A Proper Response

But no man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. With it we bless our God and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the similitude of God.  Out of the same mouth proceed blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be so. James 3:8-10 (NKJV)

Okay, we just had three devotionals in a row based off of Romans 12:14 to, “Bless those who persecute you.”  But in the same verse the Apostle Paul repeats his exhortation to bless those who persecute us, by saying, “Bless and do not curse.”  It’s as if God wants to drive a point home with us.  “Listen here children, I want you to bless those who are “going” to persecute you, and I want to repeat it again so you hear me clearly, ‘I want you to bless them, and do not curse them.”

From what I have observed, we are prone to verbally attacking those who are persecuting us, and it may even lead into eventually cursing them at some point.  So maybe we don’t actually curse or wish evil upon those who persecute us—perhaps we might just let them know what we are thinking about by telling them off. How many times have you heard someone say something like, “Man, I gave them a piece of my mind. I bet they’ll think twice before doing that again…” 

Well for those times when we choose to do this, we should probably know we have just been deceived by the enemy into thinking we were victorious by speaking up and setting someone straight, when in fact we have just lost.  Pride has caused us to speak like a fool. Instead of showing grace, mercy, and forgiveness, we are now as guilty as those who have offended us.

In the mouth of a fool is a rod of pride, But the lips of the wise will preserve them. Proverbs 14:3 (NKJV)

Truth is, we have scientific research revealing great evidence of how we are physically paying the price for our verbal rants in retaliations.  In fact, most of our high blood pressure and other anxiety-related diseases we are suffering from are in fact being caused by persistent attitudes of resentment and hostility.  

When we choose to acknowledge Satan as the true origin of all our bitterness, pain, grudges, and unforgiveness, we can then choose to lay these all down at the foot of the cross, and allow the grace of God to wash them away. As we do this we will be highly effective in our Christian walk, and others will witness the power of Christ in our lives.  

We need to remember and identify, God is going to allow us to experience various trials and tribulations from time to time, to exercise our faith.  He will use us in a powerful way when we choose to bless those who persecute us.  The only question left is, Will you let Him?

Don’t let the circumstances of this world lead you away from the truth and promises contained within the Scriptures of God. Choose to “bless”, and not curse, those who persecute you.  You can do this by the power of the Holy Spirit who lives within you.

STUDY QUESTION: What can we learn from the Scriptures contained within this devotional with regard to our speaking to others when we are persecuted?

PERSONAL INVENTORY: Are you struggling with your tongue during times of persecution?

PRACTICAL APPLICATION: Ask God for forgiveness for those times you’ve said inappropriate things to others, and if possible, ask them for forgiveness as well.  Allow God to do a work within your heart today.

PRAYER FOR TODAY: Father, thank You for Your love, mercy, and grace upon my life.  Thank You for giving me an example to live my life by.  Help me to remember and acknowledge those times where we have said inappropriate things during conversations with others.  In Jesus’ precious name, amen…


Be Blessed, Pastor Scott

Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000