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SIH’s Think On These Things: Proverbs 12:17-20

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SIH TOTT ICONHe layeth up sound wisdom for the righteous (Prov 2:7)

 

Wisdom’s Opposing Counterparts: Harmful Speech (Part 1): Proverbs 12:17-20

17) [He that] speaketh truth sheweth forth righteousness: but a false witness deceit.
18) There is that speaketh like the piercings of a sword: but the tongue of the wise [is] health.
19) The lip of truth shall be established for ever: but a lying tongue [is] but for a moment.
20) Deceit [is] in the heart of them that imagine evil: but to the counsellors of peace [is] joy.

In this section of our study, we are presented with harmful speech which is the counterpart to a lifestyle that uses uplifting, truthful, wise speech to help others and glorify the Lord ….

EXPOSITION:

17) [He that] speaketh truth sheweth forth righteousness: but a false witness deceit.
1.  The wise display honest and sincere speech which presents their lifestyle as being one of submission to the Lord and alignment with His laws.
2.  Those who consistently bear an untrue testimony for personal gain displays himself as being guilty of fraud and treachery

A true witness delivereth souls: but a deceitful [witness] speaketh lies.”   (Proverbs 14:25)

18) There is that speaketh like the piercings of a sword: but the tongue of the wise [is] health.
1.  There exists those whose words will cut and devour like a sword
2.  There are also those whose speech brings strength and healing to those who are frail and sick.

Thy tongue deviseth mischiefs; like a sharp razor, working deceitfully.  Thou lovest evil more than good; [and] lying rather than to speak righteousness. Selah.”   (Psalms 52:2-3)

19) The lip of truth shall be established for ever: but a lying tongue [is] but for a moment.
1.  When honest, sincere truth (especially the truth of the Word), because it is truthful, will have a sure foundation so that it will not be defeated nor proven false.  Also, the one speaking will be respected and trusted due to the reliability of his words.
2.  The words of a deceitful tongue will only last a short period and then, once proven false will become useless.  So, too, the speaker of lies will not be trusted by others but will be ignored due to the unreliable nature of their speech.

 “Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.”   (Matthew 24:35)

 That the triumphing of the wicked [is] short, and the joy of the hypocrite [but] for a moment?  Though his excellency mount up to the heavens, and his head reach unto the clouds;   [Yet] he shall perish for ever like his own dung: they which have seen him shall say, Where [is] he?”   (Job 20:5-7)


20) Deceit [is] in the heart of them that imagine evil: but to the counsellors of peace [is] joy.
1.   The root cause of deceptive speech is a deceptive heart.  It is due to a set of desires that long to take advantage of others that evil plots are borne.  Lying speech is many times an integral part of these evil, fraudulent plans of the wicked.
2.  For those who bring peace and harmony to their hearers by sharing spiritually uplifting and beneficial counsel will possess great joy.  This joy will come knowing that they are faithfully serving the Lord by helping others through their words.

He that hateth dissembleth with his lips, and layeth up deceit within him;  When he speaketh fair, believe him not: for [there are] seven abominations in his heart.   [Whose] hatred is covered by deceit, his wickedness shall be shewed before the [whole] congregation.”   (Proverbs 26:24-26)

Finally, [be ye] all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, [be] pitiful, [be] courteous:  Not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing: but contrariwise blessing; knowing that ye are thereunto called, that ye should inherit a blessing.  For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile:  Let him eschew evil, and do good; let him seek peace, and ensue it.  For the eyes of the Lord [are] over the righteous, and his ears [are open] unto their prayers: but the face of the Lord [is] against them that do evil.  And who [is] he that will harm you, if ye be followers of that which is good?”   (1 Peter 3:8-13)

SUMMARY:

Our speech is a wonderful indicator of the spiritual condition of our heart.  Do we love the Lord and desire to obey Him?  If so our speech will be uplifting, sharing the Word of the Lord, seeking to meet the needs of others.  This is a direct result of seeking to love the Lord with all our hearts and others as if they were ourselves.

Do we live our lives selfishly?  If this is the case our speech will be spoken to mislead and take advantage of others.  It will be spoken from a heart that only cares about how our speech will affect ourselves with little or no concern for its affects on others.

What does our speech teach us about ourselves?

By God’s grace, let us all study these proverbs diligently, giving them the value that they deserve.

May the Lord bless us as we receive this sound wisdom and then “Think On These Things”.

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9 Comments

  1. […] SIH’s Think On These Things: Proverbs 12:17-20 | SettledInHeaven … […]

  2. SLIMJIM says:

    While seeing this application primarily for my own speech towards others first, nevertheless I also see this passage has bearing for today’s current event with our politicians willing to lie and cover up the Bengazi affair with words that’s not totally accurate. Thank you for this exhortation from Scripture.

  3. I love your second point on verse 18 Rob. May my speech be a healing agent.

  4. Loved this…well…okay…I LOVE this series….but hey just wanted to say…thanks and Glory to the Light that shines in your every word Brother! Shalom (peace) and chested (mercy/grace) in Yeshua our Word!!

  5. […] SIH’s Think On These Things: Proverbs 12:17-20 […]

  6. How true that our speech reveals the condition of our hearts.
    Psalm 19:14 Let the words of my mouth and the mediatation of my heart be acceptable . . .
    Psalm 141:3 Set a watch O Lord before my mouth: keep the door of my lips.

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