Matthew 9:4 – Knowing their thoughts, Jesus said, “Why do you entertain evil thoughts in your hearts?” NIV
Good question! My wife reminds me many times that “You can think whatever I want but you can’t always say it.” While Jesus would have us curb our tongue from hurting others by making unkind and sarcastic comments or being argumentative just to stir things up, I’m pretty sure that He would not totally agree with that comment.
I don’t have to make an audible comment about a woman to have lust for her in my heart. No one knows but God and me. I can harbor bitterness and anger against someone without saying a word. Held long enough, it will usually breakout in words or actions. I can be jealous or covetous without vocalizing it, but inside it’s tearing me up.
Jesus had just told a paralytic man, “Take heart, son; your sins are forgiven.” Having said that he knew that there were those listening who were not saying anything directly to Him, but they were saying to themselves, “This fellow is blaspheming!” Jesus went on to heal the man and them ask another question that I’ll deal with separately.
However, why do we many times assume the worst? Why do we not engage in dialog with people we don’t understand? Why do we hang onto evil thoughts and let them warp us and enslave us when God would heal and free us? It may be time to let go of some of that garbage that fouls up our internal lives.