December 13, 2017 – Wednesday
Matthew 5:22 [NLT] But I say, if you are even angry with someone, you are subject to judgment! If you call someone an idiot, you are in danger of being brought before the court. And if you curse someone, you are in danger of the fires of hell.
OK, so I was in a big hurry. A business meeting in two hours, and I was still 90 minutes away on an interstate. And I had to stop for gas and to relieve myself. After taking care of business, I walked back to my car. In route, an elderly man in front of me emptied his coffee mug onto the pavement. But instead of just pouring it out, he swung it way behind him – exactly where I was walking. Now I had coffee on my pants and suede shoes. I shouted a curse, in surprise, that remains ringing in my ears. The man turned and asked, “did I get any on you?” Thinking about the time it would now take to get presentable for the meeting, my response was simple and quick: “yes you did, you idiot!”
Idiot. Finally, back on the interstate, I started to analyze what I had said. Scripture reminded me that I shouldn’t have cursed. His Word told me I should not have called that elderly man an idiot. And for the rest of the trip, I could not focus on the meeting. I could only focus on what I did. I was now in danger of being brought to His court. In fact, I was in danger of the fires of hell.
Idiot. Turns out, I was the idiot, and not that other guy.
As you travel to work today, remember the red ink. You don’t want to be judged by Jesus. You don’t want Jesus to send you into the fires of hell. So just don’t be an idiot – in the eyes of others or in the verdict of Christ.
Whatever happens going to work today, just don’t be an idiot. Eternally there is no pay-off.
Father God, forgive me for cursing and name-calling. Help me make up for my sin the next time something goes wrong on the way to work. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
James D. Slack, Ph.D., Ph.D.
Jackson State University
Jackson, Mississippi USA