Sweet, Kind Words

Sweet, Kind Words

What do you think about people who always speak kindly, and who treat others with the respect of using kind and gracious words?  Such people are rare, but we must surely admire and respect them. 

Pleasant [gracious] words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the bones.  (Pro 16:24 NKJV, definition in brackets added)

A gentle response diverts anger, but a harsh statement incites fury.  (Pro 15:1 ISV)

A man has joy in an apt answer, and how delightful is a timely word!  (Pro 15:23 NASB)

Wholesome speech is a tree of life, but dishonest talk breaks the spirit.  (Pro 15:4 CEB)

She opens her mouth with wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.  (Pro 31:26 ESV, emphasis added)

As we can see from these Bible passages, kind and pleasant words bless all those who hear them as well as those who speak them.  Good-humored, pleasing words and conversation can bring about unexpected benefits.  Here are just some of them:

  • Joy to the soul and good health for body, soul, and spirit (Pro 16:24)
  • Turning anger away (Pro 15:1)
  • Delight (Pro 15:23)
  • Lengthens our lives and enriches them (Pro 15:4)
  • Wisdom and kindness go hand-in-hand (Pro 31:26)

It is always a source of awe-inspired wonder to me that there is such a richness and depth to the teachings of the Word of God when we take time to study them and to understand them in their fullness. 

May your life be enriched, lengthened, and blessed by the kind and pleasant words that you speak to others, and which other people speak to you.  All glory to God!

The Words of Eternal Life

The Words of Eternal Life

Who has the Words of Eternal Life?  The Word tells us,

From that time many of His disciples went back and walked with Him no more. 67 Then Jesus said to the twelve, “Do you also want to go away?”  68 But Simon Peter answered Him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. 69 Also we have come to believe and know that You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”  (Joh 6:66-69, underscoring added) 

What did Peter mean when he said that Jesus had the “words of eternal life”?  He meant that everything that Jesus taught and lived by His example would lead us into eternal life. 

Jesus came to die in order to purchase our salvation.  John 3:16 reminds us that all who believe in Jesus Christ receive eternal life.  And the Lord Jesus Himself said,

It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life.  (Joh 6:63)  Jesus’ very Words carry life!

These are deep spiritual concepts that are worth meditating upon and asking the Holy Spirit for insight into.  Here is another point of view:

“He is the way, the truth, and the life (Joh 14:6). And the aim of giving Himself as the truth to the world is freedom. You will know the truth and the truth will make you free. Free from the guilt and power of sin.  Free from deadness and blindness and judgment.” – Excerpt from John Piper teaching.

Jesus gives us freedom from “deadness,” as John Piper says above.  That’s a spiritually intense idea worth time in meditation and prayer.

Study the life and words of Jesus Christ and you will be studying the Words of Eternal Life.  God bless you.

The Beauty in this World

The Beauty in this World

He has made everything beautiful in its time.  (Ecc 3:11)  All the beauty that we see in everything is a gift from God.

Naphtali is a deer let loose; he uses beautiful words.  (Gen 49:21)  This verse compares a person to a liberated deer, and highlights the graceful and pleasant words that this person uses.  Even beautiful words (songs, poetry) are a wonderful gift from God.

And you shall take for yourselves on the first day the fruit of beautiful trees, branches of palm trees, the boughs of leafy trees, and willows of the brook; and you shall rejoice before the Lord your God for seven days.  (Lev 23:40, underscoring added)  This verse demonstrates that even the beauty in nature—the world around us—proceeds from God’s generous goodness.

These verses from the Bible (and my comments upon them) are used simply to endorse the concept and display it to you, that the beauty that we see, hear, taste, and touch in this world emanates from God’s love, generosity, and goodness.

Beautiful and successful relationships are also a gift from our loving God.  (Pro 13:20; 27:6, 9b)

We serve a good God who is full of lovingkindness and a desire to bless and to embrace us in beauty!   Hallelujah!

The Power of God

The Power of God

The Bible has quite a lot to say about the power of God.  Here are some selected verses.

. . . and declared to be the Son of God with power according to the Spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead.  (Rom 1:4)

For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek.  (Rom 1:16)

. . . but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.  (1 Cor 1:24)

And my speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words of human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, that your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the power of God.  (1 Cor 2:4-5)

For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.  (1 Cor 1:18)

I’m sure that you’ve noticed the recurring theme in these verses that Jesus is called the power of God or the verse may state that power comes through His good news.  How did Jesus access His Father’s power?  He accessed it through the Holy Spirit, for our Lord said:

But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.  (Ac 1:8)  Jesus spoke this to His disciples, and told them that they would receive power through the Holy Spirit.

Further on in the New Testament, we read:

For our gospel did not come to you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Spirit and in much assurance, as you know what kind of men we were among you for your sake.  (1 Thes 1:5)

Each believer receives power in the same way that Jesus did, through the Holy Spirit and His presence in us.  We must learn to cooperate with the Lord and the Holy Spirit through our knowledge of the Word and through our obedience to it.  As we obediently serve Him and allow Him to lead and guide us, we will move and operate in His mighty power.

A Kiss for a Right Answer!

A Kiss for a Right Answer!

But those who rebuke the wicked will have delight, and a good blessing will come upon them.  (25) He who gives a right answer kisses the lips.  (Pro 24:25-26)

This passage from the Bible has a couple of good spiritual points to make. 

  • The first recommends that we admonish those who commit evil, depraved, or heinous acts, rather than justifying or remaining neutral to what they do. Verse 24 says that that when we reprove the wicked, a blessing will come upon us.
  • The second point (v. 25 above) is shown like this in a reverse interlinear: “Every man shall kiss his lips that giveth a right answer.”  In short, this means that plain, direct words are preferable to deceptive or ambiguous ones.  And that when someone speaks plainly to us, we should appreciate and value them. 

The “right answer” spoken of here is an answer that is filled with the wisdom of God.  The more we are acquainted with the Bible and familiar with the voice of the Holy Spirit, the easier it will be to recognize and value a “right answer” when we hear it.

All the words of my mouth are with righteousness; nothing crooked or perverse is in them.  They are all plain to him who understands, and right to those who find knowledge.  10 Receive my instruction, and not silver, and knowledge rather than choice gold . . .  (Pro 8:8-10, emphasis added)

I believe that the purpose of these two verses is to help us to remember that ALL of the words of our lips are colossally important, both in the natural and spiritual realms.  Additionally, the Lord is giving us His advice on when to be critical of someone’s actions, as well as when to welcome and to be grateful for wise counsel or a useful and eye-opening insight.

By God’s empowering gift of grace, we’ll know when and how to apply this biblical wisdom.

Out of the Mouth

Out of the Mouth

Not what goes into the mouth defiles a man; but what comes out of the mouth [words], this defiles a man.  (Mt 15:11 NKJV – parenthesized word added)

But those things which proceed out of the mouth come from the heart, and they defile a man. (Mt 15:18)

If anyone defiles the temple of God, God will destroy him. For the temple of God is holy, which temple you are. (1 Cor 3:17)

The definition of defile is:  spoil, sully, impair, debase, or degrade; to desecrate or profane something sacred.  The words that come out of our mouths are capable of defiling us!

From the verses quoted above, we understand that our words can displease God, because we are His holy, sacred temple.  He never wants us to speak words which would degrade us.  Words are the heart’s reaction or response to people or circumstances.  He wants us to respond to all things as He would—with love and mercy.

Jesus is our example in all things.  (1 Pet 2:21-24; Jo 13:13-16)  He has called us to follow Him, as He leads and shepherds us. 

A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is good . . .  (Lk 6:45a KJV)  Let us encourage ourselves to speak forth only words which are good and edifying—which bring glory to God and blessings to mankind.

The Treasure of Our Tongue

The Treasure of Our Tongue

There is a fairly well-known book titled The Treasure of Our Tongue authored by Lincoln Barnett, published in 1962.  This is the story of the English language from its obscure beginnings to its present eminence as the most widely spoken language, and it’s a very interesting book.

We, as believers, have another—even better—Treasure of Our Tongue

For the ear tests words as the tongue tastes food.  (Job 34:3, emphasis added)

My tongue will proclaim your righteousness, your praises all day long.  (Ps 35:28)

The mouths of the righteous utter wisdom, and their tongues speak what is just.  (Ps 37:30)

I will bless the Lord at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth.  (Ps 34:1)

He has put a new song in my mouth—praise to our God; many will see it and fear, and will trust in the Lord.  (Ps 40:3)

Hear my prayer, O God; give ear to the words of my mouth.  (Ps 54:2)

I cried to Him with my mouth, and He was extolled with my tongue.  (Ps 66:17)

My mouth shall tell of Your righteousness and Your salvation all the day, for I do not know their limits.  (Ps 71:15)

Whoever guards his mouth and tongue keeps his soul from troubles.  (Pro 21:23)

The treasure of our tongue, from these verses in the Bible, is our ability to praise God daily, and to speak of His righteousness not only to other people, but to ourselves!  Test the words of your mouth and determine if they edify others or put them in a negative frame of mind.  Proverbs 21:23 reminds us that when we guard our words, we keep ourselves out of trouble!

We have been given a new song, a song of praise, since our rebirth into God’s family.  The author of Psalm 54:2 invites the Lord to pay attention to the words that he speaks!  You must be very sure of yourself before you invite the Lord to pay attention to your words. You words would be full of praise and would speak forth the wisdom of God.

Psalm 71:15 states that the psalmist does not know the limits of God’s righteousness or His salvation.  What a positive, faith-filled declaration!  Let us join with the psalmist in lifting our voices in praise to God, and in glorifying His righteousness and his salvation.  This is an honor and a treasure that we believers have been given, so let us exercise it.  

It’s Time to Reason With God

It’s Time to Reason With God

Do you have a need in your life?  Then, it’s time to reason with God!

I, even I, am He who blots out your transgressions for My own sake; and I will not remember your sins.  Put Me in remembrance; let us contend together; state your case, that you may be acquitted.  [justified] – Isaiah 43:25, 26 NKJV, bracketed word added

The Lord wants us to “put Him in remembrance” and to reason with Him (Isa. 1:18) and to state our case for receiving the blessings of salvation.  Forgiveness and justification have been provided to us through Jesus, our Savior.  All of the blessings of salvation are ours through Jesus Christ. 

Take words with you, and return to the Lord; say to Him, “Take away all iniquity; receive us graciously, for we will offer the sacrifices of our lips.” – Hosea 14:2 NKJV

We are to take words with us to the Lord—His own words!  He also desires that we offer the sacrifices of our lips (our praise) to Him.  (Heb. 15:15)  He is pleased when we trust in His Word, obey it, and rely upon it.

And I have put My words in your mouth; I have covered you with the shadow of My hand.  – Isaiah 51:16a, b NKJV

Here the Lord says He has put His words in our mouths, and has covered us with the shadow of His hand.  As we remind Him of His Word, and tell Him that we know it’s true and that we’re relying upon it, He takes pleasure in our faith and our hope in Him.  As we speak God’s own words by faith, He provides all that we need in every area; and He protects us under His sheltering hand. Glory to God!