Summary: Are we really and truly trying to please God with our communication, customs and conduct, or are we trying to please man?
COMMUNICATION - Our words will be kind and not foolish
KINDNESS IN SPEECH V. 1
Matthew Henry said that “if wrath rises like a threatening storm, then a soft answer will turn it away like the winds.”
The Speech Research Unit of Kenyon College has proved that when a person is shouted at, he simply cannot help but shout back. You can use this knowledge to keep another person from becoming angry: Control the other person’s tone of voice by controlling your own tone of voice.
Have you ever tried to argue in a whisper? It is equally hard to argue with someone who insists on answering gently.
ILL: In Judges 8:1-3, the Ephriamites were angry when they realized that they had not been included in the raid on the Midianites, but Gideon’s kind answer subsided their anger.
KINDNESS PRODUCED KINDNESS; RAGE PRODUCES RAGE.
Colossians 4:6 “Let your speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.
WISDOM IN SPEECH - V.2 and 7
The man or woman who has knowledge is not only to enjoy it for his or her own entertainment, but is to use it properly to build up others. We are to make pains to preach and teach sober instruction, counsel, comfort tempered by humility and love. We are to proclaim useful knowledge to others so that they may preach and teach such to others: so wisdom is dispersed.
The heart of the foolish does not do so, but spews forth words with no worth or value. He has nothing to disperse that is good—if he did, he would not have the will to do so.
ILL: Present the story of the ten virgins from Matthew 25 to show that the wise person accepts God’s ways, the foolish person does not.
Job 28:28 “Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom…”
CUSTOMS - V4 Our habits will bring honor to God, not dishonor.
The language of a Christian is to be wholesome and pure so as to avoid any “appearance of evil.” The words that come from the mouth of a child of God should be words of praise, comfort, exhortation, and edification. They are not to be vulgar words that damage the spirit or inflame the anger of others or themselves. BAD HABITS IN GENERAL (TOBACCO, GOSSIPING, DRUGS, ALCOHOL, LACK OF CHURCH ATTENDANCE, CURSING, ETC.) WILL PULL YOU DOWN NOW, AND, WHILE THEY CAN BE CONTROLLED, WILL NEVER BE CONQUERED. YOU MUST BE ON YOUR GUARD.
ILL: Little boy is selling a push mower to a preacher. Examining the machine, he asks, “Does it run?” “Yes,” answered the boy. “May I start it?” “Go ahead,” said the lad. The preacher pulled and pulled and pulled, but the mower would not start. The preacher said, “This thing will not start.” The boy explained, “That’s because you have to ‘cuss’ it.” “Well, I am a preacher. I haven’t cussed in 18 years,” said the preacher. The boy answered, “Keep pulling, it’ll come back to you.”
CONDUCT - V 8-9 Our heart will honor God.
Who is the upright man? The upright man this the man who is sick and tired of sin and sincerely craves the salvation of God. The word upright is synonymous with righteous. It is an adjective that describes a person’s day to day actions as a result of a state of mind that seeks after God.