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OUTWARD APPEARANCES CAN DECEIVE YOU

May 4, 2017

Thursday

 

Matthew 12:33-37

 

Either make the tree good, and his fruit good; or else make the tree corrupt, and his fruit corrupt: for the tree is known by his fruit. O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh. A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things. But I say unto you, that every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the Day of Judgment .For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.

 

 

LESSON

 

Jesus proceeded to point out that conduct typically reflects character. To have “good fruit” one must “make the tree good,” for example by cultivating, grafting, fertilizing, etc. If one makes a tree rotten by neglect and abuse, for example, one will get “bad fruit.” A good tree produces good fruit, and a bad tree yields bad fruit. Jesus’ works were good, so He must be good.

 

Jesus’ point was that a person’s character determines what he or she says and does. The mouth usually reveals what is in the heart. All good people say and do some things that are good and some things that are bad. Likewise, all bad people say and do some things that are good and some things that are bad. We are not exactly like the trees in this illustration. Jesus did not mean that if a person was able to say all the right words, he or she could deceive God and win salvation by clever speech. The basis of justification and condemnation is character, but “words”

reveal character, so they become the instruments by which God judges.

 

Transforming our speech begins by transforming our hearts. Our speech problems are really a heart problem.

 

Memory Verse: Proverbs 17:22

 

Mirrors should think longer before they reflect.

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