February 24

Matthew 12:32-34 32Anyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but anyone who speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in this age or in the age to come. 33"Make a tree good and its fruit will be good, or make a tree bad and its fruit will be bad, for a tree is recognized by its fruit. 34You brood of vipers, how can you who are evil say anything good? For out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speak.

Jesus had just restored a man's withered hand on the Sabbath. The people were in awe and wondered if Jesus was "the Son of David". That was a reference to the promise of God that the son of David would reign forever. The religious leaders said it was because the Prince of demons helped him.

Jesus was walking in the power and direction of the Holy Spirit. His words were from God. He did nothing on His own. He said if someone speaks against me it will be forgiven, but you will never be forgiven for speaking against the Holy Spirit. He referred again to fruit as the distinguishing characteristic of the tree. Jesus can't go about constantly doing good by the power of the Prince of demons. A person who demonstrates the power of the Holy Spirit by doing good and speaking truth is connected to the source of goodness. Condemn his works and you are condemning the goodness of God demonstrated by the working of the Holy Spirit.

Jesus pulled no punches in telling them that they were bad trees. He called them a swarm of baby snakes. Their words confuse and distort what is real, causing the seeking soul to be led astray. That is what was in their hearts. Have you paid attention to the words that come from your lips? Are they honest, loving, truthful, in line with God's word and His Spirit? Do they direct people to Jesus or away from Him? Do they nurture the seeking soul or pull the seeker to someone other than Christ? If your words trouble you, check your heart condition. Fill it with the Word of God and a desire to yield to the Holy Spirit. Then our mouths will overflow with goodness.

Consider: Your heart is the well, and your mouth is the bucket.