It was exactly two weeks ago that I was with you, right? We spoke about a topic that has been important in my life What we talked about was… do you remember what we talked about? You don’t remember…. it can’t be. It was called “Self Control”. We talked about how important it is for us, for our spiritual growth to learn to dominate our passions, our reactions, and to try to reach the ultimate goal which is: Love. Do you remember what is the fundamental ingredient necessary to reach this goal? It’s Faith. It says: “We have to add to our faith, virtue, and to virtue, knowledge, and to our knowledge, self-control.” In other words, we’re going up a ladder. The top of the ladder, he says, is love. Because God is Love. Do we want to reach God? We have to go up this ladder. There is no other way, that’s found in the word. This was found in 1 Peter. He wrote this wonderful recipe. Today I just remind you. Today we’re going to talk about another important ingredient for self-control:The Power of Words.The Bible says that the Word of God made everything that exists. Of course, we don’t have that kind of power in our words? Or do we? Do we have this power? “Do it,” and it’s done?
God made us in his likeness, but not exactly alike. Not exactly alike, but in one thing we are similar. The power of our words is so tremendous we sometimes ignore how much words can do in our hearts, and the hearts of our listeners Remember that speech has two components: one who speaks, and one who listens Now, I’m speaking, and you are listening. I hope that the word of God has such an effect in you that we become better every day. But, there are also destructive words. It says in Proverbs, this verse has a big impact on me, Proverbs 18:21. From verse 20From the fruit of their mouth a person’s stomach is filled;
with the harvest of their lips they are satisfied.The tongue has the power of life and death,
and he who loves it will eat its fruit.How powerful is the tongue, brothers?
Lets read it again.“From the fruit of their mouth a person’s stomach is filled”Brothers, what are words for? Why did the Lord teach us to speak, or give us the gift of speaking? Simply, to fill up our stomachs. Wasn’t it by words that you got your job? If you don’t speak and say “I need a job,” are they going to give it to you? No. So, words are marvelous. Words open doors. But it depends on what comes out of our mouth, for the door to open. Or, it will close. This is the reality. We have in our mouths an enormous power. This afternoon, I want us to start to learn to use it. Because if we don’t learn how to use our words, we will have a lot of problems in our lives. As we said last week, there are people who’s mouth spew out only snakes and toads. There are many people who learned to speak, and learned to speak badly. The more serious problem for human beings is that this beautiful gift of speech is not the first sense that is developed, but rather hearing. Did you realize that? The hearing is developed first. And when the ear hears, what does it hear? What mom and dad say. Whether it be good or bad, there it is. And when the kid learns to speak, what does he say? What he learned. Simply what he learned. We had five kids, with all our five kids, the pediatricians said the same thing. When the kid had his first birthday, the first thing that the doctor says is, “Look, is he saying the bad word yet?” What bad word? You all know what the bad word is. The first word that comes out of his mouth is bad. Why? First of all, it’s an easy word to say. Secondly, what do the parents do when the kid says the bad word? “Hahahahaha…” He said the bad word! He’s growing up. “He’s maturing. He’s advancing”
Brothers, truly he is advancing in life, but on what path? On the bad path, of course, the bad path. The serious problem is that we sometimes learn many things from our parents. Good and bad things. Speech is a gift from God. It opens up opportunities for jobs, helps us to relate with others, … it’s a marvelous thing.
Good things, and bad things. Speech is a gift from God, of course. It is a miracle from God. But as we said, hearing is the first sense that’s developed in children. What we hear is what we learn to speak. Adults, we’re going to make a repository of words, concepts, knowledge, and experience. All of these things make us who we are. Because really, as psychologists say, “we are the product of all our thoughts” What we think is what we are. If you look at the mirror and say “how ugly I am!” Yes, you are, because you believed you were. That is your own truth. The power of your mind, holds a lot of power. The Lord Jesus said in Luke 6:45, this is a beautiful verse, it says,“The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart,”“and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart.”“For out of the overflow of his heart his mouth speaks.”Here, brothers, is the problem. We have filled our hearts with everything we have been taught. Good things, and bad things. So what comes out of our mouth? What our hearts are full of. If our hearts are full of peace, calm, goodness, faith, the fruit of the spirit, what will come out of my mouth? fruits of the spirit, of course. A fountain can’t produce both salty and fresh water at the same time. It can’t. It shouldn’t be like that. But we humans often don’t use words correctly. We use our language wrong, and sometimes complain about the results. The power of words has done so many things, brothers. There have been wars, there have been conquests, there have been murders; Lives have been saved as well, If not, you and I would not be here, because thanks to a special word, we are here.
But the human word has done all these things: Love, hate crimes, wars, conquests, Finally, all things in history has been done by what abounds in the heart of men. We have mentioned Proverbs. It says, “Life and death is in the power of the tongue” “He who loves it will eat of its fruit.” Question: Do you love your tongue? or no? He who loves it will eat of its fruit. Do you love your tongue? We’re in bad shape if we don’t love it. It’s a part of our body. I love from the tip of my finger to the end of my foot that is the ugliest, I love with all my heart. It’s me, it’s a part of me. How can I not love my tongue? Of course I love it. But the fruit of this tongue can be pleasant, or the opposite, which brings torture to our lives. What comes out of our mouth will bring forth fruit. If you go to a job with a positive attitude, saying, “This job is mine,” the Lord will give it to you. But you have to ask for it We talked in the morning about making making great, ambitious plans. But give this plan to our God. That God will be the one to decide, and to guide us, giving us what we want. But if you look, and look, and look in a selfish way, it could be that you are going in error. But if you give your plans to God it’s different. “From the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks” The power of words is so great brothers, that we can give death or life. I’m going to give you an example, two examples. When my wife was young she worked in a store, there were a lot of people there working. A boy came in, he climed ladders to get things, move boxes, and he was at work every day. One day, as you know, my wife is still mischievous; sorry, I love you a lot. This time she said to this boy, with a scared face: “Francisco, what happened?” You’ve got spots all over you, all over your face. “What happened to you?” And the boy got scared by what she said, and didn’t even have the courage to see if it was true. He wouldn’t even look in the mirror, because he believed the words of a mischievous girl. It was a simple joke, a practical joke. Do you know what happened? He didn’t come to work the next day. He had spots all over him. It gave him an allergy. “He believed it too much.” Yes, he believed it. Now, the question is: did my wife’s words carry sickness? She said, “You’ve got spots on you” Did this bring sickness? or not? Yes, these were words of sickness. Or is it normal to have spots? Of course it was a lie, we need to understand that. It was a lie.
But with words, there are two important things. The transmitter, and the receiver. In this case, imagine that you have a bucket, and it’s full of oil. If you want to add water, what happens? The bucket is full of oil and you pour in water…. The oil runs out. The water stays in. Right? If this were reverse, the bucket full of water and you pour oil in the bucket, what happens? The oil is repelled and runs out.
So the transmitter and receiver are fundamental things of speech If I say to you, “The word of God says that whoever believes in me, the Lord says, even if he’s dead, will live.” Do you believe it? It’s the word of God. You are believing truth. But if I say to you, “You have spots on you, all over you.” This receiver, if he’s full of something stronger than mine he will repel what I say. He will say, “This brother is crazy. This is not true.” But if the receiver is weak, he will accept what I say, believe it, and get sick. This is a law.
From my wife’s word, a simple joke, the poor kid got sick. A second example. They tell this story, I don’t know if it’s true or not, but it appears in many articles and books. Of a public speaker who talks about the power of words. He’s convincing people that your word has power to do whatever you want. A person in the crowd stood up and said, “Excuse me, but I completely disagree with what you say” “Power is not in my words, but in my mind.” On the side of Francisco, this kid who got sick. His mind was weak, and words made him sick. This man said, “I don’t believe you, because power stems from the mind, not words.” The speaker replied harshly. He said something like, “Shut up, idiot, dummy, sit down and be quiet.” The man, hearing these words, stood up and started insulting him. This is the logical reaction. He insults him, and he says harsh things, and finally the speaker says, calm down please. Excuse me. I ask you to forgive me. The words came out, I didn’t mean to offend you. Excuse me please. The man calmed down, he also asked forgiveness from the people, apologizing for his bad words. The speaker said, “Did you see that? With words, I stoked you up,” “And with words, I calmed you down. Power stems from the word.” Now, there was no argument about that. Do we believe this? Is power in words, or in the mind? The word, or the mind? What do you say? Matthew chapter 15, verse 11. Starting with verse 10“Jesus called the crowd to him and said, ‘Listen and understand’.”Two important things, that are fundamental: Listen, and understand.“What goes into a man’s mouth does not make him ‘unclean,’ but what comes out of his mouth, that is what makes him ‘unclean.’”Verse 18:“But the things that come out of the mouth come from the heart, and these make a man ‘unclean.’”So where did my wife’s words get their power? From her heart. She wanted to play a joke. And this man who calmed the people at the conference, From where the power come from? From his heart. He knew that with his words he could control people. But where is knowledge? Here. Francisco, the first example, this poor kid had an open mind; open to anything. And words of sickness came. He got sick. The man at the conference who got angry was a very delicate man. Maybe he was defensive, thinking, “What are they trying to say?” When he was insulted, he got angry, and lost control. Brothers, the Lord says that “From the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks.” No word will come out on its own. It will come out because it’s deep in our hearts. We are part of this word, and such, they come out. This is true. Words can give life, or give death. The words of my wife gave sickness? Yes, but it was necessary … that the receiver was appropriate. Said to another person, they would have have looked in the mirror and known it wasn’t true. When someone says something to you from the Bible, look in your Bible to see if what is said is true. Don’t just believe it. Because you could be accepting a word of a person, and maybe they’re not even in the Bible. But if there are written in the Bible, believe them. There they are. We have to be careful. There is a transmitter,.. and a receiver. They have to be in certain tonality to affect each other. James chapter 3 verse 8. We saw this verse briefly the last time. James 3:8. Says:“…but no man can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.”“With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in God’s likeness.”“Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers, this should not be.”This shouldn’t be. In other words, he’s saying, learn to control your speech, and your words. Because if you stay on this path, you will have problems. Verse 2 says,“We all stumble in many ways. If one never offends in what he says, he is a perfect man, able to keep his whole body in check.”“Brother Rudy, I think that the majority of Bible verses speaking of the heart is the mind. The heart does not think.”Right. The heart does not think. But it’s a symbol that the Bible uses to teach us that So then where is training for self-control? In the tongue. Everything that is up here will come out. That is, the important things that we treasure. Because there are a lot of things in our heads that aren’t important so we don’t give this it’s importance that it should have. But the things that we give importance to, they are “in our hearts”. They enter into our minds, are assimilated, and they form part of ourselves. For example, When we are born, I don’t know my mom and dad. My eyes see them, …. I see them, We recognize them, and we learn to love them. We were speaking about a method to learn to control our bodies. If we want to become virtuous in something we need to do exercise. We have to strive to achieve the excellence we want to achieve. If I want to be a world champion swimmer, of course not at my age, but if I were young What do I need to do? Swim every day, be persistent, strive, eat nutritious, and triumph. If I don’t do that, I won’t succeed. Here the apostle James says, a way to learn to dominate not only our tongues, but our whole body. What is it? He who controls his tongue is capable of controlling his whole body. Look how beautiful. So then when I learn to speak, when we learn to control our words, control what leaves our mouth, then we are learning to control not only my tongue, but my whole body. And whoever doesn’t offend in word, the apostle says, is a perfect man, a perfect woman. Because he doesn’t offend in word. “I don’t offend” someone said, “but I speak the truth”. Well, some people don’t like the truth. This is why Proverbs also says that lies are delicious to man“The bread of lies is delicious, but in the end his mouth will be full of gravel”But people love to be lied to. But even if we speak the truth, if we do it unkindly or harshly what we are doing is insulting. Not only this, but the word says “capable of controlling his whole body” What does the tongue have to do with the body? We should discuss “body language”. This is very important. I remember when my older kids bothered the younger one. They would call him by the nickname, “Sponge”. The brothers were older He was five years older, the other was about seven years older. This little one would obey when they would call him “Sponge”. My wife said one day, “No more nicknames in this house. Don’t call your little brother “Sponge” any more. He has his name. “Ok mama” he said. From far away, where she didn’t see, he would say “(Sponge, Sponge…..) ” This was body language. There was no speech. Sometimes with our body language we give bad answers. Mom comes and says, you need to do this, and this, … and the child turns around and walks away. What is this? Insolence. Bad behavior. Who did he learn this from? Brothers, going back to what we talked about, our first sense is hearing. We are hearing even before birth. What do we hear? What mom and dad said, the music that they hear, the words they use, If they love each other, their words are loving, and the child will be relaxed. But if they are fighting, what will this creature learn? Do you realize this? The hearing is what feeds our brain, and this is how we learn to speak. When we learn to speak we speak what we have learned. They speak bad words because they learned from their parents, school, whatever but we are learning from childhood what we will be as adults. We learn, and learn, every day we learn new things for our lives So it’s important we learn to use words appropriately. So that our mouths don’t spew out toads and snakes, but rather virtuous things. … Yes?Brother Rudy, do you believe that there are people who have the gift of speech? That is, persuasion, or convincing?Of course. Complete masses can be dominated. There is a science called “Mass Psychology”. Those who study this can control enormous crowds of people. Huge crowds. Convincing them that he is telling the truth. Look at Hitler. A man who had a tremendous ability to pursuade people. According to the Germans, he was doing right. According to God, he was doing a terrible evil. Politicians use demagoguery. Boys use the same demagoguery with girls. The same thing. Words can be used to conquer, or to insult. But the young man who puts on the mask to conquer the girl, she doesn’t know what’s in his heart, his mind. What’s inside? Brothers, The power of our words is tremendous. Yes, sister, there are people that can pursuade you, Just ask the brother, you know the story, the lady was robbed of, was it twelve or ten thousand Quetzales? And how did they do it? With their words. It also has a lot to do with the heart of the receiver. In this case, Another story, a brother in the church, very strict, drastically correct in church things. He told me, “I don’t even eat fast-food chicken, because it might not have been slaughtered correctly.” “Because it might have a speck of blood, and I won’t eat it because the Word says ‘don’t eat blood'” But one day he was walking along and some man says to him, “I’ve got something to show you” “I’m afraid to show this to you here. Let’s go to your house and I’ll show you what I have” He was curious, so they went into a place and he took out a think from his shirt. “Look.” he said. “This is a bar of gold that weighs 10 or 20 pounds” It’s pure gold! But they are not going to believe that it’s mine, so I can’t even sell it. But you can sell it. “Buy it from me.” He offered it for 5 or 10 thousand Quetzales. A brother from the church, so strict in his house, strict with biblical norms, left running Went home to find money. His wife asks, “What are you doing?” “Looking for money, don’t worry” “What is this about?” “Don’t worry, I’ll come back and explain” He went, and bought the gold bar, and when he goes to the jewler, he says, “This is lead” Brothers, look: What is in your heart and your mind is what will give you health or sickness. Nothing else, but what you believe. If you believe that it’s a gold bar, you will fall in the trap. This is why we spoke of the transmitter and receiver. The person says something, and the receiver must say, “Is this true?” If the man had gone to the jewler first to test the gold bar, he would not have been deceived. Or maybe he was afraid the opportunity would get away He wouldn’t have fell for it. But we have to be prepared, awake. Brothers, when will Jesus return? Do you know if he will return tonight? Tomorrow? Within the week? When will he come? Do you know when you will die? In the morning we studied the lesson of the man who said, “Soul, take a break, enjoy life, lay in a hammock. You have enough for many years” The Lord called him a fool. Fool, this night your soul is required, and what will happen with what you have saved? Watch, that you don’t fall in temptation. You do not know when the Lord will come. You don’t know the day of your death. We only have one chance: When we are living. That is today. Today is when we must make decisions. I want you to decide to control your tongue. Because from our tongue can come good things or bad things. As Proverbs says, “The soft answer, turns away wrath” One day I got angry with this poor guy for a silly thing. I needed a letter to be written, when I got to the embassy in Mexico, and there were some men with typewriters I found them and said, can you write me this letter for such-and-such? Of course, he said. But for what? For this-and-this. And for who? This and this. And…. He continues a series of questions until I got angry I said, “Look, can you write the letter or not?” Brothers, I was angry; the animal came out. And this man, speaking softly, “excuse me sir, I don’t know how to use the typewriter, but the other man will be here soon.” I felt bad, and ashamed. I had to ask forgiveness for how I had spoken. Brothers, the man who controls his tongue can control his whole body. This is a great truth. This is the invitation this afternoon. Learn to control our words. By our words, we can eat. We can have abundance. But we can lose our jobs as well. The people who say, “I don’t care. I work until 4:30, and if I work another minute, they’ll pay double” Did good words come out? No, bad words came out. One day they will say, we don’t want you anymore. There are others who want to work. None of us are indispensable. We’re all necessary, but not indispensable. We must gain the will of others. This is fundamental for our lives. If someone doesn’t offend in words, he’s perfect. Well, there are solutions for everything. Romans 10:10. This is also a good verse. Starting with verse 9“That if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”People have invented other gospels, right? They add to it, but it’s very clear.“For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved.”What do you share when you talk to your kids? your spouse, friends, co-workers? What comes out of our mouth? bad jokes? Or good advice? “Don’t get angry, calm down”. When a friend with pain comes, what do we say? Do we console them? Or do we make it worse? Brothers, what comes out of our mouth comes from the heart, and as we’ve said before The hearing is the first to be awakened. But since we’ve grown up in a normal family, a corrupt society, we’ve filled ourselves with the things we’ve talked about. Good or bad, there they are. If the bad ones abound, bad words come out. There’s no other way. I frequently hear a proverb that says, “The secret to speaking well, is knowing how to listen.” Obvious. But the secret to speaking bad, is the same thing. Listening. The interesting thing is that we learn who to listen to. Who will we listen to? If I had been born in a family of gangsters, how would I speak? You might not even understand what I’m saying. I’ve heard them speak, and I don’t understand them. One day I was sitting in the car, waiting for my wife, a man came up to me and says, “Give me a stick.” I said, “I don’t have sticks, why?” “Give me a stick.” I said, “I don’t have one.” Later I ask my kids, “What was he asking for?” “He was asking for money” they said. Hasn’t our language decayed! It’s decayed tremendously. So then, the secret for good speaking, is knowing how to listen. This is important. This afternoon we need to think about this. Why should we improve our speech? We’re going to read Ephisians 4 verse 29. This is very important. We’re about to finish“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.”What a beautiful piece of advice. Who are we going to listen to? We read this word, and our words will change. Let nothing bad come out of our mouths. Look at your way of speaking, and look at yourself See if bad words come out when you are angry, or because you learned to speak that way. When we begin to analyze ourselves, we see words that we should begin to eliminate from our language Eliminate them, that’s all. But look at the verse,“that it may benefit (give grace to) those who listen.”God has given you grace. We have spoken of grace. God didn’t see your defects, He saw your human need, and said that we need to learn to love ourselves to be able to love our neighbor. But if I don’t love myself, If I say to myself, “This grey hair is ugly, I’m going to dye it” If I say, “God gave me these ugly curls, I’m going to straighten them” Or if I say, like this guy, I don’t like my color, I’m going to sunbathe to make myself dark Brothers, what are we doing? What are we doing when we despise our characteristics? You’re despising God’s work, because you are God’s unique handiwork. You are valuable, and important. When you have what is valuable, you don’t want to change it. Last weeks lesson taught us a lot about this. “Love your neighbor as yourself” said the doctor of the law. Ok, do it. Put it in practice, Jesus said. What was the point? Love your enemy as yourself. To be able to love even your enemy, I have to love myself especially. If I don’t love myself, how will I love my neighbor? I can’t It’s not possible. So begin by loving ourselves. Understand that my value is because of God’s grace. He gave me his grace. What do I have to do? Share it. We also need to share the blessings that God gives us. If there’s anything we can share, it’s the grace of God. We can share it, because it’s immense. It’s an un-limited richness. The Lord has new mercies for each of us every day. So lets share these mercies with each other. So when we speak, it should be with grace for our hearers. Lets read John 6 verse 66. I say the secret of speaking well is knowing who to listen to. When kids learn to speak from their parents, and they don’t teach them the best Or if they adopt bad things in school, I’ll tell you who you should listen to. The Lord said to that multitude, “He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood will have eternal life.” I will resurrect him in the last day. And the Jews, not knowing what he was saying, said to themselves “And how will we eat this man?” Verse 63“The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you are spirit and they are life.”Do you want to share life? Do you want your words to carry power to people? Do you want these words to give life to your own heart? Fill yourselves. Fill yourselves with these words. Eat them. Drink them. Every day brothers. I make this recommendation to all the Churches of God that I visit. Read your Bible every day, every night, whenever you can, read your Bible. Because these are the only things that can teach us. It’s like being full of water. Fresh water, true water. Nothing can take it out of your head. As He said to the Samaritan, it will be as a spring that wells up to eternal life This is my hope. If we improve our language giving grace to our hearers, practicing, and listen to the words that give life, you will be a fountain of life. To the contrary, you could be a fountain of death. Remember that in the tongue is the power to give life, or give death. Choose life. God bless you. Peace.