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Summary: The world tells us that gossip is harmless but this is not what God tells us.

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The World Says:

“Words don’t hurt anyone”

Scripture: James 1:26 Date: 21 March 2010

Purpose: The world tells us that gossip is harmless but this is not what God tells us.

Last week we began our sermon series, entitled, “The World Says”. I think we would all agree that our world is full of lies and deceit. We see it on every corner, every channel we turn to on the television, and we also see it creeping into our own lives as well. I believe we need to separate what the World tells us from what God tells us. It is time we see the truth!

When we give our lives to Jesus, we give Him everything and this includes our tongues as well.

Imagine your life is a great...BIG...boat. What's steering your ship? This clip reminds us that loose lips do indeed sink ships. If we change our words, we can change our course in a much better direction.

VIDEO: “Words”

26If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight rein on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless.

How can we be an effective witness for Christ if we are deceiving ourselves with our own words?

“Sticks and stones may break your bones, but words can never hurt you.” Oh, really? Try telling that to a child whose parent yells, “You’re a brat.” Try telling that to a wife whose husband screams, “I hate you.” Try telling that to a middle- aged woman who tells herself, I’m’ fat and ugly.” - Words can and do hurt all the time! The truth is, words hurt, don’t they? They hurt us, others, and God.

I. Words can hurt us.

A. (Proverbs 18:8) The words of a gossip are like choice morsels; they go down to a man's inmost parts.

1. This tells us that “Words of gossip are like choice morsels”. That what we say we take in ourselves, into our inmost parts.

2. You are what you eat. This is something we have heard most of our lives. It’s really common sense isn’t it? If we want to keep our physical body running healthy, we need to eat healthy.

Illustration: During my wrestling years I would always pull weight, tying

to get to the perfect wrestling weight. The temptation was all around me as

wrestling would kick-off each year during the Thanksgiving holiday.

Each year I would go through weeks of pain and agony, disciplining myself

to not eat all the cakes, pies, and goodies during Thanksgiving was tough.

Sometimes it was too much to handle and I would cave in late at night and

sneak a piece of cake or whatever was calling my name from the fridge. I

would tell myself, “It’s no big deal, it’s just a small piece of cake, it won’t hurt

at all.” I would wake up the next day feeling horrible and guilty.

I can remember after weeks of discipline, weighing before the firs tournament

of the year and making weight. My mind would go nuts and I would gorge

myself with the most unhealthiest foods I could get my hands on. Man, they

would taste so good! Then reality would hit me, the sickness of eating all the

wrong things would become too much for me and my body would scream out

to me, “Why, why did you just eat all this junk? You know we can’t compete in

the tournament with all this junk inside of us and we cannot perform for our

coach.” And I knew that the coach would be disappointed and that I just hurt

myself.

- This is much like us when we are living for Jesus. We abstain from Gossip, name calling, and sarcasm. It is very tempting at times and we want to act out, we want to scream, we want to cave in and lash out at individuals or situations. And sometimes we do. Maybe we say something negative about someone but it is something small and we try to justify it and tell ourselves “It’s no big deal, it’s just a small word and it won’t really hurt us at all.” Then we wake up the next day and we feel horrible about what we said.

- Maybe the world’s temptations are too strong at times and we cave in completely and gorge ourselves with Gossip, Slander, Cursing, and Screaming. It may feel great at the time but then it sets in and we realize that we have just hurt our witness and we cannot perform as we need to as a Christian.

- James 1:26 If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight rein on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless.

3. Careless words hurt us and our testimony. How can we expect to do God’s will if we are corrupting ourselves with harmful words?

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