Mouthwash Not Hogwash
“You brood of vipers, how can you who are evil say anything good? For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.”
Mathew 12:34 (NIV)
Oral hygiene has developed enormously over the past decade. Mouthwash manufacturers claim that their particular product will brighten, whiten, sanitise, destroy plaque, freshen breath, multi protect mouth and teeth, etc. Indeed, if all the claims are true, our mouths would be totally clean and completely disinfected, with no more decay!
Perhaps an antonym of mouthwash should be hogwash. ‘Hogwash’ is a very old word going back to the Middle Ages. Obviously there is a reference to the filthy water used to wash pigs. There is, however, another meaning. A dictionary definition states that hogwash is, ‘meaningless or insincere talk, writing, etc.; nonsense; bunk.’ This second denotation is more applicable in the 21st century. This type of discourse leads to decay of the soul.
There was an adage in the last World War that said ‘Careless talk costs lives.’ The fear was that fifth columnists might hear things that would harm the nation. Pointless chatter or gossip about someone is hurtful, causing untold harm. There is an apt description of hogwash in God’s word (Psalm 5:9), “Not a word from their mouth can be trusted; their heart is filled with malice. Their throat is an open grave; with their tongues they tell lies.” Another scripture tells us in Luke 6:45, “A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.” The mouth and heart are responsible for good and evil.
Hogwash, that is, careless talk, often leads to sin. If only we had a mouthwash that could wash out any hogwash that was in our mouths and hearts! Now for the good news—there is! Believers in Jesus Christ are wholly cleansed by His redeeming blood. 1 Corinthians 6:11 says, “And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.” And in John 15:3, “You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you.”
We need to be thankful for the purity that our Saviour gives, and diligent not to take it for granted.
Thank you Lord Jesus, for your precious gift – you have washed us clean from the filth of our sins. Help us by the power of the Holy Spirit to remain free from sin.
Study by Irene Wilson
Worldwide Church of God Watford
St. Peter’s Church
61 Westfield Avenue
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