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The Wisdom of Proverbs Regarding the Tongue

Updated: Mar 13, 2019

Written by Alan ~

“To know wisdom and receive instruction in wise dealing, righteousness, justice, equity, to give prudence to the simple, knowledge and discretion to the youth, let the wise hear, and increase in knowledge…” The first few verses of Proverbs are kind of an introduction to the book and what reading and applying them can do for you. (Notice that it applies to both wise and simple!) I have some earmarked in some of my Bibles that are favorites that I would like to share with you.

Speech is favorite topic of Proverbs. Consider that many consider a person weak who holds his tongue; however…

10:19—When words are many, transgression is not lacking, but whoever restrains his lips is prudent.

29:11—A fool gives full vent to his spirit, but a wise man quietly holds back.

29:20—Do you see a man who is hasty in his words? There is more hope for a fool than for him.

18:2—A fool takes no pleasure in understanding, but only in expressing his opinion.

12:16—The vexation of a fool is known at once, but the prudent ignore an insult…

As a matter of fact…

17:28—Even a fool who keeps quiet is considered wise, when he closes his lips he is deemed intelligent. (It is believed that this is the origin of the modern proverb “Better to remain silent and thought a fool than to speak and remove all doubt”)

Of course, many times the reason why a person can’t keep their lips quiet is a lack of self-control, of which the Proverbs says...

19:11—Good sense makes one slow to anger, and it is his glory to overlook a matter and...

16:32—Whoever is slow to anger is better than the mighty, and he who rules his spirit than he who takes a city.

The results of the use of our tongue can be destructive, or healing:

12:18—There is one whose rash words are like sword thrusts, but the tongue of the wise brings healing,

15:1—A soft answer turns away wrath, but harsh words stir up anger.

18:19—A brother offended is more unyielding than a strong city, and quarreling is like the bars of a castle.

So let’s try to follow Jesus’ teaching about peacemakers,

calling them children of God:

16:24—Gracious words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the body…..and

17:9—Whoever covers an offense seeks love, but he who repeats a matter separates close friends

~ Alan

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