A Desperate Judge

We all have times when we’ve said things we regret. Usually, these things appear as threats or promises that we can’t or won’t follow through on. The Scriptures are full of warnings about our words. We received a reminder of two of those passages in our recent Bible conference. The end of Ephesians 4 provides a warning from Paul to weigh our words. James reminds us in James 3 of the dangerous power of the tongue. So what does it take for us to avoid saying things we regret or shouldn’t have said in the first place? Both James and Paul provide divine teaching that will transform our tongues. However, the foundation of this change must come first. We’ll never have a transformed tongue without a heart change. Jesus Himself taught that the mouth speaks out of that which fills the heart (Mt 12:34; Lk 6:45). Without the indwelling Holy Spirit, we’ll never see our tongues reigned in. He comes to us at the moment of salvation and moves us toward righteousness, even in our words. The Spirit’s presence makes it possible to follow Paul’s and James’s teachings on the tongue. Paul encourages a transformed tongue through a renewed mind (Eph 4:23) and the imitation of God (Eph 5:1). As we think differently, we’ll act differently, and we’ll see an end to unwholesome words and growth in words of grace (Eph 4:29). James highlights a similar need, the wisdom of God (Jms 3:13-18). When the wisdom of God, which comes from His Word, controls us, we’ll see our tongues tamed. Instead of speaking in envy, ambition, and pride, we’ll see more peace, mercy, reasonability, and truth from our mouths. In Judges 10-11 Jephthah speaks with a mix of wisdom and foolishness. His wisdom brings him influence and victory for Israel. But His foolishness ends in death. Our only hope in avoiding a similar rollercoaster is to submit to the wisdom of God by the Spirit of God. The power of God’s wisdom and His grace will provide a guard for our tongues. With His help, we are sure to see fewer words we regret and more words we cherish. And that means fewer destructive words of foolishness and more life-giving words of wisdom. –Pastor Rory

Sunday at Liberty

9AM: Artaxerxes Stops the Work–Ezra 4:17-24

10AM: Pastor Rory–A Desperate Judge–Judges 10-12 (sermon notes)

6PM: Evening Gathering at Bailey’s House–Wisdom from Above–James 3:13-18

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