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How to Speak the Truth Plainly - Daily Hope with Rick Warren - February 8, 2021

  • 2021 Feb 08

How to Speak the Truth Plainly
By Rick Warren

“Above all, my brothers and sisters, do not swear—not by heaven or by earth or by anything else. All you need to say is a simple ‘Yes’ or ‘No.’ Otherwise you will be condemned.” James 5:12 (NIV)

When James tells us not to swear, he's not talking about profanity. He's talking about making an oath by referring to something else, as if you don't have enough integrity in yourself to keep your own word.

Swearing “to God” is taking his name in vain. But you should also never say, “I swear on a stack of Bibles” or “I swear on my mother's grave.” You cheapen your own integrity when you have to appeal to something besides your own character.

As a follower of Jesus, your word should stand on its own. Just speak the truth plainly! Don't embellish it. Don't shade it. Don't twist it. If you mean yes, say “yes.” If you mean no, say “no.” Do this even when it feels like very few people in politics, the media, or even in your own circle are doing it.

James was not the first person to say that speaking the truth plainly is the foundation of all integrity. In fact, his half-brother, Jesus Christ, said it, and Paul said it too (anytime God says something three times in Scripture, you better believe it's important to him).

Paul says, “Do you think I am like the people of the world who say ‘Yes’ when they really mean ‘No’? As surely as God is faithful, our word to you does not waver between ‘Yes’ and ‘No.’ For Jesus Christ, the Son of God, does not waver between ‘Yes’ and ‘No’” (2 Corinthians 1:17-19 NLT).

When so many people seem to be speaking lies or half-truths, then speaking plainly, with integrity, will make you countercultural. It will also make you more like Jesus; he never wavered between yes and no. Being more Christlike should be your motivation for having integrity.

In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus said, “But I tell you, do not swear an oath at all: either by heaven, for it is God's throne; or by the earth, for it is his footstool; or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the Great King. And do not swear by your head, for you cannot make even one hair white or black. All you need to say is simply ‘Yes’ or ‘No’; anything beyond this comes from the evil one” (Matthew 5:34-37 NIV).

If you're going to be a faithful disciple of Jesus Christ, you need to have integrity. You can start building integrity today by speaking the truth plainly.

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the lords prayer childrens book daily hope rick warren october 2021 offerBuild a Firm Foundation of Prayer in the Next Generation!

“Perhaps the most important role you can play in the life of a child is teaching them to trust God through prayer. It’s the key to living with hope.” —Pastor Rick

That’s why it’s so important to strengthen the hope of kids by introducing them to Jesus’ model for prayer at an early age. And we’re excited to help you do that with Pastor Rick’s children’s book, The Lord’s Prayer: Words of Hope and Happiness.

Filled with thoughtful insights from Pastor Rick as well as stunning illustrations from award-winning artist, Richard Jesse Watson, this book brings the poetic scripture from the King James Version alive for readers young and old. It’s sure to become a meaningful bedtime ritual, a treasured memory, and by God’s grace, a legacy that bears good fruit for generations to come.

This book is a perfect way to share the beauty and richness of The Lord’s Prayer with the children the Lord has placed in your life. And it’s our thanks for your gift below to help Daily Hope take the Good News to more people everywhere. So please request a copy for yourself or a friend today, and thanks for your generosity!

*The USA IRS code permits you to deduct the amount of your financial gift to Daily Hope that exceeds the fair market value of materials you received from Daily Hope.

This devotional © 2018 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

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