Again in today's reading Solomon emphasizes the tongue. In chapter 21:23 we read, "Whoso keepeth his mouth keepeth his soul from troubles." All too often the tongue gets us into trouble!
It has been said that God wants the Christian to live in such a manner that he would not be afraid to sell his talking parrot to the town gossip! How often we bring unnecessary trouble down upon our heads because of what we say. Better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to open one's mouth and prove it!
Peter often experienced the displeasure of the Lord because of his thoughtless words. On one occasion he took Jesus aside and began to rebuke Him because the Saviour had foretold of His soon suffering and death. In the midst of this rebuke, Jesus suddenly turned and said, "Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offense unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men" (Matthew 16:23). In the very next chapter, Peter sins again by wanting to build three Tabernacles: one for Jesus, one for Moses, and one for Elijah. In the Upper Room (John 13) Peter blurted out his refusal to allow Christ to wash his feet. Then, beside an early morning fire, Peter denied the Saviour three times. May David's prayer become our prayer: "Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord, my strength and my redeemer" ( Psalm 19:14).
When we speak, we should be sure that we speak the truth, with kindness, and that what we speak is needful to be said. If we examine our words carefully in relation to truth, kindness, and need, then truly God has control of our tongue.
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