Friday: Further Thought ~ Christ-Shaped Lives and Spirit-Inspired Speech

Further Thought:

“Let your conversation be of such a nature that you will have no need of repentance. ‘Grieve not the Holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.’ … If you have love in your heart, you will seek to establish and build up your brother in the most holy faith.

Image © Stan Myers from

If a word is dropped that is detrimental to the character of your friend or brother, do not encourage this evil-speaking. It is the work of the enemy. Kindly remind the speaker that the word of God forbids that kind of conversation.” — Ellen G. White, Advent Review and Sabbath Herald, June 5, 1888.

How would your congregation change if you and each member were to take and live a pledge consisting of such statements as the following?

1. I wish for my influence within the Seventh-day Adventist Church family and beyond to be positive, uplifting, faith-building, and morale-boosting (Ephesians 4:29).

2. Recalling Christ’s calls for unity and love, I will expend more energy affirming those doing and saying things I believe to be good than in pointing out the failings of those I believe to be wrong (John 13:34-35John 17:20-23Ephesians 4:1-61 Thessalonians 5:9-11).

3. When I do disagree with someone, I will make my respect for my fellow believer clear. I will assume his or her integrity and commitment to Christ. I will offer my differing opinion gently, not stridently (Ephesians 4:31-32).

4. I will live joyfully, looking for every opportunity to build up and affirm my fellow church members, as I await the return of Christ (Ephesians 4:29-30Galatians 6:2Hebrews 10:24-25).

Discussion Questions:

Review the 11 times in Ephesians that Paul describes the three members of the Godhead as working closely together for the salvation of humankind. How does this repeated emphasis inform our understanding of the Godhead? Ephesians 1:3-14Ephesians 1:15-23Ephesians 2:11-18Ephesians 2:19-22Ephesians 3:1-13Ephesians 3:14-19Ephesians 4:4-6Ephesians 4:17-24Ephesians 4:25-32Ephesians 5:15-20Ephesians 6:10-20 (where “the Lord,” Ephesians 6:10, refers to Christ).
How does Paul’s counsel about Christian speech (Ephesians 4:25-32) apply in the age of “computer-mediated communication,” which is too often used for cyberbullying and anonymous, online character assassination?



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