Scripture: “As it is written in Isaiah the prophet: Behold, I will send my messenger before your face, who will prepare your way; the voice of one crying in the wilderness—Prepare the way of the Lord, make his paths straight…John appeared…” (Mark 1:2-4a)
Observation: A little convoluted sentence, the structure is difficult, but a clear point can be unraveled: As it is written by Isaiah the prophet, John appeared to prepare the way of the Lord.
As it is written…
Analysis: Significant stuff can be found in the beginning of chapters.
I remember in Literature the following general outline was taught: Say what you are going to say; Say it; then say what you said (wrap it up).
It doesn’t always work out with these three points but most times it does.
What was brought to my attention/memory this morning with my wife in devotions was “It is written.”
I have wondered why in many arguments or “spirited discussions” I have succumbed to “I believe” rather than “It is written.” “I believe (this or that)” or “I don’t believe (this or that)” and add the force of emotion or volume of voice; fire in the eyes and bunching of hands makes for what has constituted support or “force of argument” for many of my so-called discussions.
What I should do is to start thinking, “because it is written.” Harder, yes. For me, the preface “I believe…” is a lazy way of supporting my lack of thinking—after all, who should be able to argue with my personal belief?
If I believe “this”, and someone else believes “that”, there is an intellectual stalemate—persuasion stops, especially as it applies to attempting to communicate the Gospel. Paul was so very good about persuasion. See Acts 17 for reference.
So, what do I do? As it written, let my yes be yes and my no be no. As it is written let my speech be with salt (preservative and tasty). As it is written, let my answers be gentle, reasonable, and persuasive. As it is written, let my tongue be without fire (anger or sharpness) and be full of humility.
As the Word indicates, my mouth will demonstrate of what is in my heart, and if deficiency is found, repent of my wicked and evil ways.
“Like apples of gold in settings of silver, is a word fitly spoken.” (Prov 25:11)
As it is written…
Prayer: Lord Jesus, you know that my mouth has always been a downfall to me. I am grateful for the lessons learned and the testing to assure that continue to watch the effects of my pie-hole and that it communicates your Word and life. May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord. (Ps 25:1