He Who Guards His Mouth

It is essential for us to guard our heart in order to guard our mouth. When the heart is sound, good things will come out of it. The tongue-mouth constitute enmity of man because it can destroy others and ourselves. James said, we all often stumble and fall and offend in many things. And if anyone does not offend in speech, he is a fully developed character and a perfect man, able to control his whole body and to curb his entire nature; the tongue is a little member, and it can boast of great things… the tongue is a fire, a world of wickedness set among out members, contaminating and depraving the whole body and setting on fire the wheel of birth, being itself ignited by hell; the human tongue can be tamed by no man. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison. With it we bless the Lord, and Father, and with it we curse men who were made in God’s likeness! Out of the same mouth comes forth blessing and cursing. These things, my brethren, ought not to be so (James 3). We all are guilty of sometime hurting those we love with our tongue. It is not a good thing to demonstrate our anger through the mouth. The heart demands vengeance, but YAHSHUA left us with the example of love and forgiveness. Taming the tongue is walking in faith, knowing that vengeance belongs to the Lord and without faith one cannot please God.

The consequences of using the mouth to utter idle words are evident in the words of YAHSHUA. Idle means in this example careless or inactive or unprofitable. YAHSHUA contrasted the good things coming from a good heart with the evil things coming from an evil heart. He said we are going to give an account for every idle word we speak. Something to consider is to guard the heart so as to not let empty and unprofitable words come out of it next time we have the opportunity to do so. Like David, we must strive not to transgress with our mouth (Psalms 17: 3) we must make an effort to muzzle it in times of temptation. We know that the consequences from words we speak affect the body. When we sin with it, then our body will suffer. Do not allow your mouth to cause your body to sin, says Solomon (Eccl. 5:6a), for words are very powerful. In fact he said, Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and they who indulge in it shall eat the fruit of it (Prov. 18: 21). There is a saying that “those who say what they want, will hear what they do not want.” The fruit of an evil tongue destroys many physically and emotionally. The words we speak are consequential. When we speak well to and of others, we are edifying the heart, comforting the emotion of one who is suffering and giving hope to the hopeless. But when we curse someone, use our words falsely against our neighbor, or friends, we are establishing our own fate and at the same time the fate of others. Peter said if we want to enjoy life and see good days, we must keep our tongue free from evil and our lips from guile (I Peter 3: 10). Diseases are in some measure the result of idle words we use. When the Prophet Isaiah saw the Lord, he saw how evil his heart was through the uncleanness of his lips. The Apostle Paul warned against them. He said, Put them all aside: anger, wrath, malice, slander and abusive speech from your mouth; do not lie one to another, since you laid aside the old self with its evil practices, and have put on the new self who is being renewed to a true knowledge according to the image of the One who created him; whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father (Col. 3: 8-10,17).

Listening ears are more profitable than a tongue that rattles all the time. There is the danger of too much talking. In many of our words we show folly and lack of discernment. Whoever keeps his mouth and tongue keeps himself out of trouble (Prov. 21:23). Rushing of words causes us to regret, for we say things without first thinking. The Word of God says when angry, do not sin. There are several ways to sin when we are angry, and one of them is with our tongue. Our hearts, when full of bitterness, let out hurtful words, causing damage in the emotional and physical level of others. In Psalm 141:3 the Psalmist prayed, Set a guard, O Lord, before my mouth; keep watch at the door of my lips.; let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Your sight, O Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer (Psalm 19: 14). Never say anything that you will regret later, but keep your mouth shut in times of trouble. The Prophet Amos said, Therefore, he who is prudent will keep silence in such a time, for it is an evil time (Amos 5: 13). A soft answer turns away wrath, but grievous words stir up anger (Prov. 15:1), and a man has joy in making an apt answer, and a word spoken at the right moment- how good it is! (Prov. 15:23).

God created our body and its members to be used, besides their physical functions, to bless and to praise Him. In the process of doing that our heart must be clean of anger and bitterness. When David was in the wilderness of Judah, although persecuted without cause of his own, he prayed to the Lord and confessed his devotion to Him. My mouth, he said, shall praise You with joyful lips (Psalm 63: 5b). Those were hard days for him, but in the midst of them, he found reason to praise and to be thankful to the Lord, because his heart was right before the Lord. His lips could only utter praises to Him in thankfulness from a heart that loved Him. No wonder he was called a man after God’s heart! How about your heart?

Author: Jacinta da Cruz Rodgers

I have been committed to teaching the truth of the Word of God beginning with Trans World Radio on Bonaire, N.A and Swaziland, Africa (1969-1980), then through churches in the United States in both English and Portuguese and then through ministry in Israel (2005-2006). This ministry continues through local Bible studies and outreach to the world via the internet. I have written a book about my life from that of an orphan in Brazil to missionary in 5 countries. You can find out more on the "Book" page of our blog site.

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