Like a Boomerang
Jesus teaches that we will be judged according to our own words. If we speak condemnation, we will be condemned. If we speak encouragement, we will be encouraged.
“For with what judgment you judge, you will be judged; and with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you.”
The Great Evangelical Mistake
"Wait a minute -- I thought salvation was by faith alone?"
We often extol the gate of salvation — the cross — which is good. But we often neglect the narrow road of discipleship that follows.
Jesus is clear: our words will be examined at the judgment. If not for His mercy and forgiveness, no one could stand. Because of His grace, we can become "new trees" with "new fruit"
Three Kinds of Tree; Three Kinds of Fruit
The dark tree bears rotten fruit
Spewing venom is never appropriate for a regenerate heart.
The barren tree bears no fruit
Biting our tongues to stifle wicked words is not an adequate goal either.
The revived tree bears delicious fruit
Like a fountain, a renewed heart will flow forth in praise to God and encouragement for others.
Disclaimer: Good Words Are Not Always Soft
Sometimes good medicine tastes awful!
“Open rebuke is better Than love carefully concealed.”
“Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching.”
(2 Timothy 4:12)
Make the Tree Good
Are your words venom?
Perhaps your heart needs revival, and forgiveness needs to make a home in your heart.
Are your words neutral?
Perhaps you only need to prime the pump to let encouragement flow.
Are your words a fountain of blessing?
Praise God for the work he has done in you! Moreover: praise God for the work He is doing through you!
Our words hold the power of death and life. What we say can turn cold hearts of stone into beating hearts of flesh.
New King James Version (NKJV)
A Tree Known By Its Fruit
33 “Either make the tree good and its fruit good, or else make the tree bad and its fruit bad; for a tree is known by its fruit. 34 Brood of vipers! How can you, being evil, speak good things? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. 35 A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good things, and an evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth evil things. 36 But I say to you that for every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment. 37 For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.”