District Fellowship News
July, August 2010
definition for oil is as follows: An
oil is any substance that is liquid at ambient temperatures and is
hydrophobic but soluble in organic solvents. Oils have a high carbon
and hydrogen content and are non-polar substances. All oils can be
traced back to organic sources.
Generally then all oils have some common characteristics, they all came from organisms, they generally are liquid and slippery, and they are composed of hydrogen and carbon, but there are differences. Crude oil, like that in the gulf carries with it many absorbable compounds that can make it dangerous to be immersed in or to consume or inhale. So just because they are both oils doesn’t mean they are the same. Things of the same name are very different. One is toxic, one is not, and it can be hard to tell the difference.
same thing can be said about our words. Words can be used to soothe
broken hearts, mend destroyed relationships, encourage downtrodden
souls. The positive effect words can have cannot be overestimated. Just
as oil massaged into the skin can refresh and rejuvenate, words spoken
from the heart can bring joy and wonder. But words can also ruin lives,
rip families apart, lead people away from truth. The negative effects
of words can bring about system wide failures. The same object can have
both positive and negative effects.
his letter to the Corinthians, Paul spends a lot of time warning the
Corinthians against those who come to teach a different Jesus. He
wrote, “You happily put up with whatever anyone tells you,
even if they preach a different Jesus than the one we preach, or a
different kind of Spirit than the one you received, or a different kind
of gospel than the one you believed.” (1 Cor. 11:4). There
were those who spoke in nice words but didn’t speak truth and
those words negatively affected the Corinthians spiritually.
“Such people are not serving Christ our Lord; they are
serving their own personal interests. By smooth talk and glowing words
they deceive innocent people.” (Rom 16:18) The words seemed
fine, but they were bringing death. Just as the oil flowing from the
bottom of the ocean is bringing a blight to the areas that it is
touching, so words spewing from our hearts unchecked can bring a blight
into the spiritual, emotional, and relational lives of those who are
touched by them.
realize words can give life or bring death. Check what you say through
the filter of the Spirit. Let God refine your thoughts. Proverbs says,
“The heart of the godly thinks carefully before speaking; the
mouth of the wicked overflows with evil words.” When we allow
God to clean up our heart, our words become sweeter. Second, let God
help you discern the toxicity of the words spoken around you.
Don’t listen to those who speak a “different
truth” or those who spew lies and gossip. Those words will
only contaminate you. And last, if you have been contaminated by toxic
speech, go to the One who is the expert in decontamination. With
God’s help, the effects of evil words can be minimized and
purity can be restored. Toxic oil can hurt the physical world, but
toxic words can impact body, soul, and spirit.