Every Idle Word Prov. 12:16-23 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO
“Every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment,” Matt 12:36. The Lord can judge every idle word that comes out of a man’s mouth – that’s because the mouth speaks from what is on the inside, Matt 12:34-35 – therefore, our mouths are an indication to us about the condition of our hearts!
In this text we have a good way to tell whether we are foolish or wise – by the idle words proceeding from our mouths. They could be:
Angry words – v.16 – these would indicate that we are fools, Prov 14:17, Tit 1:7 – a prudent man on the other hand can keep his mouth when something upsets him and he thereby covers his shame.
True words – v.17, 19, 22 – true words are an indication of a righteous man, a wise man – a man who speaks “right” – you check him out and his words are right on the money – his words are established for ever like the words of the Bible because they are truth – a false witness on the other hand would show you a deceitful man, a fool – if you lie a little from time to time you are deceitful – that’s the condition of your heart – that’s what you are – a deceiver, like the devil – a truthful man won’t lie, he’s wise – a liar is just going for what’s expedient (but for a moment) – the liar is abomination to the Lord and thus winds up with the devil in the lake of fire, Rev 21:8, Rev 20:10 – on the other hand the Lord is delighted with the words of truth (there’s wisdom in those).
Murderous words – v.18 – you speak to the destruction of others (character assassination) your words are like a sword, Ps 64:3 – these make you a fool – God is the judge not you – you aren’t going to bring a man down that God wants to use by your murderous words – God will turn against you – conversely, the words of the wise man will be like health – a doctor uses a scalpel to heal you – he may have to cut but his goal is your health – so he’s wise.
Peaceful words – v.20 – these are the words of a wise man and the result is joy – they are seen in the ministry of reconciliation – the deceiver will use a peaceful presentation to trick you – he’s a fool like the foolish shepherd (Zech 11:15-17, Dan 8:25, I Thes 5:2) – the words of Jesus are peaceful words.
Knowledgeable words – v.23 – a wise man who really knows something just bides his time and holds his tongue – you can draw it out of him but he is not going to run around like these talk show hosts and keep proclaiming his egotistical “wisdom” for the day – a fellow asked a wise friend how he could make good decisions – his friend answered that wise decisions are the result of experience – the fellow asked his wise friend where he got his experience – his friend replied, “Bad decisions” – when a man knows he comes to the point – he knows most of the world isn’t interested in what he knows so he’s not going to waste his time trying to convince them – after all he’s right – but the fool is just going to shoot off his mouth – though you are saved by the foolishness of preaching, those words are true and delightful to the Lord!
So are you a fool or are you wise?