Be Careful Little Mouth

April 03, 2007

Reverend Gordon Wong has an excellent column in Impact Magazine. It is entitled "Be Careful Little Mouth What You Say: Claiming To Have A Word From God." He argues that Christians need to be careful not to use the Lord's name in vain by invoking God's name to justify our actions or thoughts. Here are a couple of highlights:

So, how do we avoid using the name of the Lord in vain? Not just by never saying it or carelessly swearing by it. More importantly, we must never carelessly speak "in the name of God". If we are not sure that God has spoken to us, we should not present our own thoughts as if we are sure they are God's thoughts!

And even if we feel sure that God has spoken to us, the wise person would never claim so arrogantly, lest he be wrong and thus guilty of using the name of the LORD in vain. The seven priests in Acts 19:13-14 thought they were speaking in the name of Jesus when they tried to cast out some demons, but they were wrong. They used the name of the Lord Jesus in vain!

Pastors, visionaries, interpreters of dreams and all who claim to speak a word from the Lord - let us heed God's warning to be careful and humble in what we say in the name of God.
Amen! This is an important word that many Christians need to consider. Too often it seems that God is used by someone to justify what that individual wanted to do. This reminds me of a great piece by comedian Stephen Colbert a few months ago in Wired magazine. With humor he made the same point about why we should be careful about using God's name in vain. He wrote in a piece entitled "Be an Expert on Anything":
PICK A FIELD THAT CAN'T BE VERIFIED. Try something like string theory or God's will: "I speak to God. I'm sorry that you can't also."
With that lack of verification comes the abuse that Wong warns us about. Hopefully Christians will become more responsible.