Wednesday, September 5, 2007

How's Your Heart?

Matthew 12:36-37 "I tell you that on the day of judgment people will have to account for every careless word they speak. For by your words you will be acquitted and, and by your words you will be condemned."

This sounds contradictory to the gospel of grace, doesn't it; that we will be condemned or acquitted by our words? But this is exactly what Jesus is telling us in these verses. He said that a tree is either good and it produces good fruit, or it is bad and produces bad fruit (Matthew 12:33). He then went on to say that what you say comes from the overflow of your heart (Matthew 12:34) and that the good person will produce good, or the evil person evil from what is inside of them (Matthew 12:35). So what Jesus is telling us here is that the very words we speak are an indicator of the condition of our heart.

In the book of James we see another warning about the tongue; in chapter 3 James writes "For we all stumble in many ways. If anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect man, able to bridle his whole body as well." (James 3 2 NASB) This is not saying that perfection comes from being able to control what you say; it is telling us the same thing that Jesus said back in Matthew chapter 12; that what we speak is an indication of what is in our heart. Perfection does not come from what we do or do not say, but what we say makes it obvious what is in our heart.

So how do we go about making sure that what we have in our hearts is pure and holy? We are told in Psalm 119 the importance of what we allow into our hearts, or thoughts. Verse 11 says, "Your word I have hidden in my heart, that I might not sin against You."(Psalm 119:11 NKJV). And in Psalm 37 we see the following, "The mouth of the righteous utters wisdom, And his tongue speaks justice. The law of his God is in his heart; His steps do not slip. " (Psalm 37:30-31 NASB).

If you want to have pure thoughts and wholesome words try putting God's word into your mind and heart.
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