Summary: This sermon encourages believers to open their mouths and share their faith.
Series: Taming the Tongue---James 3
Introduction: Most of the messages we have looked at based on James 3 have focused on restraining an out of control tongue.
We all envy the man or woman who knows exactly when to speak and when to be silent.
Outspoken Christians and silent Christians..
Moments of silence
"It is better to have people think you a fool, than to open your mouth and remove all doubt."
-- Mark Twain
"I believe that one always does himself and his audience an injustice when he speaks merely for the sake of speaking. I do not believe that one should speak unless, deep down in his heart, he feels convinced that he has a message to deliver."
--- Proverbs 17:28 Even a fool who keeps silent is considered wise; when he closes his lips, he is deemed intelligent.
1. SILENCE IS NECESSARY IN ORDER TO HEAR FROM GOD IN OUR LIVES: One of the problems with my generation is that we cannot go a second without noise. The Psalmist reminds us to, “be still and know that I am God”
---ELIJAH –HIDING IN A CAVE AFTER THE HUGE SHOWDOWN ON MT. CARMEL WITH THE PROPHETS OF BAAL! 1 Kings 19:11-13
11 The LORD said, “Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the LORD, for the LORD is about to pass by.” Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake. 12 After the earthquake came a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper. 13 When Elijah heard it, he pulled his cloak over his face and went out and stood at the mouth of the cave. Then a voice said to him, “What are you doing here, Elijah?”
---Religious orders such as the Benedictines have insisted on this as one of the essential rules of their institutes.
2.SILENCE IS NECESSARY WHEN THERE IS NOTHING LESS TO SAY ON A TOPIC!---when the debate at hand is foolish and can not be resolved by human logic or wisdom!
But Jesus remained silent. The high priest said to him, "I charge you under oath by the living God: Tell us if you are the Messiah, the Son of God." Matthew 26:63
Isaiah 53:7 He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before its shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth.
Do not speak to fools, for they will scorn your prudent words.
Proverbs 26:4 Do not answer a fool according to his folly, or you yourself will be just like him.
"Don't waste what is holy on people who are unholy. Don't throw your pearls to pigs! They will trample the pearls, then turn and attack you.
2 Timothy 2:23 “Don't have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments, because you know they produce quarrels.”
1Timothy 1:4 Some devote themselves to myths and endless genealogies. Such things promote controversial speculations rather than advancing God's work--which is by faith.
---How many buttons can you have on your shirt?
---Can a man who is saved, shave?
---Can women wear pants or wear a little make up?
---Can we use plastic communion cups?
---Can we baptize in still water or does it have to be a river?
---Can we praise God with string instruments
3. We should remain silent if we cannot speak the truth in love!
The last thing we need is another Eric Rudolph who sought to speak up for the unborn by bombing abortion clinics!
While we can see that there are clearly times to remain silent in the Bible!
There is also a time to speak!
PREPOSITION: This AM I want to take a few minutes and look at a few of those clear times when Christians should speak!
I. We must speak up when we see or know of injustice!
Esther 4:14----For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise from another place, but you and your father's family will perish. And who knows but that you have come to your royal position for such a time as this?"
Learn to do right; seek justice. Defend the oppressed. Take up the cause of the fatherless; plead the case of the widow.
This means that when there is an injustice being committed against people that may consider us their enemy we still speak up! Jesus called us to love our enemies!
Ill: THAT EVEN WHEN THEY HATE US WE STILL SPEAK UP ABOUT INJUSTICE! WE PLEAD THE CASE OF THE WIDOW AND ORPHAN!