Many times a year there are new and inspiring articles in the Philadelphia Trumpet and Royal Vision that provide topics for discussion.
With all Sabbath conversation, approach it in a positive manner and from God’s point of view. Instead of focusing on complaining about how hard the work week was, discuss how glad and thankful you are that God has allotted one day a week as a day of rest.
Young people are certainly not exempt from these principles of proper Sabbath conversation. No teenager is too young to read the Trumpet, Royal Vision and the news of the Work.
The main reason the ancient Israelites were taken captive by the Assyrians and Judah by the Babylonians was that they profaned the Sabbath Day! Much of this Sabbath-breaking was due to the carelessness of later generations. The later the generation, the more it seems we take things for granted, especially when it’s something many of us have heard all our lives. As young people, we should strive to read the Trumpet articles and listen to the Sabbath messages and discuss them with our peers, as well as the adults.
How to Converse
Knowing what to talk about means little if we don’t know how to talk. The Bible is full of precious gems of wisdom concerning this subject, especially in Psalms and Proverbs. But let’s first go back to Matthew 12. Jesus said, “But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, “they shall give account thereof in the Day of Judgment” (verse 36). We will be held responsible for every word we say! That alone tells us we ought to be very careful and think things through before we speak. How we use our tongue can have a tremendous impact—positive or negative. “So the tongue is a little member and boasts of great things. How great a forest is set ablaze by a small fire!” (James 3:5, Revised Standard Version). It is clear that God is very concerned about what we say. Keep that in mind before starting any conversation.
Proverbs makes it clear we should not only be careful what we say, but how much we say. “In the multitude of words there wanteth not sin: but he that refraineth his lips is wise” (Proverbs 10:19). In other words, “When words are many, transgression is not lacking,” as the Revised Standard Version states it. Instead of trying to be the center of the conversation, set a goal to get a good conversation started and allow for others to get involved. A lot can be said in just a few words.
Another important principle is found in Proverbs 18:13: “He that answereth a matter before he heareth it, it is folly and shame unto him.” Allow others to finish their point, and be careful not to interrupt. Then after you have thoroughly thought about what to say, respond when the opportunity presents itself and not before.
Use Sabbath fellowship to get others involved who may sometimes be more quiet or reserved, or to speak to those you only see at services and who may have traveled great distances to be there. Make an effort on the Sabbath to talk to someone you do not converse with often.
Keep in mind that those who are just visiting may only know you, or remember you, for the few words you said to them in fellowship. Don’t pretend to be someone you aren’t, but be careful to leave a good impression. Think before you speak!
As with everything, Christian fellowship should be done in moderation. It should always be secondary to our fellowship with God and Jesus Christ. Occasional fellowship on Friday evening or going out for dinner after services on Saturday is appropriate. Just don’t let it take you away from your fellowship with God.
Christian fellowship is vital for spiritual growth. An inspiring conversation on the Sabbath can be a huge lift for someone who may have had a particularly tough week. The tongue is indeed a powerful tool. It can pierce someone like a sword if used in the wrong way, or it can heal if used in the right way (see Proverbs 12:18). Another proverb says, “The tongue of the just is as choice silver …” (Proverbs 10:20). Do our words come out as “choice silver” or as an old rusty piece of metal?
Notice Proverbs 25:11: “A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver.” What an inspiration our conversation can be! Like apples of gold in pictures of silver! Don’t take Sabbath fellowship for granted. Rather, use fellowship to stimulate spiritual growth not only in your life, but in others’ too!