4 Unto you, O men, I call; and my voice is to the sons of man.
5 O ye simple, understand wisdom: and, ye fools, be ye of an understanding heart.
6 Hear; for I will speak of excellent things; and the opening of my lips shall be right things.
7 For my mouth shall speak truth; and wickedness is an abomination to my lips.
8 All the words of my mouth are in righteousness; there is nothing froward or perverse in them.
9 They are all plain to him that understandeth, and right to them that find knowledge.
It is remarkable that God provides us with His wisdom. He could leave us all to our own devises without any remedy, but instead He sent His Son. The life, teachings, death, and resurrection of Jesus speak volumes to us, and in Him we find a treasure trove of understanding that saves us from this destructive and deceitful world.
The Holy Spirit, also known as the Spirit of Truth brings the testimony of Jesus and causes us to remember His words. As the Word works on our hearts, we learn to live the Word and speak the Word better over time.
How wonderful it would be to be able to claim this truthfully for ourselves: “all the words of my mouth are in righteousness; there is nothing forward or perverse in them.”
Jesus teaches that “out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks,” and our hearts are easily molded by this world. Painful experiences change us, ungodly influences corrupt us, and we are born with a nature that likes to have it so to a large degree.
It is an incredible act of mercy and grace that Jesus would die for us to forgive us of the destructive things we do—the words and actions that proceed out of a wicked heart—and it is an incredible act of mercy and grace that he sent the Holy Spirit to teach us and transform our hearts into His likeness.
Is it possible for a Christian to get to the point where they can make the claim above? I know there is a scripture in Revelation about some whose mouths speak no guile, so it must be so for some.
As with all things within the Christian journey, I have found that this saying of Jesus is true: We all experience a change of heart to one degree or another, but we do not all experience this in the same way. We all bring forth differing amounts of “fruit, some hundred, some sixty, some thirty.”
The important thing is that we are fruitful. The important thing is that we see enough change of heart that our actions are Christ-like to some degree, and the more we seek Jesus in this the more we will grow and bring forth more fruit.
6 If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned.
7 If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.
8 Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples.
9 As the Father hath loved me, so have I loved you: continue ye in my love.
10 If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love.
11 These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.
12 This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you (John 15:6-12).
If we love the Lord with all our heart and desire to keep His commandments: love towards God and others, then Jesus will send His Spirit to live in our hearts and change us (John 14). That is an amazing thing.
I don’t want to slander anyone, but I find it remarkable that the “spirit led” or “charismatic” churches are often some of the most legalistic. How is that? I have wondered at that for some time.
The Spirt is in direct opposition to the law of the letter or legalism, yet they still attempt righteousness in this regard by laying laws on their congregants concerning matters of dress, the sabbath, and so on.
Don’t they trust the Spirit to work on each person, so that they can make these choices with guidance from their new, Jesus-filled consciences according to His working that occurs at His rate and timing? No. They don’t seem to.
Instead, they take over His work and replace it with legalism, which causes slander and accusation of other believers, and makes one feel as if they are righteous without having the necessary change of heart towards the spirit of what God really wants concerning things like humility, modesty, and worshiping the Lord.
I try to understand, and I appreciate their zeal, but this is not the way to go. For the record, charismatic churches are not the only ones who use legalism. From my experience, however limited it might be, they all do and you cannot join a church without affirming their brand.
Yet they accuse non church goers of neglecting the faith. Not good. So much accusation and slander among believers. So much spiritual murder. So much wanting things the easy way without taking up the necessary responsibility to Jesus.
And we marvel at our country, never considering that the things we see reflect our issues in the church? We’d rather blame others, forgetting that “judgment begins at the house of God.” I do not rejoice in this, just so you know, but if you must go ahead and keep fighting this battle in the worldly realms of politics and by blaming the unbelievers. See where that gets you.
Even so, to each his own conscience. It is needful for some faithful Christians to speak out politically, but they will have had Jesus work in their hearts first concerning the issues we are being corrected of, otherwise they will get sucked into the spirit of this time.
Anyhow, enough of that digression, but there is a point:
A change of heart is not the same thing as law. That is a fundamental teaching of Jesus. Yet, within mainstream Christianity of all stripes, law abounds—and not the laws of the Spirit that allow Jesus to work on each person according to His wisdom—but the laws of legalistic Christians who attempt to do this work themselves and force their righteousness onto others.
Our righteousness is as filthy rags. It is no wonder that we have so many Christians with hearts of guile.
I am one of them, by the way.
However, I trust in Jesus and I follow Him above the legalistic Christianity of today—as well the overly liberal Christianity of today who embrace the world, calling good evil and evil good.
How do we expect to gain control over sin—especially the sins of the tongue which are among the hardest to control—if we bridle the wisdom of God with the wisdom of man?
I love the church, I do. I did not always. I was angry, and I know a lot of my anger was because of things I experienced, and this is pride. Jesus works on me, and He works on everyone despite the legalism they are under.
It is so true that “His ways are not our ways nor His thoughts our thoughts for He will abundantly pardon.” Thanks to Jesus for that. I would that more of us were like Him.
His mercy is so incredible that He overlooks our denominational blindness and causes many to grow despite our unfaithfulness. He even calls us to Him when we have abused His sacrifice by condoning sin, forgetting mercy, and by using His word wrongfully.
However, I do not expect that patience to continue without correction. Has not correction already come for many? Do we think this will let up?
Maybe so. I don’t know what the near future holds, but I know what the scriptures say about the Last Days. These are brought about because of the unfaithfulness of the church. So, I will keep saying these things for as long as I am able to say them, unless Jesus changes my heart and shows me a better way.
I don’t claim to know all things. I am not God. I can be wrong about much, but I do not think I am wrong about the large and important issues such as these. I do pray that God will show me His judgements so that I can help His church avoid destruction and deceit, and I have asked Him to stop my mouth if it needs to be stopped. If I am deceived, He has allowed it.
There are many Christians who are against the church. They are malicious and claim “abuse of the blood of Jesus” in the church also, but not in the right spirit. They have a spirit of accusation and destruction. They feel superior as some important person of God. They are harsh and overly critical, and they demand nothing but 100 percent fruit or you will burn in hell. I am not of them, so please do not lump me in with them.
In-fact don’t lump me in with any Christian group—traditional or non. I agree in part with most and I disagree in part with most. I am better than none. God is gracious and I try to obey Him, and I have seen what happens when I don’t. I have tried to avoid doing this work and it was not good for me.
I don’t like writing things in my defense, but sometimes it is needful for those who are at risk of accusing myself and others falsely. Even so, I know that truth is not accusation and I am open to critique. I welcome accountability. If I am blind to something, I want to see it and I love those who would point that out. We need more accountability in our church from those who teach, preach, and so on.
I know writing of myself can be so boring.
let us consider our hearts and all things that are standing in the way of the wisdom of God that would teach our hearts to grow in Jesus. As our hearts become fuller with Him, our actions and words will follow.
It is possible for a person to deceive themselves with shows of righteousness such as false professions of faith, church attendance, and legalism, but these things do not always facilitate the necessary change of heart.
In-fact, these things often hinder the Spirt and bind people to heavy burdens they should not have to carry. Come on now, brothers and sisters. Sound familiar?
With all of this in mind, let’s again read this passage from James 1:
19 Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath:
20 For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God.
21 Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls.
22 But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.
23 For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass:
24 For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was.
25 But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed.
26 If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man’s religion is vain.
27 Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.
If you have something to share, a critique, or a question, please leave a reply. I appreciate hearing from people.