Sermon on Sunday, April 7, 2013 by Pastor Thomas Tate
THE POWER OF THE WORD
- In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being. In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.
- In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was formless and void, and darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters. Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light day, and the darkness He called night. And there was evening and there was morning, one day.
Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit.
THE POWER TO DESTROY
- For we all stumble in many ways. If anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect man, able to bridle the whole body as well. Now if we put the bits into the horses’ mouths so that they will obey us, we direct their entire body as well. Look at the ships also, though they are so great and are driven by strong winds, are still directed by a very small rudder wherever the inclination of the pilot desires. So also the tongue is a small part of the body, and yet it boasts of great things. See how great a forest is set aflame by such a small fire!
- And the tongue is a fire, the very world of iniquity; the tongue is set among our members as that which defiles the entire body, and sets on fire the course of our life, and is set on fire by hell. For every species of beasts and birds, of reptiles and creatures of the sea, is tamed and has been tamed by the human race. But no one can tame the tongue; it is a restless evil and full of deadly poison. With it we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the likeness of God; from the same mouth come both blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be this way.
THE POWER OF TO MANY WORDS
- When there are many words, transgression is unavoidable, but he who restrains his lips is wise.
- Do not be hasty in word or impulsive in thought to bring up a matter in the presence of God. For God is in heaven and you are on the earth; therefore let your words be few. For the dream comes through much effort and the voice of a fool through many words.
THE POWER OF UNSPOKEN WORDS
- For you have been called for this purpose, since Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example for you to follow in His steps, who committed no sin, nor was any deceit found in His mouth; and while being reviled, He did not revile in return; while suffering, He uttered no threats, but kept entrusting Himself to Him who judges righteously; and He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds you were healed.
- Humble yourselves in the presence of the Lord, and He will exalt you. Do not speak against one another, brethren. He who speaks against a brother or judges his brother, speaks against the law and judges the law; but if you judge the law, you are not a doer of the law but a judge of it. There is only one Lawgiver and Judge, the One who is able to save and to destroy; but who are you who judge your neighbor?
WE WILL BE JUDGED BY OUR WORDS
- “The good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth what is good; and the evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth what is evil; for his mouth speaks from that which fills his heart.
- “But I tell you that every careless word that people speak, they shall give an accounting for it in the day of judgment. “For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.”
IF YOU’RE THE ONLY ONE LAUGHING, IT’S NOT FUNNY?
- Like a madman who throws firebrands, arrows and death, so is the man who deceives his neighbor, and says, “Was I not joking?”
THE POWER TO BUILD UP
- Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification according to the need of the moment, so that it will give grace to those who hear. Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.
THROUGH THE POWER OF CHRIST
- Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children; and walk in love, just as Christ also loved you and gave Himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God as a fragrant aroma. But immorality or any impurity or greed must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints; and there must be no filthiness and silly talk, or coarse jesting, which are not fitting, but rather giving of thanks.
- …I love you!
- …I forgive you!
- …I adopt you!
- …I accept you!
- …I care for you!
- …I have good plans for you!
- …I believe in you!
- …I desire you!
- …I will empower you!
WORDS HAVE THE POWER TO SAVE
- But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart”—that is, the word of faith which we are preaching, that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.
Sermon-based Bble Study Questions
1. What are some words that were said to you that you have never forgotten and why? Who said, “I love you” first? Who made you feel that you had worth and how? Who hurt you and what did they say?
2. What impact has the words of others had on shaping your life?
3. Read James 3:2-10. When have you seen words cause a fire of destruction in you family, work, school…?
4. Read Proverbs 10:19. How have you experienced this in your life? How has today’s multitude of electronic (texting, FB, twitter, etc.) means to communicate contributed to this?
5. Read 1 Peter 2:21-24. What was the result of His silent unjust suffering? What lesson can we learn from Jesus here about the power of not responding when wronged?
7. Read Ephesians 4:29-5:4. What should our words do? When was the last time someone built you up? When was the last time you built someone up? Where do we get the power to do this and who was so great at building up that we should imitate him?
8. How does it make you feel to know that God says He; loves you, forgives you, adopts you, accepts you, cares for you, has a good plan for you, believes in you, desires you and empowers you?
9. Who do you need to go to and let them know that they matter, that they are forgiven, that they are appreciated, that you are sorry, and that you believe in them?