Tuesday, November 27, 2007

What your Mouth! DEVOTIONAL

James 3:2-12 (New International Version)
2We all stumble in many ways. If anyone is never at fault in what he says, he is a perfect man, able to keep his whole body in check. 3When we put bits into the mouths of horses to make them obey us, we can turn the whole animal. 4Or take ships as an example. Although they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are steered by a very small rudder wherever the pilot wants to go. 5Likewise the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. 6The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole person, sets the whole course of his life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell. 7All kinds of animals, birds, reptiles and creatures of the sea are being tamed and have been tamed by man, 8but no man can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison. 9With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in God's likeness. 10Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers, this should not be. 11Can both fresh water and salt[ a] water flow from the same spring? 12My brothers, can a fig tree bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Neither can a salt spring produce fresh water.
Watch your mouth is an American expression meant to bring a person's attention to what they're saying. Usually the person needs to stop whatever they're saying completely.
The book of James goes on further to say that if someone is perfect in the things he or she says, they're fully developed in character, able to control his whole body and to curb his entire nature.
We all know words are powerful because the Bible says that death and life are in the power of the tongue, which raises the question: how can I watch my mouth according to the Bible? Let's start from the beginning!
Genesis 1: 3,4 "And God said, Let there be light: and there was light. And God saw light…"
Brothers and sisters, God said it before He saw it. I'm glad that in the beginning He didn't say 'it sure is dark out here.' He said let there be light and there was light. As a matter of fact there's light til today. There's power in words. Creative power because the Holy Spirit lives in us.
Jesus said it before He saw it. Let's read Mark 11:12-14; 20-24:12
The next day as they were leaving Bethany, Jesus was hungry. 13Seeing in the distance a fig tree in leaf, he went to find out if it had any fruit. When he reached it, he found nothing but leaves, because it was not the season for figs. 14Then he said to the tree, "May no one ever eat fruit from you again." And his disciples heard him say it.20 In the morning, as they went along, they saw the fig tree withered from the roots. 21Peter remembered and said to Jesus, "Rabbi, look! The fig tree you cursed has withered!" 22 "Have[a] faith in God," Jesus answered. 23"I tell you the truth, if anyone says to this mountain, 'Go, throw yourself into the sea,' and does not doubt in his heart but believes that what he says will happen, it will be done for him. 24Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.
The disciples were surprised the fig tree dried up! The situation was a great opportunity of teaching. Jesus taught us that whatever we say without any doubt in our heart will take place. These words Jesus is talking about fit into a special category: the word of faith. Abraham, the father of faith, said it before he saw it. We all know the story: God gave Abram and Sarai new names: Abraham "for a father of many nations I have made thee" and Sarah "a mother of many nations."
How clever was that? Every time they introduced themselves they were saying "hello, I'm a father of many nations!" Not only Abraham was declaring his future often but others were doing the same for him.
Abraham must have been tempted to be discouraged on the way to fatherhood. Romans 4:20,21 says "He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith (he grew strong and was empowered by faith as he gave praise and glory praise and glory to God. AMP). And being fully persuaded that what he had promised, he was able also to perform.
When you give glory to God you are saying 'God is greater than my problems, He's well able to provide my every need according to His riches in glory. I believe God!'
God said it before He saw it. Jesus said it before He saw it. Abraham said it before he saw it. What are you saying before you see it?
Are you having difficulties seeing something come to pass? I encourage you to watch your mouth. What do you have in it? The word of faith or the word of doubt?
Proverbs 18:20-21 say "A man's belly shall be satisfied with the fruit of his mouth; and with the increase of his lips shall he be filled. Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and they who indulge in it shall eat the fruit of it (for death or life)." AMP
We need to speak life over ourselves, other people and the circumstances surrounding us. Watch your mouth! Not because I said so but because God said so.