ACTS 14:1-2 NKJ 1 Now it happened in Iconium that they went together to the synagogue of the Jews, and so spoke that a great multitude both of the Jews and of the Greeks believed. 2 But the unbelieving Jews stirred up the Gentiles and poisoned their minds against the brethren.
Not a very positive title for a devotional. But we can still learn from this example and then make sure we avoid having our minds poisoned and most definitely not poisoning others.
Paul and Barnabus were reaching a great amount of people, both Jews and Greeks, in Iconium. But whatever it was, jealousy or religious anger, the Jews who did not believe were incensed and began to say things. What they were saying caused some of the Gentiles in Iconium to turn against Paul and Barnabus.
We don't know what exactly they said, but we know the effect, and it was bitter, negative, poison. Two things that stand out in this passage, words can reach people and bring salvation. Words can poison people and turn them away from God and from good people.
When the pandemic of 2020 hit, I was impressed by the Lord to stay away from the news. So much negativity and questionable accuracy was actually poisoning my mind. After reading/watching, I realized I was going negative instead of staying positive, staying in faith that God would see us through. So, I stopped the poison. Words can lift or lower us, and we have to determine what we are going to give our attention to. God's word is pure, never poison, so we are always safe consuming His word, spending time in scripture.
Gossip is poison. Slandering others and posting false information is poison. There is so much poison in the world today I determine in my heart not to have my mind infected and not to poison others.
Dear Lord, help me keep my mind clear of the poison that's out there. And help me be one who spreads grace, not poison to others.