It seems the world is on fire with nightmarish events. It is difficult to even mention them without feeling the pain of humanity and calculating the years it might take to repair this societal breach. The aftermath of anger, physical violence, and destruction following George Floyd’s death will likely have even more long term, damaging effects than his tragic death. How can we help? Where do we begin?
In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was formless and void, and darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters. Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness. Genesis 1:1-4 NASB
We find ourselves in a time when darkness seems to have cloaked the earth. People everywhere are crying out to God, “Where is the light?” And just as God faithfully spoke at the creation of all things, He calls us to follow His lead and re-create today. “Let there be...”, God spoke, time and again declaring that which was created by His WORDS to be “very good”. Genesis paints a vivid picture of the power of words. God “said”… God “spoke”… and with His words light separated from darkness, living creatures filled the earth and sky, and every manner of living thing came to be. God created everything with the power of His words. Words created everything from the quanta to the cosmic; and the same breath that called those things that were not as though they were caused man to become a living soul made in the image and likeness of God.
So, how does this discussion of the creative power of God outlined in Genesis address the state of brokenness we find ourselves in today? It seems that Matthew 4:4 indicates that the beginning of all solutions to life’s challenges are found in God’s words. Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God." John 1:14 answers “the why” of that statement.
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God... The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us.
Wow! The infinite, creative power of God is none other than in the living Word: Jesus Christ. At Jesus’ baptism, God, our Heavenly Father introduced His beloved son in this way.
The moment Jesus came up out of the baptismal waters, the skies opened up and he saw God’s Spirit—it looked like a dove—descending and landing on him. And along with the Spirit, a voice: “This is my Son, chosen and marked by my love, delight of my life. Matthew 3:16-17 The Message
This revelation of the Holy Trinity – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit – is an unparalleled illustration of the divine nature of God’s fatherly love, nurturing Spirit, and in the flesh manifestation of His Son as the Living Word. God’s example in this passage calls us to a life of speaking words to confirm all that is good, true, and beautiful. On the Mount of Transfiguration, God spoke again from heaven directing us to listen to the words of His Son.
While he was still speaking, suddenly a bright cloud covered them, and a voice from the cloud said: ‘This is My beloved Son. I take delight in Him. Listen to Him!’ Matthew 17:5 Holman Bible HCSB
What loving words of affirmation and confidence the Father bestowed upon Jesus! How do the Father’s words compare to those spoken over you as a child? “You can do anything you put your mind to.“ “You'll amount to nothing.” “You're going to grow up to be...” What words come to your mind? No doubt you’ll agree that certain words spoken over you in childhood have had a lasting effect: for good and for bad. Just a few spoken phrases can shape who we will become… who we believe we are.
Made in the image and likeness of God, we possess an inner knowledge that there’s life and death in the power of our words. Years ago, my wife and I wrote a book in which we made this claim: “What you say you beget.” (not get). Your spoken words are more than possession, but in fact, acts of creation. Although in a much smaller reality than God's powerful eternal Words which created every living thing, our words also spring to life as we imitate the Master. Grasp the full reality of the claim in the verse that follows.
Peace, peace, to him who is far off [both Jew and Gentile] and to him who is near! says the Lord; I create the fruit of his lips, and I will heal him [make his lips blossom anew with speech in thankful praise]. Isaiah 57:19 Amplified Bible, Classic Edition What the great prophet Isaiah is saying is this: what you say, God creates (produces). Notice that you first say it and then will see it. Romans 4:17 repeats this mind provoking theme when God says he will cause Abraham and his wife Sarah to bear a child of their flesh in old age. By calling things which did not exist as if they already did, the miraculous happened! As it is written, ‘I have made you a father of many nations’ in the presence of Him whom he believed—God, who gives life to the dead and calls those things which do not exist as though they did; This is the essence of faith! … The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith… Romans 10:8 King James Bible What we speak we BEGET!
The following is a little technique I have taught for some years. It illuminates the fact that what you really believe you produce when you speak. Matthew 12:24 makes this point crystal clear. For out of the abundance of the heart (inner beliefs) the mouth speaks. If you simply follow every statement you make with the words “Sure Enough”, it will tell you what you believe and what you are creating with your lips. Try it. “I am always on time.” Sure Enough. “I am always late.” Sure Enough. This is too difficult for me.” Sure Enough. “I can do anything I put my mind to.” Sure Enough. “You are a pain in the neck” Sure Enough “I have divine health.” Sure Enough! Get the idea? WARNING: Speaking negative words (of the flesh) produces negative results. Speaking from the Spirit (the Word) produces spiritual solutions (John 3:6). Now replace the affirmations of the flesh above with the promises of scripture believing that God creates the fruit of your words (confession of faith). ”I am the righteousness of God in Christ.” Sure Enough. “I can do all things through Christ Jesus who strengthen me.” Sure Enough. “By His stripes (beatings) I am healed.” Sure Enough. “As I wait upon the Lord my strength is renewed.” Sure Enough. “I have the mind of Christ.” Sure Enough. Try closely monitoring your words and “go to” phrases for one week. You are about to come face to face with what makes you and what breaks you. It won’t take long for that light bulb to go off in your head and weigh in on the power of your words.
What does all this discussion of the power of words have to do with the division, civil unrest, and violence sweeping the country right now? It’s this: what is occurring is the consequence of the battle of words. We are in the midst of a organized movement to control our beliefs and speech. Social and political pressure to remake our language by redefining words and re-writing history is aimed in particular at baby Boomers and Christians. As our culture has become more and more secularized in recent decades, our children have been groomed to reject Biblical “absolutes” and our Constitutional foundations for something more “fluid”. This movement and bias is rendering natural, clear and useful communication between people difficult at best and often results in contentious debate and worse. At the least, political correctness, is an attempt to control another person's words: their freedom of speak and expression of beliefs. Certain phraseology is demanded as the only means to peace or civility between factions. “Black Lives Matter” versus “All Lives Matter” is the most volatile of the day. New words or old ones assigned new meanings are the center of “cancel culture” actions to force a one world view on all free citizens. No such movement will ever bring peace and good for all. This present movement (philosophy) is born of the flesh; it is a copy of innumerable demonically inspired attempts throughout human history to exalt man above the plans God has for His creation. To know how to overcome this spirit of rebellion, we need only turn back to God’s Word. For though we walk in the flesh [as mortal men], we are not carrying on our [spiritual] warfare according to the flesh and using the weapons of man. The weapons of our warfare are not physical [weapons of flesh and blood]. Our weapons are divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses. We are destroying sophisticated arguments and every exalted and proud thing that sets itself up against the [true] knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought and purpose captive to the obedience of Christ, being ready to punish every act of disobedience, when your own obedience [as a church] is complete. 2 Corinthians 10:3-6 Amplified Bible
The Word of God calls us to complete obedience: something not possible in our flesh but received by grace through faith in the perfected obedience of Jesus Christ. For forty days during His fasting in the wilderness, Jesus was under attack by Satan. Yet, while at His most vulnerable, Jesus made no attempt to lean on His human strength; but rather, He defeated His enemy by quoting the Word of God. (Read the full account in Luke 4:1-13 NIV for personal inspiration.) The enemy, not even Satan himself, can stand against the eternal Word of God. …for thou hast made thy name to be magnificent and raised up thy spoken word above all things. Psalm 138: 2 Jubilee Bible
What could possibly be worse than the lawlessness, destruction, and violence we are experiencing now? This dear reader: the lasting impact of all the hate-filled words that will linger long after this societal upheaval ceases. Those words of “you versus me” will live on. Relationships damaged or ended over the actions of the word police will not heal easily. Words of scorn, bias, and hatred have consequences long after they are spoken. Words become society’s thoughts, those thoughts become their beliefs, and those beliefs determine what they become and how they act.
For the Word that God speaks is alive and active; it cuts more keenly than any two-edged sword: it strikes through to the place where soul and spirit meet, to the innermost intimacies of a man’s being: it exposes the very thoughts and motives of a man’s heart. No creature has any cover from the sight of God; everything lies naked and exposed before the eyes of him with whom we have to do. Hebrews 4:12-13 J.B. Phillips New Testament
We - the Church… true Christian believers… know the Word of God is the source of our life. It is time to militantly, boldly speak - prophesy - words of life and love that will beget healing and peace, and build bridges of relationship. When the chance arises to criticize or judge or write a snarky comment on social media to those with opposing views, let us first seek God’s wisdom concerning the issue and speak His words to our adversaries. Command the spirits of darkness to take their hands off those held in the grip of rebellion. Pray for the scales to be removed from their eyes. Claim those lost in sin for the kingdom of God… that they will become children of the light. Speak to the culture of death saying: “No more killing in Jesus name! Have life and that abundantly!” Let us call forth forgiveness from the heart of the Father and speak it over our enemies. Let us be willing to forgive in equal measure as Christ has forgiven us. Resist provocation. Respond with words that beget God's peace and decrees His sovereign will in the earth. Let it be!
Several years ago, I began to grasp this concept. I determined to transform my tendency to criticize others by creating and utilizing Biblically based affirmations: short phrases I mediated on and repeated three times a day to overcome. My goal was to not criticize anyone at anytime. Exerting will power was not a part of this practice. Rather, I gave myself to a 3 times a day for 30 days “washing of the water of the WORD”. (Ephesians 5:26) Although initially difficult to correct my mouth’s critical outbursts, I found at the end of 30 days I was mindfully considering my words in light of God’s wisdom. A word fitly spoken and in due season is like apples of gold in settings of silver. Proverbs 25:11 Amplified Bible, Classic Edition By spending more time meditating on God’s words of wisdom, I found myself desiring to speak words that were uplifting, that brought about reconciliation and peace, that expressed understanding and empathy. Soon I found it easy not to criticize before sizing up a situation against the counsel of God’s Word. To my amazement, this spiritual transformational journey ushered me into the most prosperous time of my life: personally and financially. It was like receiving a prize from my Father for following in His lead: speaking life and not destruction. “I do not criticize anyone, anytime. I will sow words that uplift and bring peace to the person or persons with whom I speak to the glory of God”. Sure Enough.
Our finest hour can emerge out of these chaotic times if we dare to change the narrative. I encourage you to speak words of life to those in distress all around you. Speak victory over victim hood. Share the Life Giver's love and compassion (redemption). Just as words created the earth and the fullness thereof, let us use the power of our words - yielded to God’s purposes - and shape a future worthy of our calling as kingdom builders of the Most High God. Decree that God’s kingdom come and His will be done on earth as it is in heaven! Speak “peace” to every storm in your path. Begin today; and you will be called a peacemaker, a child of the most high God. Sure Enough!
I want to leave you with the following excerpt from a John Lennon and Paul McCartney song that rings particularly true today. It’s time to summon the wisdom from God’s Word, make it the words of our mouths, and release it to the four winds: Let it be… and it will be so! Sure Enough!
And when the broken-hearted people Living in the world agree There will be an answer Let it be
For though they may be parted there is Still a chance that they will see There will be an answer Let it be.
Let it be, let it be, let it be, let it be Whisper words of wisdom Let it be!
Thoughts from the book, The Articles of Transformation by Domenic and Charlie Fusco Please pass the peace on to others you think would benefit. God bless.