TV Transcripts

“Speak Life” Part One
Broadcast #1640
March 10, 2024

Transcript of message from TV Broadcast 1640 -- taken from Closed Captioning Text

— Brother Phil Enlow: Well, I’ve had some thoughts going around in my mind the last…oh, two or three days especially. And, some of it is going to be things we’ve…many of it’s gonna be things we’ve heard before, but I saw a connection that I don’t know that I had really emphasized before. And so, I’m want to go ahead and start with the verse, perhaps this is the center of it, in Proverbs chapter 18, verse 21. And, it’s not, as I say, a new thought, but I felt like the Lord, you know, opened my eyes to something that I hope will help us this morning, because I need help, don’t you?

( congregational amens ).

I need it as much as you do. I just happen to be the one the Lord has put up in this particular place. That doesn’t mean I don’t have needs, but the Lord is faithful. But anyway, these are the words of Solomon in the Proverbs.

And he says this, “The tongue has the power of life and death…” (NIV). Certainly, that’s not a new thought, is it? “The tongue has the power of life and death.” I don’t know if we realize the power of our tongue, and how central it is to virtually everything in our lives on this earth and God’s purposes for us. How many of you know we were created in the image of God? When God does something, how does He do it? I mean, when creation happened, how did He do that?

( congregational response ).

He spoke. There was power in the Word that He spoke, wasn’t there…enough to accomplish something? And I wonder if we realize just how powerfully creative human speech is, and the implications of that in so many different ways? But, it not only has the power of life, it has the power of death. I think we realize that by looking at the world.

You know, I was thinking…as I was thinking of this, my mind went back to the simple fact, I believe on a natural level, there are a lot of people in this world that actually understand this in a measure, but on a totally natural level, disconnected from God, that people have power to say things and make them come to pass.

You know, a little over a century ago, the human race went through a period of great optimism. You know, where a new century in 1900 is turning over and we’re seeing scientific advances and we’re just gonna go forward into a glorious future for mankind. And, what a…what a crazy introduction to one of the worst centuries that the world has ever seen, in terms of violence. But up until you got into some of that, there was this optimism. And there was an idea that began to be very popular. How many of you have ever read the book, or seen one of the movie adaptations of “The Secret Garden.”

( congregation inaudible ).

Yeah. It’s a very sweet story on one level. But if you actually read the original, do you know what the real theme of that is? That human speech is powerful, almost magical, that if we will simply engage that natural power that we all have, we could change our own future. We can change our…you know, our fortunes.

We can undo bad things and make good things come to pass. We have creative power through the mind, and so the characters were actually engaged in, not only in confessing positive things, but chanting them, as though, if we just chant the right things, then magical things will happen. That was actually the theme of the book.

It’s been soft-pedalled in many of the movie adaptations, thankfully, so you can kind of enjoy it on that level. But that’s not a new idea, and out of that you see that reflected in a lot of the motivational speakers…will talk about, think and grow rich. Or confess what you’re…confess the way you want to go, and you can confess yourself right into earthly success.

But you know, as I thought about that, Solomon wrote, “The tongue has the power of life and death.” And we tend to think of that as being just positive and negative. You know, some people are just negative all the time. They say bad stuff and so, they drag everybody down around them. And that’s true. And, but what we need to be is positive and just build everybody up and say positive things, and encouraging things.

And up to a point, on a natural level, that’s true. But just suppose that somebody was to listen to one of these motivational speakers and just really engage every part of their being, their mind, their emotions, their words, and they confess themselves into such wealth and power that they own the whole world! Then what? What did Jesus say about that? What will it profit, if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul?

So, think about…let’s go back to the tongue part of that. What did the tongue actually produce? Did it produce life or did it produce death? See, this world is founded upon ideas, lies that have flown…thrown…whatever, they come from…flown, I guess is the word, sort of. They have flowed, from the mind, and the will or the heart of Lucifer, who felt like he could pursue his own best interest independently of God. And so, he has built an entire world system, a world order upon lies.

Those lies have been…I mean, central to the propagation of those lies has been the human tongue. And it gets obvious when Satan tears people down with other people’s tongues. That becomes rather obvious. But what we don’t always see is the philosophies, the ideas that are promoted that are supposedly high and wonderful and glorious and lead to a wonderful future. They are equally dangerous, because they are a lie from the enemy.

And you know, where it comes to God’s people, where we’re concerned…we’re not concerned about welfare in this world primarily. God is concerned about taking care…He’ll take care of His own, and He’ll accomplish His purposes even where there are difficulties to go through. But God’s purposes are not bound up in what happens in this world. We know this world is gonna pass away, and often we don’t live as if that’s really true.

We need to be…we need to realize every moment of every day that we are citizens of another world. We are here and we have responsibilities and activities and all of that, but that’s not where our heart ever needs to be. And so, what God is concerned about, and what He put this in the Book about has to do with more than simply having a positive attitude, and an upbeat and sunny personality. We’d like that, we enjoy it on the natural level, but boy, that doesn’t really lead to eternal life, does it?

Think of what Jesus said that we’ve quoted so many times in John chapter 6, and I’ve got so many different translations in my mind, I’ll give you the essence of it. But He said, “The Spirit gives life.” The only source of real life is God’s Spirit. Everything else may look like life and may feel good for a time, but it is infected with death and it leads to death.

There is no life to be found, and that’s what He says in the second part of that verse. “The Spirit gives life; the flesh…” profits nothing. In other words, anything that originates in human nature, that’s what the flesh really stands for there, it’s human nature…everything that originates in human nature leads to death. It does not profit. It cannot help God out. It cannot contribute to God.

That’s why religious effort is worthless. If it’s not actually infused with the life of God, if we are not living extensions, as it were, expressions of the Spirit of God in what we do and what we say, what are we? Are we accomplishing anything? You see how much we need the Lord? We need the Lord!

But Jesus didn’t stop there. He made the contrast, the Spirit gives life, the flesh profits nothing. The words. “…the words that I speak unto you…are spirit, and they are life.” (KJV). Let it sink in. Jesus didn’t come to do His own will, did He? God didn’t give Him a general idea of what He wanted Him to accomplish, and say, go figure it out and do it.

He knew that the only way…I mean, He lived in flesh, same as we do, but He knew the only way He could accomplish anything that was eternal, was to stay in contact with God, and to have the Spirit of God resting upon Him and inspiring what He did and what He said, so that it really wasn’t just Him saying it. The words, He said later on, that I speak to you, or the words that I do, the things that I do, it’s the Father who lives in Me who is doing His work.

And so, that is what God is seeking to bring about in our lives. And every one of us, we are on a journey at best. We have a lot of things come out of our mouths that don’t really accomplish anything or that accomplish something bad. And I just feel like the Lord wants to shine a light on this, because it is so central.

The human tongue is so central to everything that we do, all of our relationships. I mean, if we just put a muzzle on and walked around, it would be kind of a dull world. We’d be having to communicate some way, with sign language or something. But God has given us this tool by which we can communicate, but do you realize the power that is released for good or ill by these tongues?

Every one of us has a place that God has designed for you and for me and He wants to get us to the place where we can exercise ourselves in a godly way, and where this ties in with where we started is, the tongue is pretty central, isn’t it? It’s very involved in every aspect of our human life.

And if God has put you in a place, you have a powerful member of your body, and your spirit, and that will either tear down or it will minister life, it has the potential to minister life. Just meditate on some of that. Think about, what place has God put you in? What are our responsibilities?

I’ll read some familiar scriptures, just as a backdrop here. But James chapter 3 is certainly one of them. These are general principles here. But I want to tie this in with this other business of the Kingdom and the order of the Kingdom, because this is an important thing, that I…I just sense God wanting us to get this in a deeper way.

But anyway, beginning in…the beginning of chapter 3 of James. “Not many of you should become teachers, my fellow believers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly.” (NIV). So, you guys just stay back…

( laughing ).

…No. If God’s called you to be a teacher, you be one. But don’t be ambitious to try to be something that God hasn’t called you to do, all right?

“We all stumble in many ways. Anyone who is never at fault in what they say is perfect, able to keep their whole body in check.” But there’s nobody like that, is there? “When we put bits into the mouths of horses to make them obey us, we can turn the whole animal. Or take ships as an example. Although they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are steered by a very small rudder wherever the pilot wants to go.

“Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one’s life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell.”

That’s a pretty good description of the world. You know, whether you’re positive or negative, or successful or beat down, it’s all part of the same thing if it comes from the heart and the mind of Lucifer. Oh, how God longs to inject His Spirit into every equation of our lives—every part of our lives. That’s what this is about.

“With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be. Can both fresh water and salt water flow from the same spring? My brothers and sisters, can a fig tree bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Neither can a salt spring produce fresh water.” And then he goes on and talks about the wisdom from above and so on. He goes into a…he enlarges in a different direction there.

I want to turn back to Hebrews…I’m sorry, Ephesians chapter 4. There is…this theme is kind of repeated in a number of ways, but I see it leading into something that I believe is central and connecting divine order on the one hand, with the human tongue on the other. That’s kind of the equation that the Lord helped me to see. All right?

So, Paul has talked about the Gospel and what He’s brought us to…the Body of Christ, and how we’re all gonna grow up together, because everybody contributes what God gives. So, I tell you…verse 17, “So I tell you this, and insist on it in the Lord, that you must no longer live as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their thinking.” Where did their thinking come from? The tongue of the devil, one way or another, it got there. That’s where it originated.

“They are darkened in their understanding and separated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them due to the hardening of their hearts. Having lost all sensitivity, they have given themselves over to sensuality so as to indulge in every kind of impurity, and they are full of greed.

“That, however, is not the way of life you learned when you heard about Christ and were taught in him in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus. You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.”

Remember, how does God create? He speaks, doesn’t He? How does God create new life in a human heart? He speaks, doesn’t He? Remember the words of Jesus. They’re not…they’re Spirit and they’re life, they’re not just words and ideas. God has to speak to a human heart in such a way that it gets all the way down in here. And like a seed, that soil has to say, yes, I embrace that. That’s what I need.

I’ll tell you, when we do that, God brings forth a brand-new creation. If anyone is in Christ, what? He’s a new creation—a brand-new creation. There is a new creation that’s happening right now, that’s already part of what will live forever. When God get finished creating a new life in us, turning us completely into products of the new creation, the other is done away with, He’s gonna…then it’s gonna be new heavens and a new earth when He gets us finished. That’s what’s happening right now. It’s happening within the context of a broken world, but I’ll tell you, God is speaking life to human hearts. I want to listen, don’t you?

“Therefore each of you must…” Now he gets down to the individual believer. “…Each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to your neighbor, for we are all members of one body.” So now, you’re getting into the tongue, aren’t you?

“In your anger do not sin: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold.” Everybody here has done that one time or another. May God give us grace to realize what’s happening when we get angry. And we, every one of us, do. We just need the Lord’s grace to back off and say, God, if there’s a problem, let it not be in my heart. Let me let go. Praise God! Praise God! There’s freedom, if we’re willing.

All right, “Do not give the devil a foothold. Anyone who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with their own hands, that they may have something to share with those in need.”

Now, listen to what he says. “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs….” According to their needs, not your needs.

We’re pretty good at using our tongues to try to advance our cause. Isn’t it something? Did Jesus do that? Did He go around trying to win people to Himself in a selfish, prideful way? Everything He did was the Father reaching out with a heart of love for the welfare of the listener. Boy, how unlike Him we are by nature.

But you see where God is going with all of this, what He desires out of us? He has given us a powerful tool, in these tongues, and He longs to see us be able to use them in a way that they become instruments of accomplishing His purpose. I can’t do that without Him—I can’t do that without a surrendered heart, without Him actually empowering what I say. But this is what He’s talking about.

“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. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.”

Then he talks about living in love, and there’s so much here, I don’t want to try to read all of it necessarily. But I want to get down to verse 15, and let’s go past that, because I want to get to something here.

“Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is. Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another….”

Now all of a sudden, you’ve got your tongue involved again. See, there is a…there’s something God…there’s Someone…God Himself wants to live within us in a way so that we have the power to say things that actually change people’s lives for the better. You see the power you have? God has given you…this isn’t just a power to stand up here and speak, this is a power that is meant to operate person to person in everyday life. Think about that.

“Be filled with the Spirit…” And that’s that Greek continuous sense. That’s a way of life, in other words. I need to have Him in me. “…Speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

How good are we at that? Giving thanks to God for everything? There it is. It’s there, right in black and white. But you know, if we understand the heart of God and the purposes of God, we can say, Lord, thank You. I may not like this in the natural. I don’t feel good. I don’t understand it even, but I know You love me. I know your purpose is going to prevail.

I know, as we heard this morning, that you’re gonna continue to work in me until the day of Jesus Christ, and it’s gonna come out just exactly right. So, I’m just gonna be…I’m gonna be thankful for the process even when I don’t understand. That’s called faith. That’s believing God more than believing how you feel and what you want in the natural. Thank God!

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