Daily Devotional: Day 82
“But let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ ‘No.’ For whatever is more than these is from the evil one” (Matthew 5:37, NKJV).
When you speak, you reveal who you are and where you stand. So, you can tell who a person is by examining his manner of speaking. Integrity in our speaking is essential to our overall integrity as disciples of Jesus Christ. And today, the Lord is teaching us, as part of His Sermon on the Mount, to be disciplined in what we say. Often, there’s a temptation to exaggerate or simply say more than is required in a given situation.
But Jesus is teaching us that we should mean what we say, and say what we mean. Two important words or concepts in most languages are “Yes” and “No.” These two words sound simple, yet many people have a hard time sticking to a “Yes” or a “No.” Moreover, for others, “Yes” can mean “No” and vice versa. When we mix up our “Yes” and “No,” we undermine our own credibility and confuse the people around us. Not only that, this attitude can even impede God’s work in our lives.
When Paul wrote his Second Letter to the Corinthians, he made an important statement: “But as God is faithful, our word to you was not Yes and No. For the Son of God, Jesus Christ, who was preached among you by us . . . was not Yes and No, but in Him was Yes” (2 Corinthians 1:18-19). This means the Gospel Jesus entrusted to us is not a “Yes” and “No” Gospel, but in Christ, all the promises of the Father are “Yes.” In the same way, in our personal life, Jesus is teaching us to be firm in what we stand for; when we say “Yes” to something or someone, it should mean exactly that – nothing more, nothing less.
We should not, however, say “Yes” to everything. Sometimes, the best and only response for us as Christians is a firm “No.” Anything more than a simple “Yes” or “No,” according to Jesus, is from evil. Let’s discipline our heart and tongue to be firm and consistent, for consistency positions us to benefit from the workings of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
Dear Father, you have created me in your image and likeness. Let your Word today take root in my heart. Grant me consistency in my speech that my “Yes” will be “Yes” and my “No” will be “No.” Make me as you are. In the Name of Jesus. Amen.
For further study: Ecclesiastes 5:1-6