Good morning my lovely friends! I am so excited after reading day 2 and day 3, that I woke up early and cannot wait to start on them!
Day 2: “The Flattering Tongue”
“These people…flatter others to get favors in return.” ~Jude 1:16 (NLT)
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Flatter: verb
1) To please by complimentary remarks or comments.
2) To praise or comment, INSINCERELY, effusively, or excessively.
3) To represent favorably; gratify by falsification. (That portrait flatters her.)
4) To show to an advantage. (That haircut flatters her face.)
5) To play up the vanities or susceptibilities of; cajole, wheedle or beguile. (They flattered him into contributing a large amount of money for the foundation.
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Jude 1:16 (KJV) “These are murmurers, complainers, walking after their own lusts; and their mouth speaketh great swelling words having men’s persons in admiration because of advantage.”
Proverbs 28:23 (KJV) “He that rebuketh a man afterwards shall find more favor than he that flattereth with the tongue.
James 2:18 (KJV): For when they speak great swelling words of vanity, they allure through the lusts of the flesh, through much wantonness, those that were clean escaped from them who live in error.”
I had a hard time with this study.
I write in my books-(colorful pens, today it is RED) in the margins, underlining, starring, exclamation points, circling passages..my study guide looks like it is bleeding from all the red ink in it!
I have written, edited, and rewritten this day’s study over and over. I am still not sure if it is exactly what I want it to convey, but if not, expect some further editing in the near future!
I think the problem stems from my own perception of what is flattery, and what is giving a compliment. My opinion was that there was very little difference between the two. That is, before I really began to investigate what the true meaning of the words were, and what they imply.
Admittedly, when I changed churches, and knew no one there at all, I felt isolated, and wanted to integrate myself into the congregation. I found that approaching the Worship Director with a sincere observation, “I really enjoyed the choice of songs during worship and praise,” helped me get to know him, his wife and family sooner than if I waited until the next fellowship event at the church. But, the key here is that my words were/are not “A lie covered in a bed of flowery words.” They were/are a sincere description of how I felt/feel. But, I can also honestly say that my intent was to gain an intangible favor; and that was acceptance. The words I spoke had nothing to do with any feelings of “low self-worth,” I was just trying to make friends to fellowship with. As with the Sisters in church, I tried to find some common ground, whether it be our Bible covers, our clothing, our family life, whatever, to gain some meaningful friendships that allow me to fellowship beyond the perimeters of the church.
The author talks about how engaging in flattery is clear evidence of a lack of faith in the LORD’S ability to give favor to his children. Many times, it is clearly a Satanic attack. One remark said to us on a day we might be feeling emotionally fragile, can set off a whirlwind of self defeating thoughts, even if the remark was an innocent observation. This is clearly where the gift, and the use of discernment is valuable to us. We must be able to use our knowledge that the simple act of uttering the name “JESUS” will rebuke the intentions of Satan to destroy our faith in our LORD and SAVIOR. We must use our knowledge that only good things come from GOD, and not let our faith weaken even when we are ruled by our emotions-emotions of unworthiness, feeling unappreciated, unattractive, even unloved. We are vulnerable to flattery when Satan strikes at our insecurities and our hearts with all the negative emotions he has to offer.
Philippians 1:6 (KJV) ” Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Je’sus Christ.”
Psalm 5:11,12 “But let all those that that put their trust in thee rejoice: let them ever shout for joy, because thou defendest them: let them also that love thy name be joyful in thee. For thou, LORD, wilt bless the righteous; with favor wilt thou compass him as with a shield.”
The Bible is full of examples of the LORD giving favor to his FAITHFUL children, with absolutely NO ACTION on their part. The example of the LORD giving Joseph favor in Egypt, even after he was sold into slavery by his jealous brothers, Joseph was not forgotten. The LORD rewarded his faithful servant with stewardship over Egypt’s entire food resources. What an honor. This man went from being a slave, to being held in high esteem by the King of Egypt.
So, what does this message tell me? It clearly shows me that no matter what the circumstance, the LORD has not forgotten me. He is till my stronghold and fortress in any and all storms. That in my times of insecurity, when my eyes are downcast, Satan will rush in and pile all the negative emotions he can on me.
Knowing this, it is to my benefit to continually and without ceasing raise my eyes and ears to the heavens. I must use the discernment He has given me to sort the good intentions from the bad, to use words to glorify our LORD and not to deceive others, holding close the knowledge that Jesus always has my back, as long as I keep my eyes, ears and heart centered on Him.
Psalm 12:3: The LORD shall cut off all flattering lips and the tongue that speaketh proud things.
As the author states “Is flattery worth being cut off from the blessings of God?
Today’s Affirmation: Job 32:21-22 (KJV)
“Let me not, I pray you, accept any man’s person, neither let me give flattering titles unto man. For I know not to give flattering titles; in so doing my maker would soon take me away.”
As I stated earlier; this day’s study was a real challenge. But like everything that has value, I had to work hard to get a complete understanding of the scripture.
To me, it is definitely NOT WORTH IT to be cut off from GOD for flattering someone. Nope, No WAY!!
Father, I am so blessed that you allowed me to open my mind and heart to gain knowledge of your word. I am also blessed that I am allowed to share my thought’s with others, and it is my prayer that someone, somewhere would draw closer to YOU by reading my thought’s and your quoted words. In Jesus name..Amen