Series: Authentic Faith
June 05, 2022
"There are three ways to ultimate success: The first way is to be kind. The second way is to be kind. The third way is to be kind." – Fred Rogers ---------- Just a cursory look at the world in which we live gives a picture that looks very little like the kindness that Mr. Rogers encouraged his viewers to strive for as a measure of success. But what about the church? Shouldn't the family of God be a place where kindness and compassion and understanding are in abundance? ---------- The simple answer is: of course it should be. Yet, in the third chapter of James, the writer felt compelled to urge believers to be careful about the way they use their tongues; the damage words can cause. Magnify that truth by ten-fold when we consider the damage that can be done with the "virtual tongue" of social media, text messaging, and email. Having the figurative barrier of digital distance often emboldens people to show even less kindness toward others because of a false sense of safety and security.
Matthew 15:18-19, But what comes out of the mouth proceeds from the heart, and this defiles a person. For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false witness, slander.
Big Idea: My tongue speaks what is truly in my heart….
And has the potential to do both good and harm.
(Journal) James 3:1-2a
1. I am to be under the control of the Holy Spirit…. That includes my words.
(Journal) James 3:2b-5a
Psalm 39:1, I said, “I will guard my ways, that I may not sin with my tongue; I will guard my mouth with a muzzle, so long as the wicked are in my presence.”
2. I am to have a tendency to help not hurt…. That includes my words.
(Journal) James 3:5b-6
Proverbs 26:20-21, For lack of wood the fire goes out, and where there is no whisperer, quarreling ceases. As charcoal to hot embers and wood to fire, so is a quarrelsome man for kindling strife.
3. I am to submit to God in all thing…. That includes my words.
(Journal) James 3:7-8
Psalm 141:3-4, Set a guard, O LORD, over my mouth; keep watch over the door of my lips! Do not let my heart incline to any evil, to busy myself with wicked deeds
(Journal) James 3:9-12
Psalm 35:28, Then my tongue shall tell of Your righteousness and of Your praise all the day long.
Next Step: I will continue to be transformed into the image of Jesus….
That includes my words.
Colossians 3:15-17, And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. Let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.
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