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Speaking/Talking

‘Do not speak evil of one another’ (James 4:11). Belittling criticism of others is another case of pride coming out in what we say. It is a lack of faith united with evil works, an offense both to the person criticized and to God. God's will is to love others (James 2:8) with humility and mercy, even if they are in the wrong…” (Orthodox Study Bible, James 4:11-12)


“Every wicked act dulls the sense of our thoughts and gives birth to arrogance. For although it is necessary for each one to examine himself and behave according to God’s will, many people do not do this but prefer to mind the business of others…they forget their own weaknesses and set about criticizing them and slandering them. They condemn them, not knowing that they suffer from the same things as the people they have criticized, and in so doing they condemn themselves. The wise Paul writes exactly the same thing [in Rm 2:1]: “If you judge another in something, you condemn yourself, for the one who judges does the same things.” (St. Cyril of Alexandria)

“Not only is it impossible for sweet and bitter water to come out of one and the same fountain, but it is also true that if the two get mixed, it is the bitter which will affect the sweet, not the other way round. Put blessing and cursing together, and cursing will win out every time. Bad habits corrupt good manners, and wicked talk has the same effect.” (St. Bede)


“Keep yourself from much talk, for it is this that extinguishes the noetic movements produced in our heart by God…Language is the gift of God, uniquely human. Within it is borne a power to reveal, indeed a power that is deeply related to the act of creation itself. In Genesis, God creates with speech. It is the means by which we pray, the primary means of communion with others. Words are physical objects, passing from our mouths to the ears of others. We touch each other with words. Speech has been made worthy to serve as a sacrifice before God.” (St. Isaac the Syrian, Father Stephen Freeman)


“…if we peruse the record of the evangelist [Luke], we discover that few who experience His love have much to say. The liberated demoniac remains silent…Simon Peter’s mother-in-law simply arises and serves Him…Peter merely blurts out, “Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord”…Matthew follows Him without a word…Even the widow who receives her son from the dead does not speak!... The love of God often renders us speechless, even as He empowers us.” (Dynamis 10/12/2020)


“Nothing is more unsettling than talkativeness and more pernicious than an unbridled tongue…If we remembered that it is written, “By your words you will be justified and by your words you will be condemned,” we would choose to remain silent.” (Saint Philotheos of Sinai, St. Poemen the Great)


“A Christian must be courteous to all. His words and deeds should breath with the grace of the Holy Spirit, which abides in his soul, so that in this way he might glorify the name of God. He who regulates all of his speech also regulates all of his actions. He who keeps watch over the words he is about to say also keeps watch over the deeds he intends to do, and he never goes out of the bounds of good and benevolent conduct…And let us not make the mistake of thinking that constantly speaking of spiritual or theological matters always justifies this passion of talkativeness. For incessantly speaking of such matters while not acting upon them is of little benefit to us." (St. Nectarios of Aegina, Archimandrite Vassilios Papavassiliou)


“He who refrains from uttering a harsh word is intelligent, because this restraint shows he possesses the general virtues of Wisdom and thus has his tongue under control. He also has long-suffering, a fruit of discernment, one of the general virtues.” (Orthodox Study Bible, Proverbs 17:29)


“Often it is not so much what we say but the way we say it that prompts such varied responses as acceptance and anger…Words can have either life-giving or death-producing results.” (Foundation Study Bible, Proverbs 15:1)


“There is judgment in life, for sooner or later what we say and do comes home to roost. And there is judgment in death. As the Lord Jesus puts it, “But I say to you that for every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment” (Mt 12:36). When we meet that final wall and this life ends, we shall answer to God.” (Dynamis 7/29/2019)


“Our first task in the process of salvation is “speaking the truth in love” (Eph 4:15). There are many ways to speak the truth: bluntly, with detachment, cruelly, haughtily, with love arising from our personal experience and thanksgiving. We may take any one of these approaches, all the while using nice manners and socially approved words. However, none of these models is the one that the Apostle Paul commends to us. Only the Lord Jesus Christ speaks the truth perfectly, with full personal involvement and true concern for others’ illumination and well-being…Saint Paul calls us to embrace the manner of loving and truthful speech exemplified by the Lord Jesus. The more Christ dwells in our hearts, the more we will find ourselves able to speak to others with the Lord’s lifegiving love – and the more He will speak through us.”(Dynamis 9/20/2018)

“He [Christ] is the reason these words are vital and powerful. Using words without the Word is vain.” (Orthodox Study Bible, 1 Timothy 4:5-6)

“When we are willing to open our mouths to speak for Him, we can be sure that He will give us the right thing to say. It is not that we put our minds in neutral but that we submit our minds to Him to use as He sees fit and to empower as He has promised.” (John MacArthur)

“Christ commands us to be not only honest and well- meaning, but simple and straight-talking, not allowing our tongues to utter empty words or promises that may be broken by unforeseen events or due to our limited knowledge...(Matthew 5:34-37)” (Archimandrite Vassilios Papavassiliou)

“…our call to speak the truth in love to one another is gospel-oriented.” (Tony Reinke)


#Dynamis #OrthodoxStudyBible #JohnMacArthur #ArchimandriteVassiliosPapavassiliou #TonyReinke #SaintPhilotheosofSinai #StPoementheGreat #StNectariosofAegina #FoundationStudyBible #StCyrilofAlexandria #StBede #StIsaactheSyrian #FatherStephenFreeman


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