Power of Words.

Read James 3:9-13.

9With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. 10Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be. 11Can both fresh water and salt water flow from the same spring? 12My brothers and sisters, can a fig tree bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Neither can a salt spring produce fresh water.
13Who is wise and understanding among you? Let them show it by their good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom.

The most powerful force in every person’s control – words. These Scriptures emphasize the importance of words. James and Matthew agree that blessing and cursing should not come from the same mouth. The Pharisees created a vast array of wordy regulations for their own form of godliness. Even today, man-made rules about how to live a Christian life (or another religious life) enslave many. It is not our right to use words to judge others maliciously. Words can cultivate or destroy relationships. We should all strive to be less negative, less wordy, and more generous. Our goals should be empathy, listening, and understanding. Conflicts start with a war of words. Jesus taught love. Our hope is to allow God to shape our perspective and guide our use of words for good.

See also Matthew 12:33-37.

33 “Make a tree good and its fruit will be good, or make a tree bad and its fruit will be bad, for a tree is recognized by its fruit. 34You brood of vipers, how can you who are evil say anything good? For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of. 35A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in him. 36But I tell you that everyone will have to give account on the day of judgment for every empty word they have spoken. 37For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned.”

© 2017 Schweitzer United Methodist Church
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