Has your spouse ever spoken words to you that had a sting to it? The kind that seemed out of character for them? Oftentimes our feelings override our reason and keep us from bringing the situation to a peaceful resolve.
A few years ago Tom said something that was totally out of character for him. Rather than believe the best about him and overlook it, I took it to the next level of conflict. I listened to the voice in my head that was using scripture in a way that seemed right at the time.
What I heard was, “Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks!” Luke 6:45B
I used this scripture to declare Tom guilty by the words he used. After all, he said it because it was in his heart. No matter what he said to me in remorse, I couldn’t let him off the hook. Had I realized one important fact, it would have spared us months of conflict.
What is the one fact? I had taken the Bible verse out of context.
This is a tactic the enemy of our souls used against Jesus while He was tempted in the wilderness. And the same tactic he used with Eve in the Garden. He chose only the second part of the verse to help me build my case against Tom. Had I read the entire verse I would have seen that this verse doesn’t apply to Tom at all, or the conflict we were having.
“The good person out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.”
This verse is talking about the difference between those who are good and those who are evil. To use this scripture the way I had done was unbiblical, even though it sounded right. Which brings me to another verse I should have remembered…
“There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death.” Proverbs 14:12 ESV
Our conflict lasted a year because of my misapplication of scripture.
Lesson learned: If you are in the midst of conflict and using scripture to justify your stance, take time to look it up. You may discover the voice you’re listening to isn’t wisdom, but folly. Taking Bible verses out of context is a ploy of the enemy, and the remedy is to flee!