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Taming the Tongue

by John Tilton on November 22, 2021


“Do you not see that whatever goes into the mouth passes into the stomach and is expelled?  But what comes out of the mouth proceeds from the heart, and this defiles a person.  For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false witness, slander. These are what defile a person. But to eat with unwashed hands does not defile anyone." (Matthew 15:17-20)


Jesus was responding to the complaint that his disciples didn’t follow the tradition of washing and cleansing their hands before eating.  Jesus response was succinct and so clear that it wasn’t what would pass through the disciples’ mouths would that would defile them, but instead, what comes forth from one’s mouth.  Jesus continued that the source of one’s words are the same source of our actions ... one’s heart.


This is such a great reminder me about filtering my words and actions through a heart after the Lord’s heart, and that the Holy Spirit would guide me in those situations that cause me to want to react in an adverse way.  I find that it is those times where I feel someone has said something hurtful or meant me harm that I have a real propensity to retaliate either verbally or physically.

Given this continuance of the pandemic, we also see where the COVID vaccine and related issues are dividing families, friends, and people in church.  May we “test the spirits” as we read in 1 John 4:1-3 for discernment before we listen to others and speak out with words that can divide and offend.  Somethings are to be personal choices rather than debatable issues in the court of public opinion brought on my our words.


Dear Lord, please cleanse and mold my heart so that I will edify you and others who. I speak.  Even if it is subtle.  May my words be pure from you Lord, and not from a unforgiving and vengeful heart.  May my heart br worn on my sleeves through my words inspired by the Holy Spirit.


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