The Tongue

In Matthew 12 we see three different instances where the Pharisees tried to find fault in Jesus and in his disciples. The last instance they accused him of casting out demons by the authority and power of Beelzebub. In other words, they were saying, “Satan is behind the words and power of Jesus.” Jesus then begins (v25f) to prove why it is that he cannot be casting out demons by the power of a demon. Starting in verse 33 we read, “Either make the tree good and its fruit good, or else make the tree bad and its fruit bad; for a tree is known by its fruit.” We should not expect good things to come from someone who does not practice good. For example, we would not want to encourage a habitual traffic offender to become a driving instructor. A tree is known by its fruit.

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II Peter 3: The Flood and Judgment

The Preacher writes in Ecclesiastes 8:11, “Because the sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily, therefore the heart of the sons of men is fully set in them to do evil.” If a criminal successfully eludes being caught, he is certainly going to be more willing to commit the crime again. Unfortunately, man has this same outlook on their spiritual life. Because God does not come quickly, man is inclined to commit evil. Man says, God has not come yet, so I'm safe to continue in sin. 

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God's Justification of Man

In court a man might claim he hit another fellow because he was defending himself. The judge or jury would look through his case, and if they felt he was “justified,” they might proclaim him not guilty. We use this word justification frequently in relation to our justice system. A man might commit an act that at any other time would be considered against the law, but if he is justified in doing so, the judgment will prove him free from guilt. 

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