“But I say to you that for every careless word that people speak, they will give an accounting for it in the Day of Judgment. For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.” (Matthew 12:36-37). We open with this admonition from Jesus not to condemn anyone, but just as a heads-up including for myself. If you enjoy sharing God’s word, read on with expectation.
There are people who are called to speak the Word of God: prophets, evangelists, and preachers for example. And then there are the rest of us. However, the cost of being God’s spokesperson can be high even as the privilege is sweet.
Speaking God’s Word compels us to say unsettling things, even to people that we love. You see, being God’s mouthpiece requires that we speak without prejudice, even to family and friends. God requires that His spokespersons share His passions. If you think the last sentence through you will realize that God’s prophets often tend to live lonely, misunderstood lives. And while it is a privilege to feel what God feels; His true prophets do not tend to be composed, refined, and clinical. Instead they tend to be ragged and raw, often overcome by the message that they must deliver. It was said that Jeremiah the prophet literally entered into the anguish of God. Now if you still feel compelled to speak for God read on.
Because of the sacredness of His message, God demands a pure spokesperson. And since most of us are not perfect, God relentlessly purifies His messengers. He will not accept a conflict between the content of His message and the character of His messenger. So, all who would speak for God must realize that He will narrow that gap, between content and character, aggressively through a lifelong cycle of strenuous sanctification.
We tend to forget that heaven is the minority of people’s destination: “The way is narrow and few are those who find their way to life” (Matthew 7:14). So it is important, in fact it is commanded, that we all share God’s gospel message. And if you have been given a unique calling and skill to speak God’s word, do not hide it under a bushel. God will give further messages to those who will submit to His refining processes. And He will release those who resist Him, those who prefer travelling an easier path; and He will also remove the joy of speaking authoritatively for Him. So if you feel the calling, speak out boldly and continue to put your trust in God’s will for you.
Big Mouth, part two:
“Blessed is the person who trusts in the Lord and whose trust is the Lord. For he will be like a tree planted by water, that extends its roots by a stream and will not fear when the heat comes.” (Jeremiah 17:7-8).
Jeremiah’s verse should also be received as an encouragement by those who want to step out for God. However let me add a caution. While it is true that those who have trusted in Christ have a new nature and their sin is covered by grace, it is also true that our old nature is still with us and will be with us until our final liberation from this earth. Jesus has two natures: deity and humanity. We also have two natures: redeemed and fallen. And our new nature in Christ is in constant battle with the old. We continue to sin even as we live forgiven, and the person who thinks they are without sin is a misguided fool.
This sobering reality should not discourage us, for though we are marred we are yet in the Potter’s divine hands and He is skillfully making us anew into another vessel: Eph 2:10. So we should live neither with the false assumption that we are sinless and perfect, nor with the despair of being ever bound by sin. “As each one has received a special gift, employ it in serving one another as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. Whoever speaks, is to do so as one who is speaking the utterances of God; whoever serves is to do so as one who is serving by the strength which God supplies; so that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belongs the glory and dominion forever and ever” (1 Peter 4:10-11). Believers should always live with hope and trust in Jesus: Heb 11:1.
Now Discipleship and/or Bible Study is my passion. However, knowing the Bible and God’s word is worthless if it is not applied in our lives. The Word is only transformative if we obey it (Ps 119:9). And none of us wants to be another Judas Iscariot. As my opening lines attest, I will be held accountable for what I share with you, so pray for me and my big mouth. That said however, when ships are sinking, those who care shout commands; they do not remain quiet.
– Carlos M.