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Killer Words
Scripture: Psalm 64:3; Proverbs 18:21; Genesis 1:3;...
Track 4 of 12 in the Soul Detox series
Running time: 53 minutes, 14 seconds.
Like a neutron bomb which annihilates human life but leaves building intact, words can devastate. Your body remains unharmed but your HEART suffers the deadly shrapnel of painful words or phrases. David knew a think or two of having enemies in high places. He wrote the following from his experiences: They sharpen their tongues like swords and aim their words like deadly arrows.

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Mike Nobis Speaker: Mike Nobis
Sunday School Teacher, Former Elder at Madison Park Christian Church. Mike is President of JK Creative Printers & Mailing in Quincy, IL. He is married to Pam and has three children, Tom, Tyler and Jennifer. Mike has three grandchildren: Ryne, Ivy and Alicia.

View all sermons by this speaker.

Toxic Behaviors
Killer Words…Experiencing the Power of Life-Giving Words

Am I a little too dramatic when I titled my lesson for today, killer words? Is there any such thing? I am aware of killer bees, killer zombies, killer grasshoppers and the like; but is there such a thing as “killer words”?

Have you ever said something to another with the intent to kill? Maybe not physically but you did have the intent to kill emotionally, mentally or even spiritually? What causes us to go to that level? What has to happen to get you to a place to kill with your words?

Can you kill someone with your words without having the intent to do damage? How?

Mother Teresa said it this way: “Words which do not give the light of Christ increase the darkness.”

True or False: Sticks and stones my break my bones but WORDS can never hurt me!

The adult version of this child statement might go something like this:

Sticks and stones can bruise the body for a few days, but words can scar your soul for life.

Like a neutron bomb which annihilates human life but leaves building intact, words can devastate. Your body remains unharmed but your HEART suffers the deadly shrapnel of painful words or phrases. David knew a think or two of having enemies in high places. He wrote the following from his experiences:

Psalm 64:3 (NIV) They sharpen their tongues like swords and aim their words like deadly arrows.

What are some of the words or phrases that are intended to kill?
You’ll never amount to anything.
I wish I never had you.
You’re nothing like your brother
I’m so sick of you.
I never loved you.
You’ll never change.

As devastating as these words can be, they can be offset by words of truth, hope and love. The right words said at just the right moment can be helpful, healing and life-transforming.

Proverbs 18:21 (NIV) The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.

What you say can give life to you and other people, or it can take life away. Words are so powerful and their effect goes way beyond our imagination. Think about this a minute; how did God use words and for what purpose did He use them?

Genesis 1:3 (NIV) And God said…
In the Bible, when God says something, what takes place? Look in Genesis 1, how many times does it show up and what were the effects?

I don’t know if you picked this up or not but when it comes to words, closely related to words is the reference to the heart. Why do words have such an impact on a person? Is it because of the power of words or the power that lies within the heart of man to be a receiver of words? The heart was created to be the repository of all the words spoken to an individual. It is the heart that motivates behavior and God uses a spiritual WiFi system (language) to stimulate the heart and affect man in a way that produces behavior pleasing to God. The heart is highly sensitive by the words spoken to it, both from sources of good and bad.

Proverbs 16:23-24 (NIV) A wise man's heart guides his mouth, and his lips promote instruction. Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.

Think about this a minute, do you know how many words on average a person might speak in one day? Based on a number of studies, it is believed that on average, a woman will speak between 16,000 – 20,000 words a day. Men will speak somewhere in the range of 7,000 words.

True or False: The reason a women speaks so many words in a day is due to the times she has to repeat herself when speaking to a man.

Wow, that is a lot of words but when we match those facts to the following principle from God, how does that affect us?

Ephesians 4:29 (NIV) 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.

Here is the hard cold fact, countless times a day you and I have to make some hard choices. When you hear the words of others, you can choose to receive them as truth or reject them as lies. And every time you open your mouth to utter a word, you have the OPPORTUNITY to speak life or the temptation to take it. Over the past few days when you spoke to people, what did they hear from you? Did you shoot sharp, poison dipped darts into their hearts or did you inject them with life-giving, God honoring booster shots?

Proverbs 15:4 (NIV) The tongue that brings healing is a tree of life, but a deceitful tongue crushes the spirit.

Do you have examples in your memory of the words of encouragement that were spoken to you at the right time that had a great impact on your life today? Are any of you struggling with life today based on something said to you that was intended to crush your spirit?

How are you at giving encouragement to others either by saying words that comfort or through writing little notes telling someone just how awesome hey are to you?

Whose job is it at your house to take out the trash? Why is that function an important one? Do you ever get into a family feud over it?

Here are some interesting facts about garbage:
1) A generation ago, do you know the number one complaint of adolescents and teenagers? They had to take out the trash. Today, they don’t have a cell phone.
2) The average person gets rid of about 6 pounds of garbage a day.
3) The amount of garbage generated today is about 2 times the amount 30 years ago.
4) A University of Arizona study discovered that about 14-15% of all US edible food is untouched or unopened.

True or False: It is okay to allow someone to dump their toxic waste into our water supply.

If false, then why do so many Christians allow it to be done? I’m not talking about allowing people to contaminate our drinking water; I’m talking about controlling what we believe. We can’t stop people from saying bad things about us but we can control what we believe when we hear it. Since toxic words are deadly for the soul, then we have to protect our hearts against them.

Proverbs 4:20, 23 (NIV) My son, pay attention to what I say; listen closely to my words…Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life.

When we find ourselves buried under a heap of someone else’ trash, what should we do? Take out the trash. And how do we do this?

When someone says something to you or about you that is a little unsettling, train yourself to play a game called, Truth or Trash. First analyze the message and the source before swallowing and digesting what someone wants to feed you. Are their words true? Are they based on scripture? Is there supported proof over time? Is so, then embrace the message. If the message is untrue, mean-spirited and critical without being constructive, then treat the message as it really is…toxic waste and take out the trash and leave it by the curb. Delete toxic words and insert the truth.

Choose Life. All of us are human so there are going to be words inside us that are negative, that is only natural. However, like holding in your gut to make yourself look thinner, hold those negative words in and release the words that are positive. Here is a good rule to live by:

“If you think something good, say it”. Every time you think something positive give it life with your words. This is especially important if you are married. This is called the “awe technique”. What is ever good, any thought that you have that is positive or encouraging, let it rip and display the “awe technique”.

I want to close with this passage from Jesus:

Mark 11:23 (NIV) "I tell you the truth, if anyone says to this mountain, 'Go, throw yourself into the sea,' and does not doubt in his heart but believes that what he says will happen, it will be done for him.

In light of all we talked about today, what does Jesus words mean to us when he says we can move mountains by our words?