Did You Know?

Two men and zero women have been

executed in the United States in 2019.

5 Killed in Aurora, Illinois
Five individuals were shot and killed at a manufacturing plant in Aurora, Illinois. Five police officers were injured and the gunman was eventually killed by the police. On the day of the shooting, the shooter was being fired from his position at the plant, where he had worked for the last 15 years. Please pray for the families of the deceased. Please pray for healing for the injured. Please pray for peace.
4 Killed in Kashmir
Four Indian soldiers have been killed in India-administered Kashmir, following a clash with militants. Recently, in the same region, over 40 others were killed in a suicide attack. Pakistani and Indian forces have been battling over the area. Please pray for the families of the deceased. Please pray for peace.
Flooded Gold Mine in Zimbabwe
Nine miners have been rescued alive from a flooded, illegal gold mine in Zimbabwe, while the bodies of 24 others have been recovered. Flooding occurring after a dam burst. While nine have been rescued, dozens of others remain missing and are feared dead. Please pray for the families of the deceased. Please pray for the missing miners and for their families.
9 Killed in Chittagong, Bangladesh
At least nine individuals have been killed, and over 50 others injured, after a fire in a slum in Chittagong, Bangladesh. The cause of the fires is suspected to be a short circuit. Please pray for the families of the deceased. Please pray for healing for the injured. Please pray for all those affected.
Force Withdraw Agreement in Yemen
Government and rebel forces have reached an agreement to withdraw forces around the port of Hudaydah. The withdraw is part of a ceasefire agreement reached last year. The conflict began in 2015, and has resulted in thousands of civilian deaths and injuries. Please pray for peace in the region. Please pray for the families of the deceased and for healing for the injured.
7 Killed in Haiti
At least seven individuals have been killed as a result of protests against the government in Haiti. Protesters are protesting the soaring inflation and accuse the government of corruption and misappropriation of funds. The protesters have also asked for the resignation of President Jovenel Moise. The President has rejected the idea. Please pray for the families of the deceased. Pleas pray for peace.
17 Killed in New Delhi, India
At least 17 individuals have been killed after a fire in a hotel in New Delhi, India. Thirty-five others were rescued from the fire and 19 were taken to the hospital for injured. The cause of the fire is under investigation. Please pray for the families of the deceased. Please pray for healing for the injured.
Heat Wave in Australia
A record heat wave, following a record drought, in Australia have farmers, and others, worried. The drought and heat have caused animals to die and worries that crops will not be able to be planted. Across the globe, the United States is experiencing record cold temperatures. Please pray for all those affected by extreme temperatures. Please pray for their safety and health.

After God created Adam and Eve, He gave them simple instructions to follow - Do not eat (Genesis 2:16-17).  They failed to follow these instructions were tossed out from the Garden of Eden into the harsh world.  But God did not abandon them.  While not specified, the Bible indicates that He provided further instructions to Adam and Eve about how they were to live their lives in a pleasing manner to Him (Genesis 4:1-7).  

 

When the Israelites left Egypt, God realized the need for further instruction; clear cut rules for the Israelites to follow.  Thus, God delivered to Moses, by word, instructions on nearly every facet of life.  Ten of these instructions, from which all other instructions stem, are called the 10 Commandments.  Two of those commandments were instructions on how we are to use our words.  God knew that power that words hold.  He used that power to create the world we now live in!  Because of that power, God wants us to be aware and accountable of what we say.

 

“You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes his name in vain…You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.”  (Exodus 20:7,16  ESV)

 

The first commandment to instruct on how we are to use words, focuses on how we are to use the Lord’s name.  “You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes his name in vain.”  (Exodus 20:7)  Upon hearing this commandment, most people think that we are not to use the Lord’s name as a curse.  After all, how would you feel if people starting using your name as a swear word?  God’s name is Holy!  Just like your name, it is His identity, which is greater than we can comprehend!  Sadly, it is nearly impossible to turn on a television show or movie and not hear His name, or His Son’s name, taken in vain.  

But the commandment is not quite so simple.  By becoming a Christian, a follower of the Lord God, our entire lifestyle is to change - including how we use words!  Yes, we are not to use the Lord’s name in a blasphemous way, including swearing, but the commandment does not say, “don’t swear,” it says, do “not take the name of the Lord your God in vain.”   If we proclaim to be followers of the Lord, but our lifestyle, and our words do not reflect our proclamation, then have we not defiled the name of the Lord?  False prophets were condemned for falsely using the name of the Lord to legitimize their words.  We too are expected to uphold the name of the Lord in both actions and words.  God’s name should only be used in worship of Him!

 

But this was not the Lord’s only instruction on how to use our words; “You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.”  (Leviticus 20:16, ESV)  This commandment is often simplified as “do not lie.”  As before, this simplification is correct; we are not to tell lies, about anyone, for any reason, in any way.  But also, as before, people often try to skirt the meaning and intent behind the commandment.  People may say “gosh darn it,” “golly gee,” or “gee whiz” as an attempt to avoid swearing using the Lord’s name, however the meaning and intent behind the words is the same.  In the same way, lies can be told through a lack of words or the concealment of certain information.  Lying is not only achieved by stating a false fact.

 

Further, this commandment tells us that, again, our entire life is to be changed by entering into a relationship with the Lord.  Jesus was asked by a man in Luke 10:29 who exactly his neighbor was.  Jesus responded over the next eight verses by telling the story commonly known as the Good Samaritan.  The concluding point of the story is that everyone is our neighbor, even our most fiercest enemy.  We should not lie to, use our words to trick or deceive, spread gossip, or tell falsehoods about our neighbors - anyone!  The effect of these words have consequences.  False words can alter perceptions, change opinions, and harm those about whom we are speaking.  

 

Through these commandments, God prodded instruction on how our words are to be used.  God’s instructions are realign and applicable to all.  God’s power and wisdom is demonstrated through His instructions, which grow with us.  His instruction can be simplified for the youngest listener, but as we grow in in wisdom and knowledge, our understanding of the full meaning of His instructions also grows.

 

Words have power!  Words have the power to create!  Words have the power to deceive and manipulate!  Words have power in silence!  Words should be used carefully!  Words reflect our heart!  Words have the power to instruct!

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Only through a relationship with Jesus Christ can anyone hope to separate themselves from the power of sin in this world. Through Him, all things are made new. For a complete listing of readings, please download our Bible Study.

 

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