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Gentle speech

Memorize: Proverbs 25:11

A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver.

Read: John 8:1-11

Spoken words are powerful and can be met with great violence by the recipient. A typical illustration is found in our reading for today. Moses had issued a command to Israel in the name of the Lord. By that command, anyone caught in adultery is to be stoned to death. A lady was caught in adultery and because hypocrites are quick to judge and condemn others without first judging themselves, a crowd gathered to stone the person caught in adultery but they met Jesus. Wanting to tempt Jesus, they asked whether it was lawful to stone the culprit to death. Jesus could have spoken tersely to them having found that they were testing Him. But, He rather took them on with wise words: He did not say the lady caught was innocent, neither did He say Moses’ assertion was incorrect. He rather played the ball gently back at them: only the one without sin should stone her first. Conscience would not let any cast the stone.

To be like Christ, we also must learn to speak words fitly. Do not use harsh words where you should use soft words. The impact the words would have on the audience is very important. No matter how difficult the situation may appear, your use of words is important in determining whether the tide will be turned in your favor or not. It is better not to speak at all than to say the wrong things that may eventually draw the wrath of the recipient.

John the Baptist was a hard man. He spoke tersely against the king at his time and will not spare him of the rod of his lips. The king got him arrested and incarcerated. He was so discomfited that he sent terse words to Christ also. This was the one he had told the world he was not worthy to lose the lace of His shoes; the one he by himself told the people was the Messiah. The terse words did not bring from Christ what John desired which was rescue from prison. It was not difficult for Christ to have spoken a word and John would have been released from prison but He did not. Rather the Lord sent back to him that blessed was he who was not offended in Him. That was the last they related before John was beheaded. The things you say can make or mar your situation. Please speak fitly henceforth.

Pray: Father, I know life and death lies in the power of the tongue: do help me to use my tongue always for life and not death in Jesus name.

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