- There are 20 verses in the KJV Bible that have the word “conversation” in them.
- There are many Christians who do not care at all about their conversation with others.
- The word “conversation” is defined as the act or an instance of talking together; exchange of ideas, opinions or interests.
- The archaic meaning as in the bible means…manner of living; behavior.
- Hebrews 13 is a chapter that focuses on Christian behavior or Christian ethics. If you want to know how Christ expects His followers to act and behave…read and do as it says in Hebrews 13.
- All through the book of Hebrews, Paul preaches Christ as their Lord, cling to Christ follow Christ, accept Christ, He is above all and all that you need.
- Summing all Paul’s teachings up coming into chapter 13, he is saying… “Now that you have Christ as your Lord and Savior, this is how you ought to live.”
- You may ask me… “Bro. Ron, why is a message on “conversation” so important?
- I’ll tell you why. Because we are Christians who preach the gospel of Jesus Christ. And if we are to proclaim His doctrines then we should be able to match that with our life.
- If you watch T.V. or read the newspaper or magazines you will notice that the programming or articles are supported by commercials which advertize products in which they are trying to sell to you are get you to buy.
EXAMPLE; Let us say that I am a celebrity selling a car for Ford Motor company and I want people to buy it. How do I get people to buy it? I endorse it by buying one myself, driving it daily and let people know how good of a car it is and how it meets my every need, and how very economical and easy it is to operate and how it would protect me in a crash and so on.
- If I am a Christian trying to sell the gospel of Jesus Christ, I need to ask Jesus to be my Lord, live for Him everyday walk in His ways, talk like Him, and let them know how Jesus meets my needs, protects me and cares for me and so on.
- If I do not walk, talk or support the local church as Jesus teaches us to do, then how would I expect the unsaved person to buy into what I am selling?
- If I cannot practice what I preach then I should close my mouth and have no conversation on the subject.
- God wants us to witness to the world by “communication.”
- In essence, chapter 13 is telling us this…“Here’s the life you’ll have to live if you’re going to stand in the face of the world and proclaim the cause of Jesus Christ.”
- (continued) And believe me, if we do not support Christianity by our lives, then in the face of the world we make God a liar, we make Jesus Christ a fraud, and we make Christianity a joke if our lives do not support what we say.
I. Let Thy Conversation Be
A) Without covetousness
- I would like for us to look at our text verse of Hebrews 13:5…Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.
- You should remember that as we said earlier about the word “conversation” in the bible is used 20 times and usually means differently than it is used today.
- As in this verse 5, when Paul tells the Hebrews “Let your conversation be without covetousness;” he is saying let your conduct, actions, or behavior (In which could also be the words you say or ASL signs you use) be that which does not create covetousness in you or others.
- What does that mean? If I am talking to a member in the family about buying an ice cream cone and they do not have the money for one and I go ahead and buy myself one and eat it in front of them…I am then creating a situation where it causes the other family member to covet my ice cream cone.
- Paul tells the church at Philippi on Philippians 1:27…Only let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ: that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel;
- When Paul tells them “…let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ” He is basically saying that your behavior should be so good that it causes others to desire Christ and share His gospel.
- Paul further ads that no matter if I am with you or in another city, that your conversation (behavior) would be recognized by others as a Godly nature striving together in the faith.
B) In the past
- Paul writes to the church at Galatia in Galatians 1:13…For ye have heard of my conversation in time past in the Jews’ religion, how that beyond measure I persecuted the church of God, and wasted it:
- Everyone knew of Paul’s past and how he tormented, arrested and had many Jews killed for being believers in Christ.
- A bad past is hard to erase from the memories of those it affected. But with God, all things are possible.
- Bad conversation should be put in the past as Paul tries to do here in Galatians 1:13… “ye have heard of my conversation in time past”
C) Put off
- Look at what Paul tells the church at Ephesus in Ephesians 4:22…That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts;
- The term “put off” in our KJV Bible means… to do away with, or not do it anymore. It has the connotation of taking off a dirty shirt.
- In this passage of scripture, Paul is talking about new converts. Paul is talking about new babes in Christ. They are to “put off” or remove the dirty habits, the dirty mouth, the dirty ways, the dirty mind, the dirty heart.
- Christ is “the cleanser” for dirty laundry. He is “the purifier” for wretchedness (sinfulness).
D) In Heaven
- Have you noticed that these passages of scripture are all from Paul?
- In fact, 2 of the 20 passages of scripture on “conversation” were from David. 10 are from Paul, and 8 from Peter.
- Paul and Peter were conversationalists. After Paul’s conversion from Judaism to Christianity, he was an authority on Christian conversation (behavior).
- Philippians 3:20…For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ: 21) Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself.
- The word “conversation” here in this verse has a different meaning. The word “politeuma” translated in the Greek means citizenship. The unique thing is that this word in the Greek refers to a colony of foreigners which is described as a group of people that lived in the capital city which kept the names of its citizens on a register.
- Our citizenship is in heaven. We are foreigners on earth and our home is in heaven where God has a list of our names on a register (the book of life).
II. Conversation of Husband and Wife
A) Of the wife
- In chapter 2 of Peter’s first letter he taught that living successfully as a Christian in a hostile world would require relating properly in two places; The civil society and the work place.
- In chapter 3 we will note that Peter gives a third place for properly relating as a Christian to the world…the family.
- Peter starts off with the wife… 1 Peter 3:1…Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands;
- Why was Peter writing this letter to the churches? Because they had a problem in this area. Wives were not being subjective to their husbands.
- God has always looked to the man as the leader of the home and the wife has a secondary role in the home to be “subject (surrendered)” to her husband.
- Now this verse is talking about women who have accepted Christ and their husband has not. It also applies to women who are married to a believer and is not following Christ as he should be. Note verse 1b…“…that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives; 2) While they behold your chaste conversation coupled with fear.
- If a husband is disobedient to God’s word what does Peter say they are “REQUIRED” to do? “…be won by the conversation of the wives” What does this mean? The wife is to keep up her Christian behavior, her Christian ways, her Christian mind, her Christian talk and walk so that her husband may see how he is supposed to act and be blessed of God when being obedient.
- If a wife talks bad about her husband, disrespects him as her husband, or refuses to be submissive to him it makes her look bad, her children look bad and more importantly it makes our Savior look bad.
B) The Husband
- Look at God’s requirement of the husband… I Peter 3:7…Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge,
- Peter tells us husbands to “dwell with them” meaning to “live with them” and become one according to the knowledge of God that you should have a a follower of Christ and believer in God.
- How do we live with our wife?
- “…giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel,” This does not mean that she is spiritually weaker because she is equal with us in Christ. It means simply that she is physically weaker and in need of our protection, provision, and strength. To honor someone is to praise them and revere them above yourself.
- “…and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.
The “grace of life” here that Peter is talking about is “the marriage.” Marriage is the best relationship that this earthly life has to offer.
- Husband and wife are to complement each other, make each other look good, and serve God together in their marriage by showing the world what a relationship with God can do for a marriage.
C) What keeps the couple happy
- II Peter 3:11…Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness,
- These verses refer to the day when God purifies this earth by burning it up and then creating a “new earth” for His people to live on.
- We as husband and wife are to live our lives in anticipation for the day that our marriages will be dissolved to then be married to Christ as His adorned bride and live happily ever after.
- See this in verse 12) Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat?
- Note verse 13) Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.
- In the new heaven and new earth we will live in righteousness, meaning that we will do what is right because right now on this earth we do not do what is right.
- We are selfish in our desires as a couple. It is all about me and what I want and when we are in Christ it should be all about “Him (Jesus)”
- As a couple we are to do this…14) Therefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things,
- “…be diligent” painfully working hard to stay together as a couple which requires sacrificing always for one another.
- “… that ye may be found of him in peace,” We are to be at peace with one another, not mad, fighting, arguing, and creating havoc.
- “… without spot,” We are to have a character that is spotless, which means without sin.
- “… and blameless.” We are to have a reputation of a godly couple and a reputation of being full of love as our heavenly Father is.
What is your “CONVERSATION” like today?