A man’s belly shall be satisfied with the fruit of his mouth; and with the increase of his lips shall he be filled.
Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.
~~ Proverbs 18:20-21 (KJV)
These verses are all about speech, appropriate speech and inappropriate speech. The tongue is a small member of the body, but it has great power.
My son, if your heart is wise,
then my heart will be glad,
my inmost being will rejoice
when your lips speak what is right. ~~ Proverbs 23:15-16 (NIV)
Your lips can speak foolishness bringing all kinds of adverse consequences. If you speak wickedness many ills can befall you including the destruction of the city.
Flattery, slander, gossip, hurtful talk, quarreling, lying, all are condemned in today’s reading. How many of us have said something in the heat of a moment that we wished we could “un-say.”
It doesn’t happen. Once a word is spoken and heard, it is forever in the memory of the hearer.
The closing verse for today says:
The tongue has the power of life and death,
and those who love it will eat its fruit. ~~ Proverbs 18:21 (NIV)
My grandmother used to say: “Let your words be sweet and tender; you never know when you may have to eat them.”
Grant us the wisdom to speak only those things which are healing, uplifting, beautiful, profitable, honorable, and reverent. Help us to tame the wild tongue.
In Jesus’ most precious name.