Words That Control Us 5

We now know that words impose themselves upon us and that we are wise to be attentive to them and how they impact us.

We are now ready to consider the experience of having words thrown at us that we might wish to reject.  The ideal is to be able to recognise words and what they represent, so we can instinctively deflect any unwanted impact.

Playing Rugby


A friend suggested to me a simple description of the clash of jurisdictions.  We know that jurisdiction is the “right to speak” and we also know that certain environments impose constraints upon us.  For example, courts are places where we are expected to accept the authority of a judge and allow him or her to exert certain jurisdiction over us.

The example of the clash of jurisdictions that was suggested was the idea of a group of people happily kicking a rugby ball.  Imagine that you are one of them and you all enjoy chasing, kicking and catching the ball.

However, on one occasion as you run to catch the ball, you manage to grab the ball and pull it to your chest.  But as you do you immediately hear someone blowing a whistle.  You look up to see a red faced referee shouting at you that you have broken the rule.

Bemused you try to work out what is going on.  The man informs you that he is a soccer referee and you are not allowed to handle the ball.  You innocently shrug and explain that you were not playing soccer.  However, since he has the whistle, a badge, a flag to wave and a bunch of others standing around him who take him very seriously, you are not in a strong position.

The referee then begins shouting orders.  You must drop the ball, change into the right boots, get “on-side”, have a number on your back, know your position on the field, report to the bench, etc.  You try to argue about the rules of various games, but he is insistent and he is ready to have men escort you to the sin bin.

This is what happens when there is a clash of jurisdictions.

Extricating Yourself

When someone begins to impose their “overlay” of perceived rules onto you, it is important that you know how to extricate yourself.  You need to get out of the grip of the unwanted referee who is asserting himself over you.

Arguing the laws of soccer or rugby puts you in argument and the ref is not going to be impressed, nor will he want to be shown up by you.  The angrier he gets the more likely he is to overstep his bounds, when he has no rights in the first place.

Now, this is an allegory for such things as being pulled over by a policeman, accosted by some official knocking at your door, receiving a letter from the court, and so on.

In the many situations where someone is imposing their will onto you think about what you need to do.

Know Where You Stand

The first thing to determine inside yourself is where you stand.  If the referee has true authority over you then the referee has true authority over you.  Does he?

If he does not have authority and you then let him have authority, then he has authority, by your acquiescence.  Have you given him that authority?  Did you acquiesce to him? If you gave away your sovereignty, how do you get it back?

Knowing where you stand is the matter of “standing”.  Do you stand completely independent of all authority?  On what basis can you stand in such a place?  What higher authority do you appeal to that gives you any right to stand anywhere at all?

If you claim to stand under God is that just a fake claim, or do you know what God’s Word and Will is and have you truly submitted yourself to that word and will?  If you are claiming to stand in God-given authority but your life is an offence to God, you have no true standing.

Take Your Stand

Once you know where you stand then do all you can to take that stand.  The Apostle Paul put it this way about 2,000 years ago: “When you have done everything you can to stand, Stand!” Ephesians 6:13,14.

This means you resist the overlay of other people’s words and impositions.

You don’t have to be aggressive or belligerent in doing this.  The polite way to do so is to give Conditional Acceptance and to ask questions.

When someone asks, “What is your name?” you may reply by asking, “Who is asking for my name?”

You can then follow with: “What is your name?” “What is your purpose?” “Is there a problem?” “Do you have some claim against me?”

You can also let them know that you do not acknowledge their authority by saying something like, “I do not recognise you.” This tells them that their claim to authority is not registering on your radar, and it tells them that you are choosing not to defer to their claim of authority over you.

Stay Private

Governments, officials, police, courts and so on, are overlays.  The men and woman who hold official office and titles, such as policeman, judge, etc, were born naked and will take nothing with them when they die, just like every other man or woman on the planet.

So their official status is an “overlay”.  It is not inherent in their DNA or their natural existence.

So we separate the natural reality of flesh and blood men and women enjoying their natural existence, from the artificially created imposition of the world of fiction, created by words, labels and overlays.

The natural world is referred to as your “private” existence.  In that existence you have great freedom to enjoy life.

The fictional overlay that is superimposed over natural men and women is the “public” world.  In that world you are trapped by various rules and regulations, constraints, impositions, etc.

If you are living in your private existence, and can “stay in the private”, you are not subject to the impositions of the overlay.

Do Not Contract

When you defer to the artificial, fiction overlay of people’s words, titles, and so on, you effectively enter into contract with those things, that they are real and have power over you.  It is like accepting the demands of the official soccer referee when you were only having a kick around of rugby with your friends.

Do not enter into such contract. Step away from such offers of contract, either by conditional acceptance (I will listen to you once you prove you have right to impose your rules on me when I am not in your game), or by letting them know you do not “recognise” them.

That’s where the “Return to Sender” process, linked to a notice of “No Contract”, fits in.  When you get an official letter and you return it because you do not have contract, you have deflected its impact.

However, if you are part in contract and part out of contract you will get tangled up and end up in trouble with that angry referee.  So be quite clear where you stand.

Words To Live By

Life and death are in the power of the tongue (Proverbs 18:21).  And if you think about it there is no more authoritative voice in all eternity than that of our creator.  So the Word of God is living and powerful and brings life like no other word can.

You are living by words right now.  The Word of God sustains everything (Hebrews 1:3).  But you are also living by other words too.  Some of those words have brought life and some have brought death to you, in the form of limitation, cutting off your freedoms, and so on.

Now that you know much more about the impact of words I encourage you to search out words worthy of your creator and your eternal destiny.  Seek the good words to live by.

And while you are finding the right words to govern your life, be sure to words of life into others.

And may this exploration of words that control us bring you into new freedom and blessing.

Words That Control Us 3

We have seen how words impose authority over us, rightly and wrongly.

This article explores the options you have in responding to the words that are projected against you.

It may well be that you are rejecting words you should be heeding.  And it is also possible that you are responding to words that you should be ignoring.

Some Words Stick


The Prophet Jeremiah prophesied to the nation of Judah over two and a half millennia ago, almost 600 years before Christ.  Because he warned that King Nebuchadnezzar would make a second attack on Jerusalem and kill the people his message was rejected.

At one point Jeremiah wrote a lengthy prophecy and sent it to King Jehoiakim.  The king listened as the message was read to him, but then threw the message, page by page, into the fire.

The king and the people rejected the message but they could not change its accuracy.  The message was from God, Himself.  Jeremiah spoke with true, divine jurisdiction.  And so the prophesied destruction came, while Jeremiah was locked in the prison and spared from death.

The Word of God is not a word to be rejected no matter how much we don’t like it.  It is God’s living word and it brings about divine outcomes.  When we receive it in faith it impacts our natural life with divine grace.  If we reject it we will ultimately stand before God to accept the punishment for our rejection of truth.

Just as King Jehoiakim could not destroy the word of God, neither can you.  So making your own god or choosing to believe something that suits your sensibilities will make no difference.

Some Words Crumble

Just as Jeremiah’s words proved to be truly from God, other prophets in his day who opposed him gave empty prophecies.  Grand promises of deliverance were given by those who stood against Jeremiah.  Yet it was Jeremiah’s message that proved true.

And that reminds me of the prophecy given by Elisha when the Syrians surrounded Samaria and the people were starving.  Elisha prophesied that food would be abundant and cheap by the next day.  An attendant of the king scoffed at such a preposterous suggestion, but it came to pass.  The words stood true.

The scoffing of the king’s attendant were the words that crumbled.  In fact he was trampled to death in the stampede of people rushing out to the abandoned enemy camp to grab all the provisions left there.

Various Responses

So far we have seen that words spoken to people can be responded to in a variety of ways.

Words can be respected and obeyed, like the man who pulled his car over at the police officer’s demand and had his car commandeered for the policeman’s purposes.

Words can be rejected and thrown in the fire, as King Jehoiakim did to Jeremiah’s prophecy.

Words can be waited upon, such as the warring tribesmen did when Mary Slessor sent her nonsense message cloth.

Words can be deflected by responding with questions to challenge the jurisdiction of the one asking.

Words can simply be ignored, as many people do who have a copy of the Bible and never read it or attend to what it says.

Return to Sender

John Harris of the People’s United Community in the UK (tpuc.org) recommends that people simply return official documents to the sender.  John initially advocated writing “RTS” on the envelope, but subsequently recommended writing “No Contract. RTS”, or “NCRTS”.

Others suggest returning official letters with a stamp or sticker affixed, so you are not putting your own handwriting on the document.

John Harris points out that if you do not have a contract with these entities and they are trying to impose their will on you, you can simply send their attempts back to them, unfulfilled.

By returning the mail you show that you have not opened or accepted it.  Thus they cannot claim to have some “contract” with you by your acceptance of their documents.

Even if the document appears quite impressive, like Mary Slessor’s wax sealed cloth, it can be sent back without you accepting the imposition of authority by that entity.

Question The Authority

Another approach is to question the asserted authority, to expose its lack of jurisdiction.  This is exemplified in the Roger Elvick questions which he used in court, and which are linked to the Toothpick Story mentioned earlier.

The three questions Roger Elvick used to respond to a judge trying to impose authority over him are:

What is your name?

Do you have a claim against me?

Do you know anyone who does have a claim against me?

The 1215.org site suggests that the judge or official, such as a police officer, will remain silent.  That silence is taken as acquiescence or default agreement and confirms that there is no claim against you.  The site claims, “if somebody fails to respond or is standing mute it literally means you are in control and they are waving their rights.”

So you then discharge the matter.  In court Roger Elvick would say, “I request the order of the court be released unto me immediately.”  When there is no order to be released to you, you say, “It appears as though there is no more public business here. I’m out of here.”

Conditional Acceptance

Rather than rejecting the attempted assertion of authority, it is suggested that we should accept it, on conditions.  An example of this kind of conditional acceptance is seen in the encounter of Jesus Christ with some religious leaders in his day, 2,000 years ago.

The leaders asked Jesus, “By what authority are you doing these things?”  Jesus advised them that he would answer their question if they first answered his.  He then asked if the baptism preached by John the Baptist was from God or from man.

The leaders did not want to answer, as any answer would cause them trouble.  So Jesus also declined to answer their question.  See the historical record at Matthew 21:23-27.

You might respond to a charge sent you by a council or court by saying something like, “I am happy to pay the amount requested upon proof that the claim is lawful.”  This is conditional acceptance of the offer or claim.  But in practice it puts the weight of responsibility onto the other person to prove their right to make any claim.

Asking Questions

In Conditional Acceptance you can see again the merit of asking questions in response to approaches made by others.  The person asking questions is in charge.

Remember the man who was called upon by a policeman to pull his car over.  Rather than object, argue or ignore the policeman, the man simply asked a question: “Is there some problem, officer?”

Think about questions you can ask that do not taunt the other, but put them on notice that you are a sovereign and are not yielding to their demands that your obey them.

However, if the other truly does have authority they have the right to demand a response, as God did when He called out to Adam in the Garden of Eden, and as God did when He challenged Job.

Words That Impose Themselves on You

The next consideration is the impact of words and their magical power to impose themselves and plant thoughts into our hearts and minds.

This is a major aspect of how Words Control Us, and so we will look at that in the next lesson.