“Alexander the coppersmith did me much harm; the Lord will repay him according to his deeds. Be on guard against him yourself, for he vigorously opposed our teaching” (2 Timothy 4:14-15, NASB).
Most modern readers of the New Testament are interested in heroic characters, or in the study of God, Christ, the Holy Spirit, and the Church – in short we focus on positive things which lift us up. Yet we recognize that the Biblical writers also tell of less wholesome things and people, those whom we might call “villains.” Continue reading “Villains”
For everything there is an appointed time, and an appropriate time for every activity on earth…a time to keep silent, and a time to speak (Ecclesiastes 3:1,7 NET).
There is just so much noise. Twenty-four-hour news channels, talk radio, and social media provide a ceaseless surge of sound. Unfortunate news is twisted, amplified, and replayed into an unremitting feedback loop. To add to the noise seems almost like pouring a cup of water into the Pacific. I long for silence.
In the midst of all that noise, there are moments of deafening silence. There are occasions when voices must rise and cut through the clamor, speaking with clarity, conviction, and compassion.
When should we speak and when should we be silent? Continue reading “The sacrifice of silence”
“For every kind of animal, bird, reptile, and sea creature is subdued and has been subdued by humankind. But no human being can subdue the tongue; it is a restless evil, full of deadly poison. With it we bless the Lord and Father, and with it we curse people made in God’s image. From the same mouth come blessing and cursing. These things should not be so, my brothers and sisters. A spring does not pour out fresh water and bitter water from the same opening, does it? Can a fig tree produce olives, my brothers and sisters, or a vine produce figs? Neither can a salt water spring produce fresh water” (James 3:7-12 NET).
Of all the wild animals in the world, the one that is the most difficult to tame and control is…our tongue! Not that our tongue is really a wild animal, but every animal we can think of we have learned in some way to subdue and control. Continue reading “Watch what you say!”
Words radiate power. Divine words emanate limitless power. God spoke creation into existence. Scripture transforms, motivates, and equips. His words are words of human comprehension that engage the human mind and soul. Jesus has “the words of eternal life” John 6.68.
The popular notion that words mean nothing is bunk. Human words also effect great consequences. The reason words multiply today is not only because more means are available, but because, down deep, people know the power of words and want to exercise that power. Continue reading “Careful! Human words radiate power”
We need to learn to live with others in harmony since social interaction is impossible to ignore.
Since we won’t get along perfectly with everyone (Romans 12:18), we must choose what to say rather than spitting out every thought that enters our minds. God will deal with our thoughts but no one else has to know all of them (1 Corinthians 3:20). Continue reading “Mouth filters”
Make your words have grace rather than venom Continue reading Little snakes
We represent Christ when we speak… Continue reading Evangelistic talk
Amazing how people’s words don’t match reality! Continue reading Are you sure?
In many cases, words need not be spoken at all. Continue reading Mum's the word!
Tell someone “You’re the bee’s knees” and you may get a blank stare. “Bee’s knees?” they might respond. “What in the world are you talking about?” Continue reading When Words Lose Their Meaning