Acts 20:32 - “And now, brethren, I commend (commit, entrust) you to God, and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up (edify), and to give you an inheritance among all them which are sanctified.” Last week we examined how grace provokes spiritual labor. We saw that: 1. Jesus knows our labor. 2. Spiritual labor is a mark of a disciple of Christ. 3. We will be rewarded for our spiritual labor. This week, we will examine grace as it pertains to speech. This is very, very important; and I do not think most of us Christians take it near seriously enough! Let’s get into God’s Word!
Grace should be on our lips. Let us look at two Scriptures: Col 4:6 - “Let your speech (words) be always (at all times) with grace (gracious, with gratitude, & pertaining to the loving-kindness, goodwill, and unmerited favor of God), seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer (speak and respond to) every man.
Eph 4:29-30 Let no corrupt (rotten, worthless) communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good (beneficial) to the use of edifying (building up), that it may minister (give) grace unto the hearers. And grieve not (to distress, make sad or sorrowful) the Holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.
These are powerful statements. Let your words be at ALL TIMES with grace? Let NO rotten, worthless communication come out of your mouth? While we make many exceptions, the Word doesn’t. Dake said on Col 4:6 “Let your speech be…. worthy of being kept in the memory of others.” Wommack said, “We should always speak gracious words that would make others want what we have… . We should season them with salt and make the people want to drink the living water that only Jesus can give.”
Wommack also said on Eph 4:29 - “…. Gossip, slander, and jesting that is not appropriate would be included also. Certainly, griping and complaining would not be considered speech that would encourage others either. All of our speech is supposed to edify and encourage others in the goodness of God. If some Christians would take this verse to heart, they would have to develop a whole new vocabulary. Profanity is obviously wrong, but many Christians think gossip, criticism, and complaining are God-given rights. That’s not what Paul promoted here.”
We CANNOT escape Prov. 18:20-21! Our belly WILL be filled with what has come OUT of our mouth! Death and life - stop and think about this - is in the strength of our tongue, the power of our words! If you have sown (spoken) words of life, then you will reap blessing. If you have sown words of death, then you will reap cursing. You cannot sow death, and expect to reap life. You cannot sow cursing, and expect to reap blessings!
We CANNOT escape the fact that our tongue guides our life! Read James 3:1-12 carefully. Our tongue leads us around like a bit in a horse’s mouth. It steers our life, like a rudder moves a ship in a different direction. It is a little spark that can ignite a wild fire! Only a tongue yielded to the Holy Spirit can be tamed!
Still not convinced of the importance of your words? Let’s read James 1:26 - “If any man among you seem to be religious, and does not bridle his tongue, but deceives his own heart, this man’s religion is vain (worthless).” Are you having troubles? Keep your mouth and tongue (Prov 21:23). Are you having destruction in your life? Keep your mouth and keep your life (Prv 13:3). Don’t be rash with your mouth… let your words be few… don’t allow your mouth to cause you to sin (Ecc 5:2, 6).
At the Judgment Seat of Christ, we will give an account for every idle word we have spoken (Mt. 12:36-37)! This is a sobering fact. Like piles of wood, hay, & stubble will our idle words be burning all around us! By God’s grace alone are we saved! Praise Him for His mercy!
What if God whispered to you after every statement you make, “As you have spoken in my ears, I will do it unto you”. Would you change the way you speak? In Numbers 13&14, ten of the twelve spies spoke death, and death is what God gave them. Two of the spies spoke life (Joshua & Caleb), and life is what He gave them. As they spoke in His ears, He did unto them (Nu 14:28). Don’t think you will escape the power of your tongue. Words are seeds sown. We can yield our tongue to The Spirit, and reap life; or to the flesh, and reap death.
Prov 29:11 - “A fool utters all his mind: but a wise man keeps it in till afterwards.” Until you get into God’s word and learn His vocabulary, you are better off saying nothing. Let the thought die, and don’t give life to it by meditating on it and speaking it forth. Through the power of the Holy Spirit, bring your heart, thoughts, and mouth into alignment with God’s Word - and then reap the blessings and benefits He brings! Until next time, rejoice in the Lord!