Have you ever seen someone speak the truth, but you knew that something about it wasn’t right. Perhaps it was their attitude, or maybe they were addressing a side issue when they probably should have focused on something else. In short, they spoke what they believed to be right, but it was not led by the Spirit at all. They were in the flesh, and the truth that they spoke seemed to go unheeded.
That is how the speech of many Christians is, when they do not try to give truth according to the Spirit’s leading. It’s not that God can’t do anything with that sort of speech, it is simply that He could do so much more if they would heed His leading.
Paul gives a very clear example of this when He asks the Ephesians to pray for him. He asks them to pray, “for me, that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my mouth boldly, to make known the mystery of the gospel, For which I am an ambassador in bonds: that therein I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.”
So let’s break this down, Paul asks for utterance, or speech, so he can speak boldly to preach the gospel. He mentions that the gospel is the reason he is an ambassador in bonds, and because he is an ambassador, he should speak boldly.
I think the key to truly understanding this short passage is understanding the world “utterance.” It’s a very common word that refers to spoken word or speech. Here’s the key, Paul wasn’t asking for boldness. He was asking for words so that he could speak boldly. That’s the key to understanding this whole passage.
Paul was asking that the Ephesians would pray that God would give Him the words to say so that he could speak freely and with confidence and declare the mystery of the gospel. Proverbs 25:11 says, “A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver.” If you look throughout the Bible, you will find many men of God who declare God’s truth. And when they declare it, things happen. I honestly believe the best way to declare God’s truth is to declare His truth after receiving His utterance. When you receive utterance from God, you can truly speak boldly and with freedom and declare His truth with maximum effect.
I challenge you to first declare God’s truth. Both with your life, and with your words. Secondly, I pray that you would receive utterance to speak with boldness, and that you would be sensitive to God’s leading in how and when to speak His truth.