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Out of the Overflow

Words of Faith Final

Out of the Overflow

Words of Faith 3-19-2021

Dr. Jeffrey D. Hoy © 2021

Faith Fellowship Church - Melbourne, FL

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Ephesians 4

  [29] Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. [30] And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.   [31] Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice.   [32] Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.  


       Do not grieve the Holy Spirit. Did you know that the Holy Spirit sometimes is grieved with us? How might we do such a thing? Anytime that we resist the Spirit or deliberately rebel against Scripture, we surely grieve the Spirit.  Specifically, this passage points to the way we treat people and the manner in which we speak. 

      The context of this statement is in the realm of the tongue.  Some of the things we say or listen to will grieve the Holy Spirit. This surely applies to our personal conversations and any electronic conversations-- emails, texting, and social network posts. 

       The truth is that we cannot get away from the Holy Spirit.  He will never leave us or forsake us, not even on a computer! We cannot leave him out of some places or keep Him away from certain conversations.  He is a part of every place that we go and every conversation that we enter into.  And the way we speak, type, or text can grieve the Holy Spirit.

        The Holy Spirit is grieved when we speak or listen to poisonous things.  When we say things that are hurtful, not helpful.  When we have a conversation, that tears people down.  When we utter things or type thoughts that do not benefit those who are listening or meet a need.  These things are grievous to the Spirit. When the Holy Spirit is grieved, He gives witness within us.

       So, why is it that some are able to speak, type or listen to things that grieve the Spirit?  Unbelievers do not have the Spirit within them to grieve, but what about believers?  If we speak, type, or listen to poisonous or hurtful things, we may grow so accustomed to that diet that we are numb as a result.  Paul spoke of – those "whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron" (1 Timothy 4:2). Our sensitivity to the Holy Spirit can be seared by exposure to such things to the point that we do not feel His grief.

       So how do we shut this sort of thing down?

       With electronic communication it is best to have some personal rules of engagement, the first of which is-- Don’t engage.  Email battles always end badly.  Chat rooms are notoriously foolish.  Public arguments on social networks are easily misunderstood and hurtful.  If there is an issue big enough to engage, do it personally.

      We can also prepare ourselves to respond to poisonous talk or gossip by redirecting the conversation.  When criticism comes up, we can ask-- Have you gone to that person?  Or-- Are you asking me to go with you to that person?  Or-- Let's stop and PRAY for that person. Sincere prayer always shuts down gossip.

      But the issue is deeper. Jesus said that the tongue reveals a heart issue.  "Out of the overflow of the heart, the mouth speaks. The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in him.  I tell you that men will have to give account on the day of judgment for every careless word they have spoken. For by your words, you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned."  Matthew 12:34-37

      The truth is that if our words are septic, it is because our heart is septic.  If our heart is septic, we need an antiseptic.  The Holy Spirit and the Word of God are the antiseptic.  The answer is a continual lifestyle of repentance-- putting off your old self, being made new in the attitude of your mind and putting on the new self.

      The Apostle Paul wrote to the Philippians... Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think about such things (Philippians 4:8). 

       We can choose where to focus our thoughts and then speak out of those thoughts. We often will say that we have surrendered our lives and hearts to Jesus.  But how is that being reflected in our words and thoughts shared. Are the words I hear coming out of my mouth from the new self or the old?  Are the words that I speak or type helpful, good, and of benefit?  Words that build up others? Words that meet needs?  Words that benefit those who listen and convey grace?


         Father God, renew my soul and Spirit.  Fill me to overflowing with words that honor You and bless others.  Give me a heart that overflows with helpful, good, and beneficial utterances.  Give me a tongue that is surrendered to You, that builds up others and conveys Your grace.  In Jesus’ Name.


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© Jeffrey D. Hoy 2010, 2021

Dr. Jeffrey D. Hoy - Faith Fellowship Church (EFCA)       

2820 Business Center Blvd.

Melbourne, Florida 32940 (321)-259-7200

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The Words of Faith devotion is published five days a week by E-mail, excluding Federal holidays. Please feel free to forward this devotion to a friend who might be blessed by this devotion. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture is quoted from the New International Version (R) of The Holy Bible. Copyright (c) 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved. Words of Faith (c) 1997, 2010 Jeffrey D. Hoy. All rights reserved. Permission is granted to forward this copyrighted material or use portions of it with appropriate notation of the source for non-profit purposes.