Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Speech


Colossians 4:6 “Let your speech be always with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.”

            I always try to think of this verse regarding how I talk to others or how I talk in general.  The first word in this verse, “Let” indicates that we can’t even control our own speech or conversations.  When we are walking with the Lord or desire to be in a right relationship with the Lord, the way we talk might be a good start.  When we have the mindset that we need to be fully trusting in the Lord in our lives, our daily lives, verses in the Bible, like this one, becomes real to us.    

There are 2 options we have, as far as I can tell.  We can either let our speech be controlled by ourselves (flesh) or let Christ control it.  When I read this verse and, like other verses that start with “Let”, tells me that if we aren’t letting the Holy Spirit control our speech than we are letting our flesh control our speech.   When we’re letting the flesh control our speech, it is mostly when we have a bad attitude, or we’re arguing or yelling and we just start to say things that might get us into trouble.  It’s hard to be careful what we say, especially when we’re arguing with our brothers or sisters or get frustrated because our parents tell us to do something we don’t want to do, but this verse was written for a reason and it’s during those times that we need to stop and think before we talk or argue. 

Eph 4:29 “Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.”

            Colossians 3:23 “And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men;”

               Paul’s goal in his life was to Glorify and Honor the Lord in everything he did. All the places that Paul went to, he had to walk or ride a horse or camel, but however you look at it, it took a while to get where he was going.  The point is that he must have had a lot of time to think about how to phrase things or explain different things from the Bible.  If somebody asked you, “How do I get saved?”?  How would you explain the Gospel to them?  That’s something we need to think about.

               Before we think about whole explanations, however, even the individual words we use when talking about general things need to be yielded to Christ.   I don’t always think about each individual word when I’m talking to someone, and doing this study has challenged me.  When we yield our speech to Christ and we are aware of what we say, that alone is a testimony to the person we’re talking to.  If we get into a habit of perhaps changing our vocabulary around or simply choosing other words every once in a while, that might help us be more aware of our speech, and maybe in a few years or so our whole way of talking will change for the glory and honor of the Lord.           

The Greek word is charis (khar’eece), which is simply favor.      

Most often in the Bible when grace is mentioned, it is usually in reference to God’s grace shown upon his children.  In Colossians, Paul writes that our speech should always be with grace, or favor……to who?....whoever it is we’re talking to

I was ALWAYS told by my mother growing up that if I don’t have anything nice to say then don’t say it.  I’m sure that all of you have heard the same thing at one point.

Most of us here have brothers or sisters and it’s only natural for siblings to argue once in a while.   The next time that we get into an argument, regardless of who started it, let’s remember what the Bible says in the book of Colossians and if we don’t have anything nice to say then maybe it would be a good idea to just not say anything.  We need to pray for wisdom when we talk to others. 

Years ago, I had a friend that was REALLY smart and could read something and fully understand it and he also had, I thought at the time, really good awareness of what the Bible said.  I thought it was pretty safe to trust what he said about…anything really.  I had asked my friend to go to the church website and read it and tell me what he thinks and because he was a Christian, I thought he would easily agree with it.   When we were about to discuss the website, I knew I needed to pray about it, not only what was said, but that the Lord’s will would be done.  I had no idea how the conversation would go, especially since I’m not very good at explaining my thoughts.  That worked out for the glory and honor of the Lord and I am so thankful that I depended on the Lord to guide me through that conversation.

Whatever age we are, the Lord knows if we really want to glorify Him, and so we need to depend on the Lord to provide even the very words that we speak.  We also need to understand that it is only by God’s grace (favor) that he provides those words and conversations, for His glory and honor.


Salt is good for:  

1.      Preserving food (flavor)

2.    Pour a mound of salt on an ink spot on your carpet; let the salt soak up the stain.

3.    Dry salt sprinkled on your toothbrush makes a good tooth polisher.

4.    Rinse a sore eye with a little salt water.

The point is that salt can be a good thing.  Numerous times in the Bible, salt is used as a comparison.  The Lord Jesus, himself says that we are the salt of the Earth (Matthew 5:13).  We’re told In Colossians that our speech needs to be seasoned with salt.  If salt is a good thing, do you think we should talk about good things?  I think so.  Paul is using this phrase just to tell us again that our speech needs to be good.  Maybe when we talk to others, we can remember this salt shaker and connect it to this verse in Colossians. 
Colossians 4:6 “Let your speech be always with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.”

In the last section of this verse, Paul comes to a final thought and tells us that when we think before we talk and seek to Glorify God in our speech, we will be able to answer others. 

 How do you think God would want us to answer others and talk with them?   When we read the Bible, we’ll learn more about God and his plan for us.  He gave us His word so that we would read it and learn more of Him and whatever we learn about God, we can tell others. 

We need to keep in mind how to answer others and also how GOD would want us to answer others, coworkers, friends, family, etc.  We might not think that it’s important to watch what we say when we are talking about little things like what happened in school or a T.V. show that we recently saw, but if we truly want to please the Lord in everything we do, we will want to please the Lord in what we say too.  Maybe the next time we’re talking to a friend or a family member, we should LOOK for a chance to say something nice or even start talking about something that we read from the Bible.    The more we read from God’s word, the more he teaches us and the more he teaches us, the more we want to share that with others.  

We need to watch what we say to others, to give God the glory, but the Bible also commands us to edify one another with our speech.

Eph 4:29 “Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.”

Believers are commanded to stop any corrupt communication that might and only talk about the things that are edifying.  Over the years, I have noticed a huge rise in sarcasm and people say more and more that they are “fluent in sarcasm.”  I was even told once that some friends of mine were completely sarcastic during the whole conversation.  Sarcasm has its place and I am sarcastic at times as well, but it can be taken to the extreme.  Sarcasm can be a very deceptive way of speech. Think about it, if a person makes a sarcastic comment, you believe it, and then after a moment that person says they were just kidding.  For that moment, that person deceived you into thinking about something that was a complete lie.  Lies are not edifying at all and, in fact a lie is a sin.  The verse in Ephesians also commands us that our speech needs to minister grace to the hearers.  Sarcasm is not very gracious, whatever the context.  It is a type of speech that is meant to be deceptive.  Philippians 4:8 mentions 8 key items that we are to think about so that our thought life might be pleasing to the Lord.  This verse can also be applied to our speech.  
The Bible says a lot about our speech and believers need to heed the Word of the Lord on this matter, and all matters.  

2 Peter 1:3 “According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:”

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