Blake Allen, Student and Outreach Minister, LHBC

Matthew 5:37
37 Let what you say be simply ‘Yes’ or ‘No’; anything more than this comes from evil.

One of the things I think our culture struggles with is letting their yes be yes and no be no. We live in a “maybe culture” where our word doesn’t really matter. We constantly look for loopholes to get out of things. For example, have you ever told a friend “maybe” in response to an invitation of some sort, knowing full and well you never had any intention of accepting the invitation? Or have you ever tried to find loopholes at work or school that lessens your responsibility or workload? We have all at some point failed to let our yes be yes and no be no. 

Our Word Matters To Christ. 

Our word matters to Christ. This passage is a part of the sermon on the mount. Jesus was basically calling out the Pharisees for trying to find loopholes in God’s commandments. They made themselves to be super religious but their righteousness was actually lacking. This is why Jesus told His disciples that if their righteousness did not surpass that of the Pharisees, they could not enter into the kingdom of heaven. What loopholes were they trying to find and what are some loopholes that we try to find? One of the examples Jesus gives is around the topic of adultery. When we hear the term adultery, we may try to limit that definition as intercourse by a married person with someone who is not their spouse. But Jesus takes this furthermore by saying that, “whoever looks at another lustfully has committed adultery in their heart.” Another example Jesus gives is around the topic of murder. We may say we have never committed murder but Jesus says, “if you have had anger in you heart towards another you have murdered them in your heart.” Jesus’ point is there are no loopholes when it comes to God’s expectations. You either follow his commands entirely or you break them. 

Our Word Matters To People:

When we fail to fully commit to our word or seek to find loopholes in our commitments to others, we are actually giving people a reason to doubt everything we say. This includes our testimony to them about the Gospel! Why would non-believers trust anything we say about the Gospel if they can’t trust anything else we say? Why would they commit to Christ when we break our commitments to them?  Growing up my dad used to always say this phrase: “your word is your bond. When you break your word, you break trust.” And when you break your trust in the eyes of others, you give them reason to doubt your testimony. Your word matters to others. 

Friends, it’s time to change the “maybe” culture. It’s time to honor our commitments to God and others. It’s time to let our yes be yes and no be no. 

Father, help us to be a people who honors you with our commitments. May we follow your word fully and commit ourselves to you. Help us to be a generation of people who seek to fulfill their commitments, and view them as important. Amen. 

Galatians 5:13- For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.