Here are the red letters for today’s study:
But 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.”
These word from Jesus were spoken during a heated discussion with the Pharisees but I believe they are intended for all of us. The Pharisee were part of the religious establishment at the time of Jesus. St. Paul was thought to be part of this group before his conversion. The Pharisees were a group that was fixated on man-made rules whereas Jesus was focused on God’s love so there were bound to be some conflicts between them. After all Jesus was an out-of-the-box kind of guy. Jesus had several bouts with them and he seldom had kind words to say. Remember that Jesus was a Jew so he was talking about some of the leader of his own religion! Anyway, so much for the background; let’s move on to the words themselves.
Words like the these I tend to classify among the “hard sayings” of Jesus. Words such as these are ignored by many in the Christian community since they seem to be in conflict with “faith alone”. But, they are so frequent in the Bible I personally don’t see how we can just pass over them. Jesus seems to say that God is listening to everything you say throughout your life and you will have to give account for your verbalizations on the day of judgment. Many Christians today say that God is not keeping score in your life as he has promised to forget all your sins if you only declare that Jesus is your Lord and Savior. Some also add repentence to the list. These words don’t seem to say that at all. Was Jesus mistaken? Did he take all these and similar words back later? I don’t know. It is a good thing that to God ten thousand years is like a day. If not I might have some angry people in line behind me on judgment day because I definitely have some words that will need accounting.
Will those careless words keep us out of heaven. If we have true faith definitely not! But, I believe that Jesus wants us to live by these words and others like them while we are on earth. We should do it as deep appreciation for what Jesus did to give us our salvation.
I’m going to be away from my computer for the next few days so will miss some of my regular postings. See you next week,