Saturday, 18 January 2014

When a Guarded Tongue Means Hypocrisy

(This reading is based on Proverbs 13 and is read in accordance with the Revived by His Word initiative of the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventist Church.)

"He who guards his mouth preserves his life, but he who opens wide his lips shall have destruction." Prov. 13: 3

A discussion on the management or control of the mouth/lips/tongue is importantly contextualized by the utterance of Jesus found in Matt. 12: 34 and Luke 6: 45, "Out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaketh." Whatever exits the mouth has another source outside the mouth. The mouth simply gives voice to the thoughts of the mind. It's like a speaker on a computer device; what you hear depends on what is being processed. That said then, it is clear that a control of the utterances of the mouth is really a control of the thoughts of the mind; this is where it all matters.

Of course in an attempt to mislead others regarding the true position of our minds/hearts on an issue we sometimes say the politically correct thing - much like a politician tells people what they want to hear in order to win their votes. This is really hypocrisy at work. But while this may gain us mileage with our human counterparts (because we may have them fooled), it'll get us nowhere with God. Samuel was clear on this issue when he anointed David as future king of Israel, "for man looketh on the outward display (the utterances of the mouth), but the Lord looketh on the heart." 1 Samuel 16: 7. Hence the passage in Proverbs 4: 23, "Keep thy heart with all diligence, for out of it are the issues of life."

                                          تفسير الاحلام في رؤيا الناس Interpretation of ...

Every effort should of course be made to select the most effective time a place to make our utterances so our words will be given the best chance of not being lost on those we seek to reach, while not unduly exposing ourselves to danger. There are times however when, even in the face of clear danger we must state the truth of God. This is what got the Hebrew boys and Daniel in trouble, got John the Baptist beheaded, Jesus crucified, the Apostles martyred (at least attempted), the millions who perished in the Dark Ages. Of this group (barring Jesus Himself), seen in vision in Heaven, John was told in Revelation 7: 14, "These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb." Matt. 24: 14 tells us why at any cost the Gospel must be proclaimed, "And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come."

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