“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. You brood of vipers, how can you who are evil say anything good? For out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks. The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in him. But I tell you that men will have to give account on the day of judgment for every careless word they have spoken. For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned.” Matthew 12:33-37 (NIV)
Our Lord Jesus also spoke the following words in the Sermon on the Mount: By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? Likewise every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them. Matthew 7:16-20 (NIV) Indeed, good trees will produce good fruit. There are no picking grapes or figs from thornbushes or thistles, Amen? We are a product of what is in our hearts because we will act on what we believe to be true. And out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks and the hand moves. And the only person we are held accountable for is the person sitting in the chair we are in.
It matters greatly how we live this one life we have been given. We must seek to keep a tender conscience – being aware of the smallest sin and keeping our accounts short with the Master. Sin never gets better undealt with – it keeps going lower still unless handled. We are to attack it as a vicious foe – because it is. If we do not kill sin it will be killing us. If we are still here, none of us are there, Amen? As the Holy Spirit brings to light our transgressions we are to deal with them. They are not our friend and they do not simply get better by disregarding them. We are to educate your souls with the beauty of holiness and the horror of iniquity and we will be blessed in this endeavor. We get to choose how we live this one life and we are each held accountable for our choices. We can build upon the Rock of Christ or the sands of this fleeting world – and only the things done for Christ will last. We must remember as well, we are not our own. We have been bought by a high price and we are to honor God with our bodies – in all that we say and do and think. And He is not a hard Master or a kill joy, rather a loving Father Who desires only what is good and pleasing and perfect for every heir of mercy. It is sin that kills joy. When we choose to go our own ways – we choose what leads to death and not life. Freedom comes from being yoked to Him and not to the world which always leads to bondage and decay not life in abundance.
“Son of man, say to the house of Israel, ‘This is what you are saying: “Our offenses and sins weigh us down, and we are wasting away because of them. How then can we live?”’ Say to them, ‘As surely as I live, declares the Sovereign LORD, I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that they turn from their ways and live. Turn! Turn from your evil ways! Why will you die, O house of Israel?’” Ezekiel 33:10-11 (NIV)