Sermon:
OPEN LEADING CONGREGATION IN THIS CHILDREN’S SONG
Oh, be careful little eyes, what you see, (repeat)
For the Father up above, is looking down in love,
Oh be careful little eyes what you see.

Oh, be careful little mouth, what you say, (repeat),
For the Father up above, is looking down in love,
Oh be careful little mouth what you say.

Oh, be careful little hands, what you do (repeat),
For the Father up above, is looking down in love,
Oh be careful little hands what you do

Oh, be careful little mind what you think (repeat)
For the Father up above, is looking down in love,
Oh be careful little mind, what you think.

ILLUS: In the 1950s, the conventional wisdom of the day was that crime was caused by a person’s environment (how they were raised, where they were raised, how poor they were, if they were mistreated, etc.)
A psychologist by the name of Stanton Samenow, and a psychiatrist named Samuel Yochelson, believed that very philosophy but there had never been a scientific study to confirm it, so they began a 17-year study involving thousands of hours of clinical testing of 250 inmates in Washington D.C. to prove it.
To their astonishment, they discovered that:
· the cause of crime cannot be traced to environment, poverty, or oppression of criminals
· Instead crime is the result of individuals making, as they put it, wrong moral choices.

In 1977 they wrote a book where they documented their research (The Criminal Personality), and they concluded that the answer to crime is a “conversion of the wrong-doer to a more responsible lifestyle.” (Christianity Today, August 16, 1993, p. 30)

So, in other words, the solution to crime is:
· be careful little eyes what you see
· be careful little mouth what you say
· be careful little hands what you do
· and be careful little mind what you think.
Be careful.

That’s essentially what Paul is telling us here in Ephesians 5.
“Be careful.”
“Be VERY careful… how you live” (Ephesians 5:15)

Be careful what you see… what you say… what you do… what you think. Don’t live as unwise people but as wise. Make the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.

Paul goes on to say that:
“…God’s wrath comes on those who are disobedient. Therefore do not be partners with them.” (Ephesians 5:6-7)
Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness….” (Ephesians 5:11)
IN FACT “… it is shameful even to mention what the disobedient do in secret. (Eph. 5:12)

Well, what are these folks doing, that we ought not to do?

Let’s look first at Ephesians 5:4 “Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk or coarse joking, which are out of place, but rather thanksgiving.”
Be careful little mouth what you say.

ILLUS: Gregg Nydegger (the preacher over at "Christ’s Church" in Monticello, IN) tells the story of when he was a child, he and his brother Scott walked into the local barber shop. It was crowded, so, they took seats sort of behind the door where they walked in,