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"Sound" Advice

Daily Reading: Titus 2-3


Scripture Focus: Remind them... to speak evil of no one, to avoid quarreling, to be gentle, and to show perfect courtesy toward all people. (Titus 3.1-2)


Devotional Thought: I heard something refreshing this week in "What's on Your Mind?", a men's discussion group at our church. Craig reminded us that we need to know when to "quit listening - even to Fox News!" I immediately thought about how rancorous public discourse has become! It seems we no longer have conversations; we have shouting matches!


I have a feeling that public discourse was anything but friendly even in Paul and Titus' day: "Remind them [the people of the church!] to speak evil of no one, to avoid quarreling, to be gentle, and to show perfect courtesy toward all people" (Titus 3.1-2). All people? Are you sure, Paul? Can't I just be courteous to those I like? Or maybe I can be courteous only to Christians?


Nope.


Timothy Keller, in his book The Reason for God, gives three questions that are good to ask whenever we are speaking to or about another person:

  • Is it necessary? So much of what is said today is just not necessary, filling the room with sound that has no meaning. Wasn't it Will Rogers who said, "Never miss a good chance to shut up"?

  • Is it true? There's a thought! If we would limit what we say to just the truth, the world would be a quieter place! So much of what passes for truth is simply opinion and innuendo.

  • Is it kind? Is it designed for the benefit of others? Does it serve good purposes?

In another place, the Apostle Paul said basically the same thing: "Speak the truth in love!" (Ephesians 4.15). That is "sound advice"!

Prayer: Father, help me to "keep [my] tongue from evil and [my] lips from speaking deceit." By your grace may I speak the truth in love. Amen.

Psalm of the Day: 73 Your hands have made and fashioned me; give me understanding that I may learn your commandments. 74 Those who fear you shall see me and rejoice, because I have hoped in your word. 75 I know, O LORD, that your rules are righteous, and that in faithfulness you have afflicted me. 76 Let your steadfast love comfort me according to your promise to your servant. 77 Let your mercy come to me, that I may live; for your law is my delight. 78 Let the insolent be put to shame, because they have wronged me with falsehood; as for me, I will meditate on your precepts. 79 Let those who fear you turn to me, that they may know your testimonies. 80 May my heart be blameless in your statutes, that I may not be put to shame! (Psalms 119:73-80)

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