Speaking the Truth in Love
It amazes me that so many "religious" people today, especially when they get angry, excuse themselves to use the foul language of the world. I expect to hear this kind of language from worldly people who do not claim to follow Jesus. But should the people of God use foul language? It is our hope to show in this program, that true children of God will obey the commandments of Jesus, including controlling their tongues.
I. EVILS OF THE TONGUE
A. Dangers of the tongue - James 3:1-18
C. Coarse jesting, dirty jokes, talking about things that are not proper - Ephesians 5:1-12
Does the Lord feel any differently today?
G. Quote and Illustration
1. Abraham Lincoln once said, "Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt."
2. There is a story told of a preacher who was traveling. Sitting near a person who kept using profanity, he asked him, "Are you paid anything for all the swearing you do?" "No," was the startled reply, "I do it for nothing." "Nothing?"cried the preacher, "You work cheap! You throw aside your character as a gentleman, inflict pain on your friends, break the Lord's commandments, and endanger your own soul - and all for nothing! You certainly work cheap. TOO CHEAP!"
H. We should be careful about using slang words. Many are called "euphemisms." Webster's Dictionary defines "euphemism" as: "The substitution of a mild, indirect, or vague expression for one thought to be offensive, harsh, or blunt."
1. "gosh" - Euphemism for God
2. "golly" - Euphemism for God
3. "goodness" - Euphemism for God
4. "gee" - Euphemism contraction of Jesus
5. "darn," - Euphemism for damn.
6. "dog gone" - Euphemism remodeling of God damn.
7. "heck" - Euphemism for hell.
8. "shoot" - GUESS!
9. "Law" - Euphemism for Lord.
10. "jiminee christmas" - Euphemism for Jesus Christ.
I. Swearing, telling dirty jokes, using God the Father's or God the Son's name in vain, or using substitute slang words sets a terrible example, reveals evil thoughts of the heart, puts out the light of Jesus, blends in with the world rather than exposing it, and is a sin against God (James 4:8).
II. GOOD USE OF THE TONGUE
A. True Story - I know two friends that play on a school ball team. They stick together. When some of their teammates, on the bus or in the locker room, start talking about things that are not proper, telling dirty jokes, using filthy language, or taking the Lord's name in vain; they separate themselves. We need more young people setting this type of example. Unfortunately, many older people who should be setting a better example, have either a bad habit or do not care what comes out of their mouths (Matthew 15:11, Mark 7:20).
C. A Christian's Speech should be:
1. Seasoned with salt - Colossians 4:6
4. Bridled - James 1:26
5. Shining a light in the world rather than blending in. Christians should be influencing those around them toward the Lord and not let foul language go on without saying something about it - Matthew 5:13-16
D. Two key verses from the New Century Version:
1. (James 1:26) People who think they are religious but say things they should not say are just fooling themselves. Their "religion" is worth nothing.
2. (Psalm 141:3) LORD, help me control my tongue; help me be careful about what I say.
A Christian should not be known as one who uses foul language or one that condones foul language. The speech of a Christian should be one of encouragement, correction, and of the Heavenly Father rather than that of the wicked world. Maybe you have developed a bad habit of taking part in the types of things we have talked about tonight. If you are not a Christian, it will be extremely hard to break these habits. Why not become a Christian, and then the Lord will help you with this problem and any other problems you face in this life? We hope to see you next time on "Speaking the Truth in Love".