Definition: Unduly intimate or forward; excessively bold, presumptuous, rude, disrespectful.
1. Familiarity leads to a loss of respect for one another.
Matthew 13:55a,57 [The familiarity of Jesus’ Own family and neighbors caused them not to take Him seriously:] Is not this the carpenter’s son? 57 And they were offended in Him. But Jesus said unto them, A prophet is not without honour, save in his own country, and in his own house. [See Mark 6:3]
John 6:42,43 And they said, Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, Whose father and mother we know? How is it then that He saith, I came down from Heaven? 43 Jesus therefore answered and said unto them, Murmur not among yourselves.
John 7:3-5 [Jesus’ Own brothers mocked Him] His brethren therefore said unto Him, Depart hence, and go into Judaea, that Thy disciples also may see the works that thou doest…. If Thou do these things, shew Thyself to the world. 5 For neither did His brethren believe in Him.
2. Familiarity often comes from seeing someone with the eyes of the flesh (carnal thinking) instead of the spirit.
Romans 8:5-7 For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. 6 For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. 7 Because the carnal mind is enmity [deep-seated hatred] against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.
1 Corinthians 2:14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
Galatians 5:16,17 This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh. 17 For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would.
[See also Job 15:12,13; Mark 7:21-23; Titus 3:2]
3. Idle, unprayerful talk plants the seeds of familiarity.
Proverbs 10:10 A prating [idly chattering] fool shall fall.
Proverbs 10:19 In the multitude of words there wanteth not sin: but he that refraineth his lips is wise.
Proverbs 15:4 A wholesome tongue is a tree of life: but perverseness therein is a breach in the spirit.
Ecclesiastes 5:6a Suffer not thy mouth to cause thy flesh to sin.
1 Corinthians 15:33 Be not deceived: evil communications corrupt good manners.
1 Timothy 1:4,6 Neither give heed to fables and endless genealogies, which minister questions, rather than godly edifying which is in faith: so do. 6 … Some having swerved have turned aside unto vain jangling [meaningless talk].
1 Timothy 5:13 And withal they learn to be idle, wandering about from house to house; and not only idle, but tattlers also and busybodies, speaking things which they ought not.
2 Timothy 2:16,17b But shun profane and vain babblings: for they will increase unto more ungodliness. 17b And their word will eat as doth a canker.
2 Timothy 2:14 Of these things put them in remembrance, charging them before the Lord that they strive not about words to no profit, but to the subverting of the hearers.
2 Timothy 2:23 But foolish and unlearned questions avoid, knowing that they do gender strifes.
Ecclesiastes 5:2,6 Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be hasty to utter any thing before God: for God is in Heaven, and thou upon earth: therefore let thy words be few. 6 Suffer not thy mouth to cause thy flesh to sin … wherefore should God be angry at thy voice, and destroy the work of thine hands?
Proverbs 21:23 Whoso keepeth his mouth and his tongue keepeth his soul from troubles.
Ecclesiastes 10:11 Surely the serpent will bite without enchantment; and a babbler is no better.
4. Familiarity often leads to foolishness, and vice versa.
Proverbs 10:23a It is as sport to a fool to do mischief.
Proverbs 15:2 The tongue of the wise useth knowledge aright: but the mouth of fools poureth out foolishness.
Proverbs 15:14 The heart of him that hath understanding seeketh knowledge: but the mouth of fools feedeth on foolishness.
Proverbs 17:20b He that hath a perverse tongue falleth into mischief.
Proverbs 29:9 If a wise man contendeth with a foolish man, whether he rage or laugh, there is no rest.
Ecclesiastes 10:12b,13 The lips of a fool will swallow up himself. 13 The beginning of the words of his mouth is foolishness: and the end of his talk is mischievous madness.
5. Uphold the spiritual standard. Break out of familiarity.
Proverbs 9:6 Forsake the foolish, and live; and go in the way of understanding.
Proverbs 14:7 Go from the presence of a foolish man, when thou perceivest not in him the lips of knowledge.
1 Corinthians 2:2 For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and Him crucified.
1 Timothy 4:12 Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity.
1 Timothy 6:3,4,5b If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, even the Words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to Godliness; 4 He is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings, 5b From such withdraw thyself.
2 Thessalonians 3:6 Now we command you, brethren, in the Name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition [godly instruction] which he received of us.
Ephesians 5:11 Have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.
6. Guard against familiarity through soberness.
Romans 12:3 For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.
Ephesians 5:21 Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God.
1 Thessalonians 5:5,6 Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness. 6 Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober.
1 Peter 1:13a Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober.
1 Peter 4:7 But the end of all things is at hand: be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer.
1 Peter 5:8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the Devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.
7. Avoid familiarity through prayerful communications with others.
Psalm 17:3b I am purposed that my mouth shall not transgress.
Psalm 39:1a I said, I will take heed to my ways, that I sin not with my tongue.
Psalm 141:3 Set a watch, O Lord, before my mouth; keep the door of my lips.
Proverbs 15:28a The heart of the righteous studieth to answer.
Ecclesiastes 5:2 Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be hasty to utter any thing before God: for God is in Heaven, and thou upon earth: therefore let thy words be few.
Colossians 4:6 Let your speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.
James 1:19 Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath:
James 1:26 If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man’s religion is vain.
8. How would we behave if Jesus were physically present?
Job 31:4,5a Doth not He see my ways, and count all my steps? 5a If I have walked with vanity.
Job 34:21 For His eyes are upon the ways of man, and He seeth all his goings. [See Proverbs 5:21]
Psalm 69:5 O God, Thou knowest my foolishness; and my sins are not hid from Thee.
Proverbs 15:3 The eyes of the Lord are in every place, beholding the evil and the good.
Jeremiah 16:17 For Mine eyes are upon all their ways: they are not hid from My face, neither is their iniquity hid from Mine eyes.
Hebrews 4:13 Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in His sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of Him with Whom we have to do.
[See also 2 Chronicles 16:9]
9. Avoid familiarity by talking about edifying things.
Psalm 50:23 Whoso offereth praise glorifieth Me: and to him that ordereth his conversation [conduct] aright will I shew the salvation of God.
Proverbs 8:6 Hear; for I will speak of excellent things; and the opening of my lips shall be right things.
Proverbs 8:8,9 All the words of my mouth are in righteousness; there is nothing froward or perverse in them. 9 They are all plain to him that understandeth, and right to them that find knowledge.
Proverbs 15:23 A man hath joy by the answer of his mouth: and a word spoken in due season, how good is it!
Isaiah 50:4a The Lord God hath given me the tongue of the learned, that I should know how to speak a word in season to him that is weary.
John 12:32 And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto Me.
Ephesians 4:29 Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.
Philippians 1:27a Only let your conversation be as it becometh the Gospel of Christ.
Philippians 4:8 Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think [and talk] on these things.
James 3:13 Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? let him shew out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom.
10. Word-based conversations help keep us in the Spirit.
Deuteronomy 6:6,7 And these Words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: 7 And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.
Psalm 119:172a My tongue shall speak of Thy Word.
Jeremiah 23:22 If they had stood in My counsel, and had caused My people to hear My Words, then they should have turned them from their evil way, and from the evil of their doings.
John 6:63 It is the Spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the Words that I speak unto you, they are Spirit, and they are life.
Ephesians 5:18,19 Be filled with the Spirit; 19 Speaking to yourselves in Psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord.
1 Peter 4:11 If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to Whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.