Blessings to you in Yeshua the Messiah, and thank you for standing with us!
Evil Tongues and the Apostle Jacob (James)!
In these weeks’ Torah portion, traditionally chapters 12-13 of Leviticus are being studied. They speak not only about the cleansing of women, but also a strange skin disease – “Metzura” in Hebrew. This word is often translated as leprosy or defiling skin disease. Experts say that this disease has nothing to do with ordinary leprosy, since it was not bacterial. But externally it looks terrible.
These diseases appeared on houses, in the walls of dwellings where idols were being hidden, as well as on people who were speaking evil. “Metzura” in Hebrew is an abbreviation for “Lashon HaRah” – meaning an “evil tongue.” In the days of Moshe, the cleansing process involved repentance and separation from society!
Quite often, the Apostles, when they were writing their epistles (usually to a non-Jewish audience), used the interpretations of the texts that were common for Jews in order to show the believers from the nations the rationality of God’s commandments. The Apostle Jacob (James) used the same principle of “Metzura – or the Evil Tongue” – in the context of his recommendations to believers. For example:
Not many of you should become teachers, my fellow believers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly. (James 3:1-2)
The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one’s life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell. (James 3:6)
The texts accordingly speak of the importance of watching your language, especially for those who teach. And in fact, this applies to everyone, because even though we may not be a biblical teacher, we teach our children, or someone else … and our language can become evil, defiling a brother, or distorting the truth. What is this EVIL Tongue? Well, of course, examples include gossip, false witness, and unfounded criticism. What a pity that these simple things still harm the Body of the Messiah today. And the Lord arranged it in such a way that today nothing may appear externally on the “human body,” but God forbid, that internal “leprosy” might affect our lives. Let us watch our language and draw from the Lord the Good, instead of the Evil.
God wants our tongue to serve Him, to encourage, to bless, and to build up. Therefore, it is said:
I am the LORD your God,
who brought you up out of Egypt.
Open wide your mouth and I will fill it. (Psalm 81:10)
In prayer for you, our friends, we ask His mercy and blessings upon you!
Thank you for supporting us and enabling us to serve Israel in the Name of Yeshua the Messiah.