1Pe 1:15 But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;
So I have to ask myself, "are you holy in all manner of conversation"? Is my tongue, what I speak, a distinctive that identifies me as a "new creation" in YESHUA? To me, this is a very sobering question. I mean, I really do watch it......at times. But at other times, I get caught up in conversation, that I regret having ever been a part of.
In thinking about this as I write, I thought maybe I'd go to the book of James and remind myself of what he had to say about the tongue.......
Jas 3:1 My brethren, be not many masters, knowing that we shall receive the greater condemnation.
Oh that's comforting..... :'(
Then I decided to read Adam Clarke's Comment on this verse. So as to not be too long and overwhelm you, I'll only share what he said about the first part of the text.....
"Be not many masters - Do not affect the teacher’s office, for many wish to be teachers who have more need to learn. There were many teachers or rabbins among the Jews, each affecting to have The truth, and to draw disciples after him. We find a caution against such persons, and of the same nature with that of St. James, in Pirkey Aboth, c. i. 10: Love labor, and hate the rabbin’s office.
This caution is still necessary; there are multitudes, whom God has never called, and never can call, because he has never qualified them for the work, who earnestly wish to get into the priest’s office. And of this kind, in opposition to St. James, we have many masters - persons who undertake to show us the way of salvation, who know nothing of that ways and are unsaved themselves. These are found among all descriptions of Christians, and have been the means of bringing the ministerial office into contempt. Their case is awful; they shall receive greater condemnation than common sinners; they have not only sinned in thrusting themselves into that office to which God has never called them, but through their insufficiency the flocks over whom they have assumed the mastery perish for lack of knowledge, and their blood will God require at the watchman’s hand. A man may have this mastery according to the law of the land, and yet not have it according to the Gospel; another may affect to have it according to the Gospel, because he dissents from the religion of the state, and not have it according to Christ. Blockheads are common, and knaves and hypocrites may be found everywhere." - Adam Clarke 1829
Evidently this was a huge problem when the text was written by St James. Equally a cancer during the times of Adam Clarke. How much more, infinitely more, with the introduction of the internet to world society and the world we live in today?
Being a teacher, among other things, I shudder and tremble within as I read this myself. Am I really called to do this? Or is it just my "good intention"? I've tried to stop many times. I've deactivated my FB account many times, determined to walk away from what I do. That hardly ever lasted more than 24 hours, and I'm right back at it. I've been writing online for well over 20 years, 10 on FB. I simply cannot stop.
I study, a lot. This fuels the flame within. My heart is to present TRUTH and nothing more. Nothing less either. But I know I'm not perfect. HIS word is perfect. So I try to peach and teach the WORD, as the LORD gives me utterance. Still when I read Adam Clarke's words, I tremble. This had better be HIS calling, or I will be greatly condemened.
Then I read the comments of other people, debates, contentions, so much of it personal opinion, or parroting what other preachers as described by Bro Clarke above, have spoken or written. People flashing in anger, blocking themselves, one from another. Division abounding everywhere. I tremble. Here's why.......
Joh_8:38 I speak that which I have seen with my Father: and ye do that which ye have seen with your father.
If we are to "do the things that HE did", would not HIS statement here apply equally to all of us, not just teachers? Even more so with teachers and preachers? What if we did not open our mouths, except to speak what HE bids us to?
Joh_5:43 I am come in my Father's name, and ye receive me not: if another shall come in his own name, him ye will receive.
I read such lame things of others, who teach/preach not according to sound doctrine, and I cringe. Some of these of great noteriety, and people overwhelm them with praise. They speak philosophy and personal opinion, or parrot that of others, and so called believers rave over what they have to say. But let a prophet (Not to be confused with a "profit") speak or write, and there's silence. Silence so loud it can be heard around the world.
See, personal opinion and philosophy appeals to the unregenerate, whereas the WORD is the bread of life for the child of HAYAH (I AM). He/she craves TRUTH, and has a passion for speaking/writing only that. No time to discuss religion. No time for world events. No time for sports. SOULS ARE GOING TO HELL. What is of greater importance than that. Tragically many of these spent their lives serving mammon in a steeple house, and were quite successful at it, as man counts success. The people perish, for a lack of knowledge. Perish into the fires of HELL. They listened to a lie, that someone said was the TRUTH. They trusted what was spoken to them as being TRUTH. But they would not lift a hand to pick up the BIBLE and search it out for themselves to see if was indeed TRUE. Babies that refuse to feed themselves. Yet they are long on opinion as if there were Hebrew/Greek scholars.
Then along comes the internet, and everyone is a preacher/teacher. They state their opinion with passion, but speak or write little to no scripture to support what they write. If they post scripture, it is usually out of context, or sorely lacks the whole counsel of scripture on the matter. Teachers, preachers, greater condemnation.
Then I look in the mirror........ the mirror of the WORD, and I shake, I tremble. My gut wrenches within. And I ask, "is it I"?