BE IN THE WORD (This Week’s Verses):
1. What comes out of the mouth is a picture of what is in the heart:
– “Out of the abundance of the heart [the] mouth speaks.” (Luke 6:45)
– “For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.” (Proverbs 23:77)
2. What comes out of the mouth is powerful and can either cause good or cause harm (if you are causing harm even if you feel validated, you are not walking in Christ):
- “Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruits.” (Proverbs 18:21)
- “A fool’s mouth is his ruin, and his lips are a snare to his soul.” (Proverbs 18:7)
- “Whoever keeps his mouth and his tongue keeps himself out of trouble.” (Proverbs 21:23)
- “A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” (Proverbs 15:1)
- “With his mouth the godless man would destroy his neighbor, but by knowledge the righteous are delivered.” (Proverbs 11:9)
- “There is one whose rash words are like sword thrusts, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.” (Proverbs 12:18)
3. We will be held accountable for what comes out of our mouths:
- “I tell you, on the day of judgment people will give account for every careless word they speak, for by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.” (Matthew 12:36-37)
- “These six things doth the Lord hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief, A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren.” (Proverbs 6:16-19)
4. Help for our Hearts
- “Set a guard, O Lord, over my mouth; keep watch over the door of my lips!” (Psalm 141:3)
- “Out of my distress I called on the Lord; the Lord answered me and set me free.” (Psalm 118:5)
- “Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger.” (James 1:19)
- “Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.” (Ephesians 4:32)
- “Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.” (Ephesians 4:29)
BE EDUCATED (Additional Resources):
- 30 Days to Taming Your Tongue: What You Say (and Don’t Say) Will Improve Your Relationships. Certified behavioral consultant Deborah Pegues knows how easily a slip of the tongue can cause problems in personal and business relationships. This is why she wrote the popular 30 Days to Taming Your Tongue (500,000 copies sold). Now in trade size, Pegues’s 30–day devotional will help each reader not only tame their tongue but make it productive rather than destructive.
- Keep It Shut: What to Say, How to Say It, and When to Say Nothing at All. Karen Ehman addresses women and words in Keep It Shut with a kind, encouraging, and sometimes funny delivery. She explores what the Bible says about when to speak, when to remain silent, what to say in social media posts, why “just sharing a prayer request” might be gossip, and why self-talk matters too. Using words well leads to healthier relationships and the joy of seeing what God can do when he’s the one who speaks.
BE DOERS, NOT JUST HEARERS (Practical Application):
- Pray a circle around your tongue using the verses from help for your hearts.
- Put a jar at the office and get your coworkers (or you can do this at home) to put a quarter or a dollar in the jar each time someone cusses, gossips, lies, is hurtful. Become accountability partners.