We will speak the truth in love. Ephesians 4:14-16
“God wants us to grow up, to know the whole truth and tell it in love – like Christ in everything. We take our lead from Christ, who is the source of everything we do. He keeps us in step with each other. His very breath and blood flow through us, nourishing us so that we will grow up healthy in God, robust in love.” – Ephesians 4:14-16 The Message
“each part working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love.” 16 ESV
We become healthier, stronger and able to do more together.
“Don’t use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them.” – Ephesians 4:29 NLT
“Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.” – Ephesians 4:29 ESV
corrupting – harmful, causing decay or pain or degradation or weakness
good for building up – to strengthen and increase ability as needed or appropriate
Is what I am saying strengthening the person I am speaking with?
In what ways can we use our words to strengthen each other in love?
encourage – give support, confidence, or hope to, to help, to stimulate growth
“Encourage each other and build each other up, just as you are already doing.” – 1 Thessalonians 5:11
“Encourage each other with these words…” – 1 Thessalonians 4:18
“Such things were written in the Scriptures long ago to teach us. And the Scriptures give us hope and encouragement as we wait patiently for God’s promises to be fulfilled.” – Romans 15:4
“Worry weighs a person down; an encouraging word cheers a person up.” – Proverbs 12:25
“The words of the godly are a life-giving fountain; the words of the wicked conceal violence.” – Proverbs 10:11
exhort – earnest appeal or request, to call to, comfort,
“Exhort one another every day, as long as it is called today, so that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.” – Hebrews 3:13
“encourage one another” H 3:13 NIV
“warn each other” H 3:13 NLT
“keep each other on your toes so sin doesn’t slow down your reflexes,” H 3:13 Msg
Speak words that help each other be more alert to God than anything else.
“Let the message about Christ, in all its richness, fill your lives. Teach and counsel each other with all the wisdom he gives. Sings psalms and hymns and spiritual songs to God with thankful hearts. And whatever you do or say, do it as a representative of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through him to God the Father.” – Colossians 3:16-17
“teaching and admonishing”
“As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend.” – Proverbs 27:17
4. Be gracious.
Choose words carefully so that you may bring help as you speak graciously.
“Gracious words are a honeycomb sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.” – Proverbs 16:24
5. Bring comfort.
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we are ourselves are comforted by God.” – 2 Corinthians 1:3-4
6. Speak blessings.
“When right-living people bless the city, it flourishes; evil talk turns it into a ghost town in no time.” – Proverbs 11:11 Msg
7. Speak words that encourage a relationship with Jesus.
“Build up.” Romans 15:2
“We who are strong must be considerate of those who are sensitive about things like this. We must not just please ourselves. We should help others do what is right and build them up in the Lord.” – Romans 15:1-2
8. Speak words to encourage growth in love and good actions.
“Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep his promise. Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works. And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near.” – Hebrews 10:23-25
Spiritual gifts of pastoral counsel, teaching, and prophecy certainly add to this.
1 Corinthians 14:1-40 verbal spiritual gifts to build up the church, with love as motive and Jesus at the center.
“Judas and Silas, who were themselves prophets, encouraged and strengthened the brothers with many words.” – Acts 15:32
9. Speak words that pursue peace.
“Let aim for harmony in the church and try to build each other up.” – Romans 14:19
“Pursue peace and mutual building up,” – Romans 14:19
What should we do?
1. Consider today’s Scriptures.
2. Pray for the people in your life, this week.
3. Ask God what you should say to one person.
4. Find a loving way to encourage them.