Garbage In, Garbage Out
Can both fresh water and salt water flow from the same spring? My brothers and sisters, can a fig tree bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Neither can a salt spring produce fresh water.
James uses what is obvious in nature to make his concluding points and exhortation: the fruit reveals the source. Yes, there will be times when we all slip up with our speech, but James’ point makes it clear that a renewed heart should be known by a renewed speech. If your heart is pure, out of it will come pure speech (Lk. 6:45), but the converse is also just as true: when your words are defiled so is your heart.
Critical words come from a critical heart. Arrogant words come from an arrogant heart. Bitter words come from a bitter heart. There is no running away from this reality, friend, and so the question we all must face on a daily basis is this: what’s the condition of our heart? When you mess up and spew forth-unholy speech, you have to stop the presses immediately and ask God, like David did, to search your heart and reveal what is wrong at the source (Psalm 139:23-24).
If you are a follower of Jesus Christ, that includes your tongue and consequently your speech. Has your heart been renewed? Has your mind been transformed? Has God replaced that heart of stone with a heart of flesh? Then let fresh water flow from that fresh source!
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