May 1, 2015

Words Not To Be Taken Lightly

I offer a few thoughts on speaking and speech. 

In my mind, as a person called to defend the Christian Faith, there is no distinction between debate and combat. So in a way...ministry is quite like a military. At least for the Christian set on fulfilling the command to "go and do likewise" as Jesus told us to do in the Great Commission. (Matthew 28:18-20). It is therefore not ironic that the Great Commission is couched in a military terminology like "commission" which is the authority given to someone to act on behalf of another to fulfill a duty. So there is a battle at hand and Jesus gave us the perfect tool to overcome our enemies. He gave us the truth of Himself.

Matthew 28:18-20 ~ " And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations,baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold,I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

Our most probable reward or reaction for doing what we've been commissioned to do will be pitted resistance from even those closest to us in an attempt to silence our speech. The Devil absolutely loves cowardly and silent Christians. Speech aligned to Scripture will certainly make you unpopular with the system of the world and will put you right in the cross hairs of the spiritually demonic

Luke 12:51-53 ~ “Do you suppose that I came to grant peace on earth? I tell you, no, but rather division; for from now on five members in one household will be divided, three against two and two against three. “They will be divided, father against son and son against father, mother against daughter and daughter against mother, mother-in-law against daughter-in-law and daughter-in-law against mother-in-law.”

That is why a man of The Word or the Gospel wages battle against the unseen powers and principalities of this world with words and ideas which are themselves immaterial but backed and bolstered with the spiritual power of God Himself.

Ephesians 6:12 ~ “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.”

These words describe God and tell true stories that have their basis in history, with real people and with God Himself. Did it ever occur to people that God chose to bestow the gift of salvation and its knowledge to men through words…to those that would hear those words and believe? All that exists, exists by the power of God’s word.

Hebrews 1:3 ~ “The Son is the radiance of God's glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word.”

Language is intrinsic to our very being. There is no difference in the human ideas and God’s word when merged at the junction point of the Bible. This is why we are told to hold tight to the truths of Scripture. Words comes as naturally to humanity as breathing or speaking and this I believe is quite intentional because God chose and planned to use this medium since time immemorial as the vehicle to redeem humanity. The same vehicle by which Satan would seek to derail it.

Genesis 3:1 ~ “Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?”

Romans 10:17 ~ “So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.”

We see in the Bible that God granted humanity the ability to speak not so much because he wanted to hear us talk. He did so, so that we would speak the truth of Him. To speak the truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. What other reason would humanity need a mouth for to communicate?

1 Peter 3:15 ~ “But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect…”

1 Peter 4:11 ~ “If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.

Yes, speech is very godlike in its action and behavior. We even see the speaking in tongues to God in the New Testament. Like everything though that the Lord has created, it can be misappropriate and misused. That is why we are told to keep our tongues in check and be constantly vigilant of what we say.

Proverbs 4:24 ~ “Put away from you a deceitful mouth And put devious speech far from you.”

Ephesians 4:29-31 ~ “Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification according to the need of the moment, so that it will give grace to those who hear. Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice.”

We are instead exhorted to speak the things of God even when we just don't feel like it.

2 Timothy 4:1-4 ~ " I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom: preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching. For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths.

If we do not watch what we say we can easily switch from being a messenger of God to that of the Devil. The dividing line between the two is the truth and the truth can only be discerned by measuring it against God’s written word in Scripture. Words that are not truth are false teaching.

2 Peter 2:1-3 ~ “But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction. And many will follow their sensuality, and because of them the way of truth will be blasphemed. And in their greed they will exploit you with false words. Their condemnation from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep.

We are told that many will depart from the faith because of deceptive speech and lies.

1 Timothy 4:1-2 Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons, through the insincerity of liars whose consciences are seared...

In the end words were created by God for his own purposes. Words are spiritual because they are the primary chosen medium of God for man. They are used to communicate with other men to bring them to the Faith and they are used to communicate to God. Unfortunately, as I said, words can be horribly misused.

Therefore, His words should not be taken lightly, nor should words spoken to Him. 

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