THE POWER OF THE TONGUE
We know there are a small percentage of people that whatever is said to them, they will tend to misinterpret what is said and filter the words through past experiences perhaps, and the end result is that they feel “hurt” in reality to a great degree they have simply hurt themselves. Then there are many people who have had harsh hurtful words spoken to them, that leaves a deep wound, and we know too many stories of people who have withdrawn from a church because of such an experience, and some never go looking for another church. A person’s reputation can be killed simply by saying for example “Bill is a nice guy “BUT” a seed has been planted by that single word, that from that day on, there is a cloud over Bill, in the minds of those who heard those words.
I am reminded today of the words of Solomon who said in Prov. 18:21 NKJV Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will its fruit. The MESSAGE SAYS Words kill, words give life;they either poison or fruit – you choose.
James also has a lot so say about the tongue in James 3:5-6 NKJV Even so the tongue is a little member and boasts great things.
See how great a forest a little fire kindles! And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity. The tongue is so set among our members that it defiles the whole body, and sets on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire by hell. For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and creature of the sea, is tamed and has been tamed by mankind. But no man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. Just as a simple spark can cause a massive bush fire, so can ill chosen words.
King David prayed a very powerful prayer in Psalm 141:3 NKJV Set a guard, O Lord, over my mouth; keep watch over the door of my lips. The MESSAGE says Post a guard at my mouth, God, set a watch at the door of my lips.
I think David is saying, “Lord I need your help, I am so aware of my depraved heart”, and we need to make this the prayer of our heart too, so we can say with David in his prayer in Psalm 19:14 NKJV Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in Your sight, O Lord, my strength and Redeemer.
A favourite Scripture of mine is Heb. 3:13 HCSB But ENCOURAGE each other DAILY. When I was appointed to the Faculty of my denomination’s Theological College, I was also appointed Dean of Men, and this scripture was really impressed on my heart by the Holy Spirit, and I made a practice that if I saw a student around the campus, I would pray, Lord give me a word of encouragement for this guy, I could write a book regarding the many times the Lord gave me a word that ministered to a student’s heart that often even produced tears, I felt privileged to be able to speak into their heart.
Paul writing to the young Minister Timothy in 1 Tim. 6:12 NKJV Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, to which you were also called and have CONFESSED THE GOOD CONFESSION (of faith) in the presence of many witnesses.
May the Lord help us to regularly make a good confession and not a negative one, and that our words always bless and encourage others and give glory to our Sovereign God Amen.