Watch Your Mouth!
"Watch your mouth!" Those words take on a significantly more serious tone when they come from Jesus instead of just your Mom. But, that is exactly what the Lord warns us about in Matthew 15. Jesus warns His disciples:
(Matthew 15:18-20) "What comes out of the mouth proceeds from the heart, and this defiles a person. For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false witness, slander. These are what defile a person."
The context of this challenge is one of His many confrontations with the religious authorities recorded in Matthew's gospel. The Pharisees are more concerned with the ceremonial washing of hands before a meal than the cleanliness of their own heart. They pay greater attention to a man-made tradition than they do the law of God. They would rather have their fellow Hebrews provide financially for the work of the Temple than for the care of their own aging parents. The result?
"Thus you nullify the word of God for the sake of your tradition."
Jesus' harsh rebuke of the Pharisees - "You hypocrites! 'These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. They worship me in vain; their teachings are but rules taught by men,'" leads to the only comic relief in the chapter. Simon Peter asks Jesus: "Do you know that the Pharisees were offended when they heard this?"
On the heals of this, Jesus begins to address the matters of the heart and mouth. He tells us that it's not what goes in that we have to worry about, but what comes out. Because, these are what truly defile a person. We cannot use the lame excuse, "I don't know where that came from." It came out of you because it is in you! Nor can we say, "You made me __________!" No one can pull something out of you that is not already resident in your own heart. Things like...
Evil thoughts: Where does your mind go when it wanders? Do you dwell on - ruminate on - meditate on things you should be expelling?
Murder: Do you fantasize about getting revenge? Do you inwardly rejoice when someone gets "what they deserve," as if you can be the judge of what that should be? Side note: Thank God that I don't get what I deserve. Jesus got what I deserve and I get what He alone deserve!
Adultery/Sexual immorality: We tell our children, "Be careful little eyes what you see." Do we obey these words? What holds you back from sexual sin? Exposure - Consequences - Fear or Faith that God really knows what he is talking about when it comes to this arena of life? Purity paves the way to intimacy!
Theft: You might say, "I would never steal anything." But are you feeding discontentment? If you are, when that baby gets big enough, it's going to want more? Here's a question to ponder: What's higher, your cable bill and entertainment expenses or your giving to the Lord's work and to the poor? Hmmm?
False witness/slander: What percentage of what you say it true? What percentage of what you say it helpful? What percentage of what you say it encouraging? What percentage of what you say it builds people up? Or, just to take the negative side... Do you lie? Do you make racist comments or assumptions? Do you criticize and yet not lift a finger to help?
Prayer: Father, may the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer.
BOBBY PRUITT | Lead Pastor
Bobby was born and raised in Atlanta, GA. He is the youngest of 13 children and was the first believer in his family. He graduated from Columbia Bible College and served in churches in North & South Carolina before coming to Texas in 1994. Bobby and Amy have been married since November of 1990 and have 3 children (Riley, Beau, and Emma Grace).