Not to brag, but I have a pretty good Joel Osteen impression. Recently, I’ve moved my over-blinking, big smile, drawl and slow speech with a time of “stand up, hold up your Bible and declare this with me” from my frontal lobe to the cavernous “adios” section of my brain.
Why? Because it’s ungodly. I realized this was doing nothing to bless God or others. It was just putting a guy down for the sake of a few laughs. The purpose of this post is not to defend Joel Osteen’s theology or lack thereof. I know some are thinking, “He’s an ear tickler and embarrassed Christianity on Larry King.” The main subject of this post is not even Joel Osteen—it’s YOU!
For some reason, making fun of people has become an increasingly accepted form of sin in American Christianity. “Let me just shred someone. Then, I’ll giggle. Then I’ll say, ‘just kidding.’”
Proverbs 26:18–19 says, 18 Like a madman who throws firebrands, arrows and death 19 is the man who deceives his neighbor and says, “I am only joking!”
Your words matter! I’m not saying God needs to get in agreement with our words; our words need to get in agreement with God.
Words Connect You to God
Psalm 107:20 says, He sent out his word and healed them, and delivered them from their destruction.
There was a chasm—a grand canyon—between God and man called “sin.” So, God sent His Son—the Word—to span that chasm. Do you know how we receive salvation?
Romans 10:8a says, The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart.
The Bible connects the mouth and the heart many times. So, God reaches us by sending His Word. Words are how we connect with God.
Words Connect Us to Each Other
Proverbs 18:21–22 says, 21 Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruits. 22 He who finds a wife finds a good thing and obtains favor from the Lord.
There is a reason these verses are next to each other. God’s Word is perfect, and He placed every Word in every place for a divine reason.
The way we connect with God is through our words, and the way we connect with people is through our words. Think about whenever you have had a disconnect with someone. Words were involved. They were either involved with what you said or what they said. Words were involved.
If you want a good marriage, watch your mouth. I’m going to say something really strongly: Some of you have a bad marriage because you have a bad mouth. You’re speaking death over your marriage. You’re speaking death over your finances. You’re speaking death over your family. You’re speaking death over your health.
Transition from speaking words of consistent sarcasm to using language as a blessing for your spouse, co-workers, family members and everyone else.
I close by telling you this story: I have served at several churches and two missions organizations. There is a man with whom I used to work, and the guy was a star. He had so much charisma. However, he had one major problem—sarcasm. This guy was so sarcastic that it was nauseating. Now, he is out of the ministry. I believe his mouth ran him out of his calling.
Sarcasm, in particular, can ruin you. I like to rib my buddies and all of that stuff, but putting others down for the sake of a few laughs is both immature and ungodly.
Whether it’s Joel Osteen or the guy in the cubicle next to you, when you talk to or about others, use words that edify and encourage!
This article originally appeared here.