“If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.” (1 Peter 4:11)
What does it mean to speak “as the oracles of God”? Some Bible translations use the word “utterances.” Basically this verse is talking about what ought to be true of our speech whenever something comes out of our mouths. You may not be a preacher standing in a pulpit. You may not be a teacher standing at a chalkboard. But did you know that every believer has, in a sense, a duty to be a “mouthpiece” of God?
These days, God does not give us new revelation outside of the Bible. He has already spoken to us through His written Word, and through His Son, the Living Word. So, if we are true believers, our words ought to be affected by His already-given Word. Our words should reflect the impact that God’s Word has had on our lives. Our words should be in keeping with what God would want us to say. And our words should not go against His Word.
When you talk to a cashier or a bagger at the grocery store, did you know that what you say ought to reflect God’s Word? When you speak to your family members, your speech ought to be honoring to God. Whenever you use the brain that God gave you to think of things to say, and whenever you use the mouth that God gave you to say those things, remember that your speech should line up with the will of God. God makes speaking possible, and He gives you opportunities to speak. Your words should line up with God’s Word. Your words should not contradict (go against) His Word.
Think about the last time you spoke with anyone. Were you a “mouthpiece” for God’s words to come through you and encourage or help that person? Or did you use your mouth to talk however you wanted to about whatever you wanted to? The best way to use your tongue is as a tool to do God’s will. When someone hears you speak, do they hear “a word in season”? Do they hear speech that is “full of grace and truth”? When people think about having a conversation with you, do they think, “Oh, no–do I really have to listen to Kim complain all about her classes again?” Or do they think things like “I can’t wait to see Jared again and hear how things went this summer at that Christian camp he always goes to.”
An old preacher used to say, “A Christian is the only ‘Bible’ some people will ever read.” What kind of things are others “reading” about your God and His people when you open up your mouth? When you have a chance to speak to someone, honor God with your speech: Talk to that person as God Himself would have you talk to that person.
God has given us our tongues to be used as tools for His glory.
» How might others describe my usual talking habits?
» Am I using my brain and my tongue to honor God with my speech?
» How can I change the way I talk so that I am less of a “mouthpiece” for myself and more like a “mouthpiece” for God?