Watering the Tulips
July 10, 2013
“Do you see a man hasty in his words? There is more hope for a fool than for him” – Proverbs 29:20
We all know the type – the man who constantly shoots off at the mouth without thinking. And certainly, we’ve all been guilty of just such actions. However, a child of God should be growing in maturity. And, one of the marks of maturity is to handle our words with wisdom.
Even in troublesome situations, there is a proper way to handle ourselves. What we may call “standing up for God”, God may judge to be arrogant or self-serving. What we may call “contending for the faith”, God may judge to be a gross misrepresentation of His character, as our Father. Don’t misunderstand; we certainly must always be willing to stand up for the truth. However, there is a right and proper way to do this. We must stand in a way that is in accordance with God’s holy character.
Paul was clearly a man that stood up for God and His Word. Yet, Paul’s instruction to the church at Colosse was, “Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you ought to answer each one” (Colossians 4:6). He lived this. A casual reading of the history of Paul’s ministry in the Book of Acts will show forth speech full of grace. As he instructed the Ephesian saints, so Paul sought to speak the truth in love (Ephesians 4:15). We should do the same.
One of the marks of maturity in the faith is the ability to hold one’s tongue. James said, “If anyone does not stumble in word, he is a perfect man, able also to bridle the whole body” (James 3:2). In a society where being outspoken seems to be commended, this can certainly be difficult. Does that outspoken obnoxious person sometimes get their way? Sadly, the answer is yes. But, this doesn’t give a child of God the right to violate God’s Word and misrepresent His character.
In a generation of outspoken religionists, Jesus said, “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God” (Matthew 5:9). This is not a suggestion for the people of God. This is a description of the people of God. And, if we look back through history since Jesus first established His church, we see a meek, quiet people that sought to share the love of Jesus through the Gospel. We do not find a loud, arrogant group. These people were “called sons of God”. Let us seek to be recognized in such a way.
One of the hardest things to do as a child of God is to fight the temptation to conform to society’s standards. While our society may promote and even glorify outspokenness, let us do our best to properly represent our Heavenly Father by conforming to His character and His Word.
Watering the Tulips is brought to you by Sovereign Grace Baptist Church Baptist Fellowship in Northport, AL. For more information, please visit http://www.sovereigngrace.net. “Your App to the Gospel” is available in the iTunes app store, Google Play and now the Windows Phone Marketplace. Please download it today!!