Tongue Talk: the Power of Words

Posted: January 11, 2018 in Uncategorized
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DEATH AND LIFE ARE IN THE POWER OF YOUR TONGUE, says the old Proverb (18:21). Are you using your words to build up or tear down? Tongue

I’m preaching on Colossians 3:1-17 at two different services this week. Clearly, one of Paul’s concerns is how people are using their words. He issues an imperative to the good folks of Colossi about their misuse of their words: “You must get rid of  . . . abusive language from your mouth. Do not lie to one another” (Col 3:8). It makes you sort of wonder what was going on in his church doesn’t it?

Jesus said something similar but even more direct: “It is not what goes into the mouth that defiles a person, but it is what comes out of the mouth that defiles” (Matthew 15:11). What comes out of our mouths, after all, originates in our hearts.

Paul shows the church at Colossi and us a way to get our hearts right. It’s a kind of first century version of behavior modification – change the behavior and the heart will follow. First, he reminds us of who we truly are, not children of this world but God’s “holy and beloved” (Col 3:12). Then Paul issues this beautiful new directive:

“Clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience. Bear with one another and, if anyone has a complaint against another, forgive each other; just as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in the one body. And be thankful” (Col 3:12-15).

Use your words thoughtfully, use your words lovingly, and you’ll have the power to use your words for good. And may the peace of Christ rule in your heart today and forever!

With love, Mark.

BONUS: For Small Group, Sunday School and Youth Group Leaders, Self Study or Family dinner table reflections, check out this helpful 2 minute video: the Power of Words (part 1 and 2).

  1. Bonnie Thompson says:

    Great message on words!!

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