“Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit.”
There is life in the power of the tongue. We release life when we use our speech truthfully and with purpose. The story of Lazarus is one of the most powerful and miraculous accounts in the Bible. When Jesus was told about Lazarus’ death, he decided to go to Bethany. Martha, Lazarus’ sister, met him and said, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died. But even now I know that God will give you whatever you ask him.” Jesus told Martha, “Your brother will come back to life.” This first statement from Jesus was already a declaration on its own. Jesus said this with full confidence and faith that Lazarus was going to be alive. There was no seed of doubt in his tone.
When Jesus asked the burial stone to be moved, Martha became worried about the smell since Lazarus has already been buried for four days. Jesus responded with full authority and said, “Did I not tell you that if you believe, you will see the glory of God?” Shortly after, he commanded Lazarus to “come out,” and Lazarus came out fully clothed with strips of linen.
This account is a significant message of how the tongue can have the power to release life. The tongue can be a force of good or evil, which is why we must choose our words with purpose and dignity. How often do we utter meaningless and hurtful words to others? How much encouragement and light do we speak? God has given us the gift of spoken word, and we must use this gift wisely and for the benefit of others.
When we’re on the road and a car cuts in front of us, we tend to yell out bad things and curse the driver, maybe even going to the point where we say, “I hope you crash.” When we’re annoyed at a sibling or when we’re fighting with them, we can say horrible things like, “I wish you were never born.” We can speak these things out thoughtlessly, but what a horrible thing it would be if ten seconds later, we see the car that cut us get out of control and crash into the railings, catching fire as soon as it does. The heat of the moment gets to us. Our emotions tend to overwhelm us and this could cause us to say things we might eventually wish we never said. This is why we have to be very careful about the way we use our words and the way we speak out declarations without a second thought.
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