Proverbs 15:1-4 ESV
A soft answer turns away wrath,
but a harsh word stirs up anger.
The tongue of the wise commends knowledge,
but the mouths of fools pour out folly.
The eyes of the Lord are in every place,
keeping watch on the evil and the good.
A gentle tongue is a tree of life,
but perverseness in it breaks the spirit.
What we say matters. How we say it also matters. Yet, I would venture to say that not one of us is perfect in everything we say all the time. But, we are wise if we are able to bring our tongues under control and to make our tongues obedient to Christ. But, first our hearts need to be in submission to Christ, for it is out of our hearts that our mouths speak. For, our mouths are great revealers of what is stored up in our hearts.
For, if our hearts are full of pride, envy, unforgiveness, bitterness, rage, malice, the lust of the flesh, and immorality, etc., this is what is going to come out of our mouths in one way or another. It may come out through perverse, angry, prideful, spiteful and bitter speaking, or it may come out through lies, deception, and false flattery in order to try to cover up what is in our hearts, or both.
Yet, our speech is to be gentle, but not soft in the sense of lenient on sin, or compromising of truth, or pleasing and agreeable to the flesh. Rather, this gentleness is divine meekness, which is gentle strength. It is not weakness. Jesus was meek, but he was never weak. He was never soft on sin. He always spoke the truth, but he spoke it in love. In all his speaking, Jesus expressed the power of the Holy Spirit, under the control of the Spirit.
But, the Lord knows all. He knows what is in our hearts. And, he will show us if we will let him, and if we are willing to allow him to change our hearts.
And, sometimes we are shown these things through our speech, because our speech often reveals what is in our hearts. And, it shows us if something is wrong that needs fixed. Or, it reveals to us that our hearts are in the right place, and that we are giving glory to God through what we say. So, it is the wise person who will allow the Lord to search his heart, to expose what is wrong, and who will submit to the Lord’s correction and instruction.
Proverbs 15:7-10 ESV
The lips of the wise spread knowledge;
not so the hearts of fools.
The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord,
but the prayer of the upright is acceptable to him.
The way of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord,
but he loves him who pursues righteousness.
There is severe discipline for him who forsakes the way;
whoever hates reproof will die.
There are many people in this world who have wicked, unbelieving hearts, and some of them profess faith in Jesus Christ with their lips. And, this is because their faith is based in a lie, not in the truth. For, they have taken the gospel of Jesus Christ and they have cleansed it of its purities by flushing it down a toilet, so to speak, so that it is now filled with all manner of evil.
And, this is what they are hiding in their hearts, instead of hiding the Word of God (the whole counsel of God) in their hearts. And, they are covering up the wickedness that is in their hearts with a false righteousness based on a lie which says that we can “believe” in Jesus, but that our faith does not have to alter our lifestyles, and that lifestyle change is optional, i.e. not required of God.
So, the hearts they are putting this cheapened grace gospel inside of are trash containers, not hearts cleansed by the blood of Jesus shed on a cross that we might die with him to sin and live with him to righteousness. So, no true salvation has taken place in their lives, because they feel they don’t have to submit to Christ as Lord, or follow him in obedience, or turn away from their sinful lifestyles. Again, they see these as optional.
So, what comes out of their mouths, which comes from their hearts, is trash talk, i.e. what is insulting to God and demoralizing of the true gospel, and in direct opposition to the Word of God and to the divine character and will of God for our lives, too. And, not only do they oppose the Word of God, but many of them are also strongly opposing the Lord’s servants, too, who are bringing them the truth of what God’s Word teaches regarding our salvation.
For, they have satisfied their thirsts (the desires of their hearts) with what is of the flesh, and with what is evil in God’s sight, and what is displeasing to God. They have accepted the lies and have rejected the truth. And, thus, their character is not being conformed to the likeness of Christ, but it is on a spiritual decline, going down in the toilet. And, heaven will not be their eternal destiny, but they will die in their sins (Gal. 6:7-8; Rom. 8:1-17).
Proverbs 15:30-33 ESV
The light of the eyes rejoices the heart,
and good news refreshes the bones.
The ear that listens to life-giving reproof
will dwell among the wise.
Whoever ignores instruction despises himself,
but he who listens to reproof gains intelligence.
The fear of the Lord is instruction in wisdom,
and humility comes before honor.
The light of our eyes is the true gospel of our salvation. It is the joy of the Lord and the peace of Christ in our hearts. It is our deliverance out of bondage to sin, and it is empowerment of the Spirit of God to walk righteously before our God. It is the wisdom of God, which is His divine Word. And, it is the counsel of God in our lives in teaching us the right way that we might walk in it (Lu. 9:23-25; Rom. 6:1-23; Eph. 4:17-24).
And, when we submit to this gospel, to our Lord, and to the truth of His Word, it does rejoice our hearts, because the truth sets us free from the control of sin over our lives, and it leads us to become bond-slaves of Christ’s righteousness (Rom. 6:1-23; Rom. 8:1-17; 1 Jn. 1:5-9).
For, we are not saved from our sins merely that we might be forgiven and have heaven as our eternal destiny. Jesus died that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; that we might no longer live for ourselves, but for him who gave his life up for us. For, his grace, which brings salvation, instructs us to say “No!” to ungodliness and worldly passions (fleshly desires/lusts) and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives while we wait for Christ’s return (1 Pet. 2:24; 2 Co. 5:15; Tit. 2:11-14; Eph. 4:17-24).
So, we need to not ignore the teachings of scripture which teach us that our salvation from sin demands death to sin and living to righteousness. For, scripture says that it is those who are walking according to the Spirit, and who are no longer walking (in practice, in lifestyle) according to the flesh, who are the ones no longer under condemnation, and who have eternal life with God (Rom. 6:1-23; Rom. 8:1-17; Lu. 9:23-25; 1 Jn. 1:5-9).
Also, the scriptures teach that if we walk, in lifestyle (in practice, habit) according to our flesh, that we will die in our sins, no matter what we confess with our lips. So, we need to take this to heart. If our salvation from sin does not result in changed hearts and lives, away from living to sin and self to now living to the praise, glory and honor of God, in obedience to our Lord, then we are not genuinely saved (Gal. 5:19-21; Gal. 6:7-8).
So, know the truth, and follow the truth, for the truth will set you free.
It’s All You
Lyrics by Tosin Iyawo Ogaga
Music by Sue Love @ Original Works
June 3, 2019
You are the reason I want to dance.
You are the reason I want to sing.
You are the reason, expressing myself,
I serve You in all the ways You lead me.
You are the reason my heart gives You praise.
You are the reason that I am alive.
I bring out Your best moves
Just so I do embrace You;
Sing out loud as You lead just to please You.
Let myself follow You. I don’t care who watches me.
All I want to do is to make you smile.
Let every fiber of me bring You praise.
Your love has lifted my feet to dance.
Your faithfulness leaves me singing for joy.
You, Jesus, are the reason, it’s all You.
Your grace gives me life.
*full lyrics used by permission of the lyricist