Read Proverbs 16
Proverbs 16 has a lot of from the Lord; but the Lord; to the Lord; or in the Lord. The rich, the poor, the wicked, the just, fools, wise, truth, lies — all are spoken of here. Lots of living is covered. The lazy sleep so soundly they go hungry (Prov. 19:15), and some are so lazy they won't lift a finger to feed themselves (19:24). The value of instruction from God (16:16,22; 19:8,20-21,27).
The judgment day of Christ may reveal that the damage done by loose talk will far exceed the damage done in any other way. An ungodly man diggeth up evil: and in his lips there is as a burning fire. A froward (perverse) man soweth strife: and a whisperer (talebearer) separateth chief friends (Prov. 16:27-28).
The destructive force of the tongue never ends; our words will go on and on from mouth to ear and ear to mouth, spreading damage as they go. A wicked doer giveth heed to false lips; and a liar giveth ear to a naughty tongue. . . . Excellent speech becometh not a fool: much less do lying lips a prince (17:4-7). A fool's mouth is his destruction, and his lips are the snare of his soul (18:7). A person can repent and be forgiven, but no one can retrieve words that have been spoken. The careless words of the tongue release a deadly stream that flows on and on, spreading death wherever it goes. Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof (18:21).
Many careless words we spoke in the past may have seemed like idle words, but they are no longer idle; they are very busy now working great damage. The words of a talebearer are as wounds, and they go down into the innermost parts of the belly (18:8). Let us always be alert and separate ourselves from all associations that would involve us in careless talk lest we jeopardize our God-given usefulness to Him.The psalmist's prayer, a much-needed prayer, should be ours: Set a watch, O Lord, before my mouth; keep the door of my lips (Ps. 141:3).
The tongue which by mercy and truth iniquity is purged (Prov. 16:6) has a moral and spiritual healing influence. It speaks peace to the troubled conscience and soothes the anguish of the afflicted. It subdues the passions of anger and heals divisions. When the tongue makes known the saving power of God, it points the lost and dying to eternal life.
Not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man; but that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man (Matt. 15:11).
Thought for Today:
He that covereth a transgression seeketh love; but he that repeateth a matter separateth very friends (Prov. 17:9).
As the One who punishes the proud (Prov. 16:5). Jesus said: Whosoever exalteth himself shall be abased (humbled); and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted (Luke 14:11). As the Friend that sticketh closer than a brother (Prov. 18:24), Jesus is our Friend (John 15:14-15) and will never leave (us), nor forsake (us) (Heb. 13:5).
16:2 spirits, motives; 16:8 without right, dishonestly gained; 17:18 striketh hands . . . surety, gives a pledge to be responsible for his neighbor's debts; 18:2 discover itself, express itself; 18:3 with ignominy reproach, with dishonor and disgrace; 19:3 fretteth, is resentful; 19:7 they are wanting to him, they abandon him; 19:13 a continual dropping, an unending irritation.
Pray for Staff: Michael Moore • Government Officials: Gov. Charlie Crist (FL), Sen. Claire McCaskill (MO), and Rep. Edolphus Towns (NY) • Country: Poland (38.6 million) in eastern Europe • Major language: Polish • Religious freedom • 96% Roman Catholic (including Greek Catholic — .31%); 1.56% Orthodox; .5% Protestant; .01% Muslim; .01% Far Eastern Religions; 1.7% Other • Prayer Suggestion: Trust in the Lord: where He guides, He provides (Ps. 16:1-8).
Memory Verse for the Week: