What comes from your mouth?

March 19, 2019

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Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living

Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.
(Ephesians 4:29 (NIV))

Words are a powerful device. Words can be uplifting and encouraging. Words can be sad and convey despair. Words can convey affection and in the next breath, they can convey anger. We have a tendency to use words rashly and in haste. It is so easy to let the wrong words slip off of your tongue. I would venture to say that every one of us on this planet has said something today that they wish could be taken back.

Most people think of unwholesome talk as the proverbial four letter words that we all tend to know even if we hate to admit it. However, have you stopped to think about what else may be considered unwholesome?

Words said in anger or in hatred destroy instantly. Words said in frustration never make the situation any better. Words aimed directly at provoking hurt are never able to be recalled. All of these types of words can be unwholesome for they destroy. They do not build up.

Jesus rarely used words that did not build up. I can only think of a few situations that He used terms less than uplifting. I do not think that being called a brood of vipers made those people feel good about themselves. However, even when Jesus said words such as these, they were not expressed in the rage and hatred that we often use. I picture the use of these words more out of pity than out of anger.

Unwholesome talk is anything that destroys what God is trying to accomplish in and through another person. Guard your tongue, for Satan can use it to do just that. Give pause to your words. Let your tongue be guided by the Holy Spirit. He will not give you unwholesome words. He will fill your mouth with words that will be a blessing to all who hear.

What comes from your mouth?

Copyright 1998 – 2019 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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What do your words and actions show?

November 9, 2015

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth. This then is how we know that we belong to the truth, and how we set our hearts at rest in his presence whenever our hearts condemn us. For God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything.
(1 John 3:18-20 (NIV))

The old saying that actions speak louder than words is definitely true.

Words are cheap. What is in a person’s heart is what he or she will do. Our actions will show the world that we are bought by the Blood of the Lamb, not our words. Words can be deceiving, and even appear to be the truth. Satan comes disguising his words and they may appear to be truth, yet, when his actions are judged, he is the father of all lies.

Let your hearts focus on Jesus Christ and allow God to work through you by the power of the Holy Spirit, and then your actions will truly represent what is in your heart.

Copyright 1998 – 2015 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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What is in your heart?

October 13, 2014

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

“Are you still so dull?” Jesus asked them. “Don’t you see that whatever enters the mouth goes into the stomach and then out of the body? But the things that come out of the mouth come from the heart, and these make a man `unclean.’ For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, slander. These are what make a man `unclean’; but eating with unwashed hands does not make him `unclean.’ ”
(Matthew 15:16-20 (NIV))

Do you actually listen to the words that come out of your mouth?

Perhaps you are like most people. Most of us have a tendency to listen to what other people say and criticize their words instead of truly listening to what we are saying. We have a tendency to think that the words that we utter are blameless and have no wrong associated with them. Oh, if we would only listen to what we are saying!

Jesus was correct in teaching us that what comes out of the mouth makes us unclean, for it truly is a reflection of what is in our hearts. There is a saying that we should think before we speak. All too often we simply open our mouths and let out the first thoughts and words that arise. We have hoarded these thoughts and made them the treasure of our heart. Accordingly, because they are the treasure of our heart, they are the first thing on our mind and therefore the first thing out of our mouths. Is your heart’s treasure unclean? We must find a new treasure.

For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
(Matthew 6:21 (NIV))

We must bury the old treasures and replace them with the treasures that are important to God.

What is in your heart?

Copyright 1998 – 2014 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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Have you fully embraced the power of the Gospel?

October 7, 2014

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

For we know, brothers loved by God, that he has chosen you, because our gospel came to you not simply with words, but also with power, with the Holy Spirit and with deep conviction. You know how we lived among you for your sake.
(1 Thessalonians 1:4-5 (NIV))

How did the Gospel come to you?

Was it only words, or was there power behind the words? Was the Holy Spirit involved or was it just a brief discussion about someone named Jesus? Was there a personal conviction or was the mood more of a “I have nothing better to do” attitude?

Sadly, I feel that the Gospel has been watered down by today’s society, and, yes, even the Body of Christ. The early church knew the power. I know that some did not, but we read more accounts telling us that people responded because of the power of the Gospel. Do we expect power when we read the Bible? Do we expect power when we go to church? Do we expect power when we pray?

Do we embrace the Holy Spirit as a welcome part of our spiritual lives? Do we seek to be filled with the Holy Spirit? Do we, as the Body of Christ, even know what the Holy Spirit can do within us and through us?

Do we have a deep conviction? Will you stand firm in your faith no matter what the enemy may send your way? It is easy to profess a faith in Jesus when everything is going great. Some even draw closer when things start to get bad, but do you have the faith and the conviction to stay the course even if your physical life is endangered?

The Gospel is powerful. It is more than just words. It is more than just a good story. It is more than something to do with an hour or two of your life each week.

The Gospel is life. The Gospel is power. Have you fully embraced the power?

Copyright 1998 – 2014 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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What makes you unclean?

March 14, 2014

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

Again Jesus called the crowd to him and said, “Listen to me, everyone, and understand this. Nothing outside a man can make him `unclean’ by going into him. Rather, it is what comes out of a man that makes him `unclean.’ ”
(Mark 7:14-15 (NIV))

Jesus knew that what goes into a man can not change his heart. What comes out of a man is a reflection of the heart. If unclean thoughts, words or deeds come out of a man, then his heart is unclean and nothing that goes into a man can change that.

From a worldly point of view, it is true that we must wash our hands and anything that we put into our mouths, but this “dirt” does not change a person’s heart. It may make them sick for a day or two, but it will not make their heart unclean. An unclean heart comes from being around sin and not distancing yourself from that sin. An unclean heart comes from holding grudges and being angry against others. An unclean heart comes from resentment. An unclean heart does not come from what we physically put into our bodies. It comes from what we spiritually put into our hearts, and then let grow there without being removed. It then comes out through our thoughts, words and actions.

Be careful what you put into your heart, for it is what can make you “unclean.”

Copyright 1998 – 2014 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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What do you find in your words?

February 27, 2014

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

You shall not misuse the name of the LORD your God, for the LORD will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses his name.
(Exodus 20:7 (NIV))

Society has come to use many words and phrases over the course of history to mean things in various derogatory levels of expression. How many times have you heard someone say “God” and you knew that they were using this as a shorter version of a curse? How many times have you said or thought something similar to that yourself? Even these little slips are a sin because they use God’s name in vane. True, His name is not really God, but YHWH, but the sin does not lose any of its guilt due to the translation from the original language.

Listen to the words that are spoken around you during any given day. What do you hear? Listen to the words that come from your mouth. Listen to the thoughts that come from within you. Do you find yourself thinking things that are expressions that take God’s name in vane?

Day to day living makes us do things that we don’t really stop to think about. Each time that we do them, it is a sin in the eyes of God. No one can make it through a day without sinning. We all need a Savior. We all need Jesus, who was sent to take away the guilt of our sins. With sin, there is no hope and there is death. With Jesus, we know hope and there is no death.

Copyright 1998 – 2014 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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Our thoughts condemn us

January 29, 2013

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

Do not pay attention to every word people say,
or you may hear your servant cursing you–
for you know in your heart
that many times you yourself have cursed others.
(Ecclesiastes 7:21-22 (NIV))

It is human nature to think and say things under your breath. Things that you would not want anyone to even know that you knew. These are the things that are secretly holed away in your heart.

For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, slander.
(Matthew 15:19(NIV))

Perhaps it is this characteristic of humanity that lead Jesus to say:

“If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.”
(John 8:7b(NIV))

Not a single one of us is above reproach. Not a single one of us is capable of leading the perfect life that God wishes for us to live. Our thoughts condemn us. Our thoughts manifest themselves as words and deeds. Our words and deeds condemn us. Only one thing that we can do will remove the condemnation from our lives.

We must accept Jesus as our personal Lord and Savior. We must accept His righteousness in exchange for our condemnation. He willingly takes our sin upon His shoulders and gives us His grace and mercy.

We are not perfect. Even if we accept Jesus as our personal Lord and Savior, we will stumble. We will curse others in our heart and sometimes, even, under our breath. But, we have a Savior who is living within us, and teaching us that we must follow Him and not give in to that side of our nature.

Do you curse or do you accept righteous instruction?

Copyright 1998 – 2013 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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