Hebrews 3:12-13 says, “Beware, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God; but exhort one another daily, while it is called ‘Today,’ lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.”
On the surface this verse may seem complicated, but the theme is really quite simple. This is another scripture telling us that we who are believers need to encourage each other daily in order to keep unbelief out of the Church. It is our duty to encourage one another.
When I was in high school, several of my friends had a little game that we would play from time to time. We would randomly pick out some student and convince this student that he or she was sick. Here is how we did it. Each of us would, one by one, make comments to the chosen student in passing.
For example, as one of us would meet the chosen victim in the hall we made comments such as, “Are you feeling okay today? You look a little pale. Are you feeling good?” Usually within hours the victim had gone to the clinic and gone home, thoroughly convinced that he or she was sick. We didn’t realize the spiritual principles behind what we were doing, but we knew it worked. (I later realized this was a very mean thing to do.)
We know there is power in the spoken word. Many scriptures tell us that what we say in the natural realm, what we say with our mouths, has great impact in the spiritual realm. But did you know your words also have great impact in the physical realm? That’s right! Not only do our words carry power into the spirit world, but they make a difference right here on earth.
The opening passage here, Hebrews 3:12-13, tells us that we must encourage one another in order that there will not be an “evil heart of unbelief” within us. We must lift each other up and encourage one another in order to combat doubt. What is the best way to combat doubt? The answer is through speaking the encouraging promises of God instead of the discouraging problems all around us.
We must be encouragers daily. When we see a Christian (or anyone else) who is down, we should give an encouraging word. “Home on the range” shouldn’t be the only place where there’s never heard a discouraging word. Our churches and homes should be that way also.
One of the main reasons a person might have doubt is from a lack of the knowledge of the Word of God. That’s why our encouraging words must be Bible based. When I say we should encourage one another, I am not saying we are to lie or try to deceive ourselves. I’m not talking about empty flattery. But what I am saying is we must speak God’s Word daily to each other. Whether we see the promise or not we must speak the promise. Speaking the promise is a key ingredient in faith.
Doubt feeds on ignorance. When you don’t know God’s Word or His will, you will feed your doubt. And that is the opposite of what God told us to do. He said we were to increase our faith, not our doubt. That’s why we are to encourage one another with the Word of God. The Word contains faith.
Too often Christians will speak what they see instead of what the Word says. That shouldn’t be. We are not of this world, but we are now living in it. We will always see the negative. That is why we are told in God’s Word to walk by faith and not by what we see.
So, when we get together, let’s do as the Bible says. Let’s speak the Word and we will be encouraged and faith will grow.