Wisdom for Life, Part 8, Wisdom Regarding Speech, Aug 19, 2012

– Christians are to give careful heed to their speech, avoiding corrupt words, speaking that which edifies. (Eph. 4:29)
– Christians are to give careful heed to their speech, abstaining from filthy talk, giving thanks instead. (Eph. 5:4)
– Christians are to give careful heed to their speech, recognizing ultimately it is a heart issue. (Luke 6:45)
– Christians are to give careful heed to their speech, recognizing the authority and control. (James 3:2)
– the power of speech – both to tear down and to build up. (Prov. 11:9,11,4:24,29:20)
– words are powerful: “You have never spoken a neutral word in your life. Either your talk brings life or brings death.” Paul Tripp (Prov. 18:21)
– words lure men away into adultery (Prov. 7:5,21,11:9)
– words scorch close relationships (Prov. 16:27-28)
– harsh words create anger, on the other hand, soft words remove wrath (Prov. 15:1)
– words heal wounded hearts (Prov. 12:18)
– honest words are like a lover’s kiss (Prov. 24:26)
– a word fitly spoken is like a sweet fruit tray at a dinner party (Prov. 25:11)
– Destructive use of speech:
– Lying – which is an abomination to God (Prov. 6:16-19,12:22)
  – often fostered by hatred, in efforts to hide hatred and trying to disguise one’s true feelings (Prov. 10:18,26:24-28)
  – which will prove to be short-lived, just for a moment, sweet at first, but only a fleeting fantasy (Prov. 12:19,20:17,21:6)
  – lying will eventually destroy the liar, and often the one lied about
– Flattery – not sincere compliments, but deceitful praise to win another’s favor and to manipulate. Also a source of ruin. (Prov. 26:28,29:5)
  – also a source of ruin, often crushing others by entrapping those who are flattered
  – lyke lying, flattery can destroy both the user and the subject of it
– Gossip – also knows as the tale-bearer, slanderer, whisperer (Prov. 11:13)
  – who reveals secrets, unlike a faithful person (Prov. 17:9,16:28,20:19)
  – whether true or not is incidental; gossip destroys both the user and the subject
  – speaking evil of others harms one’s self as much as those spoken against
– Good words: words of the righteous (Prov. 10:11,20-21)
  – a well of life, as choice silver, that feeds many
– Pleasant words (Prov. 16:24)
  – like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul, health to the bones
– Comforting words (Prov. 12:25)
  – addressed to the anxious and depressed, making their hearts glad
  – such speech reveals the good heart of the speaker
– Timely words – well-timed words (Prov. 15:23,25:11-12)
  – spoken in due season, how joyful and good it is, like apples of gold in settings of silver, well-thought words (Prov. 15:28)
  – studied carefully by a righteous person, on how best to answer
  – such speech reveals the wisdom of the speaker
– Controlled words – that benefits the one who speaks (Prov. 13:2-3,21:23,15:1-2)
  – preserving the life of the one who guards his mouth, defusing potentially violent situations, keeping one’s soul from trouble, that reveals true knowledge and understanding (Prov. 10:19,17:27-28)
  – by sparing words, with a calm spirit, which even a fool can benefit from
  – such speech will enhance the reputation of the speaker
– from Proverbs we learn the value of being careful of our speech – avoiding much harm to ourselves and to others, doing much good to ourselves and to others
– which may help us appreciate why Paul was so concerned that Christians let their speech always be with grace (Col. 4:6)
– let no unwholesome words come out of their mouths, only good words (Eph. 4:29, Ps. 19:14)