. I cannot retract my words.  I have no doubt that I grieved the Holy Spirit by my actions.  I caused Him to alter lives to fix what I did without consideration of what my words have done.  

Think before you speak.  We have probably all heard that.  It finds its roots in the book of Proverbs.  

What we speak in anger or just spoken out of haste or selfishness alone can cause decades worth of problems for yourself and others.  Decades. Maybe even a lifetime.  I know of people who didn't forget what people did until they died.  They could forgive, they said, but would never forget.  

As Christians yes we are forgiven when we ask for it.  But worldly reality is there are always consequences. 

We will give an account of every careless word.  Even our thoughts that we spoke to ourselves.  

Our grumbling. Our complaining.  If it wasn't righteous in nature is against us.

Think about that.  The only acceptable anger is righteous anger and that is of God, not us.  Only God is capable of discerning the real truth in any situation. 
To be angry by what angers God is a touchy subject.  Because we lack the holiness to manage the full effect. 

We are told to be quick to hear and slow to speak.  God gave us two ears and one mouth.  Two ears wasn't because He liked stereo.   Taking time to understand before you speak eliminates mistakes and misinterpretation. 

We don't realize that this high speed world we live in is intentionally that way on purpose.  It's not our society is improving. It's the way Satan wants it to be in order to make it harder for us to slow down and obey Christ. Look at what the Scriptures say about doing things without thinking. 

Thinking is muddled up by haste.  We hurt people either intentionally or unintentionally.  "Our rights" is the most overused phrase today.  

We who are of Christ are not of this world. Our rights begin and end at the Cross.  Our home is in Heaven. Our land is in Heaven. Our King is in Heaven.  Our rights are based on our citizenship. 

My heart is heavy at times when I remember the lives that I ruined in my haste and in my selfishness.  I pray for those who I remember wronging. 

Consider your words carefully.  Pray for your tongue.  Pray for those around you.  It may be the only prayer offered over them.

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