Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.
Other Bible translations translate the word “unwholesome” in verse 29 as “rotten, corrupt, or evil.” I am reminded of a passage from John Wesley’s Journal entry from October 6, 1774, where he is advising others on how to vote in the upcoming elections. Wesley says, “I met those of our society who had voted in the ensuing election and advised them
1. To vote, without fee or reward, for the person they judged most worthy
2. To speak no evil of the person they voted against, and
3. To take care their spirits were not sharpened against those that voted on the other side.”
In our current politicized climate, this message is especially important for the Body of Christ. Where have I spoken in an unwholesome way towards others...towards candidates and those who support such candidates I think are unfit for office? How can I speak in such a way that builds up others and benefits those who listen even if they disagree with me?
When you are finished with your time of reflection, close out this time with this prayer.
Oh God, hear the prayers and petitions of your servants. For Your sake, O Lord, look with favor on this dry and thirsty land. Give ear, O God, and hear; open your eyes and see the desolation of the city that bears your Name. We do not make requests of you because we are righteous, but because of Your great mercy. O Lord, listen! Oh Lord, forgive! O Lord, hear and act! For Your sake, O my God, do not delay, because your city and your people bear your name. (Daniel 9:17-19)
Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version ® NIV ®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2014 by Biblica, Inc.®. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.