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Christianity: the tongue

Luke Breuer
2009-04-03 23:32 UTC

introduction
Matthew 15:16-20
Are you also still without understanding? Do you not see that whatever goes into the mouth passes into the stomach, and so passes on? But what comes out of the mouth proceeds from the heart, and this defiles a man. For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, fornication, theft, false witness, slander. These are what defile a man; but to eat with unwashed hands does not defile a man.
Jeremiah 17:9
The heart is deceitful above all things,
and desperately corrupt;
who can understand it?
2 Timothy 2:16-17a
Avoid such godless chatter, for it will lead people into more and more ungodliness, and their talk will eat its way like gangrene
themes
  • Jesus is the Word of God
  • the tongue destroys and spreads like fire
  • the tongue is like a double-edged sword (indeed, see Hebrews 4:12)
  • our words direct our actions
  • evil words are insidious; see hydrofluoric acid:
    Hydrofluoric acid is extremely corrosive and a contact poison. It should be handled with extreme care, beyond that accorded to other mineral acids, in part because of its low dissociation constant, which allows HF to penetrate tissue more quickly. Symptoms of exposure to hydrofluoric acid may not be immediately evident. HF interferes with nerve function and burns may not initially be painful. Accidental exposures can go unnoticed, delaying treatment and increasing the extent and seriousness of the injury. HF is known to etch bone, and since it penetrates the skin it can weaken bones without destroying the skin. More seriously, it can be absorbed into blood through skin and react with blood calcium, causing cardiac arrest.
notes
  • Joshua & the jars — causing confusion in the enemy army that caused them to self-destruct.
  • Tower of Babel
scripture
Deuteronomy 6:4-9
Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is one Lord; and you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your might. And these words which I command you this day shall be upon your heart; and you shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. And you shall bind them as a sign upon your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. And you shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.
Psalm 4:4
Be angry, but sin not;
commune with your own hearts on your beds, and be silent. [Selah]
Psalm 34:13
Keep your tongue from evil, and your lips from speaking deceit.
Psalm 37:30
The mouth of the righteous utters wisdom, and his tongue speaks justice.
Psalm 46:10a
Be still, and know that I am God.
Psalm 52
1-4
Why do you boast, O mighty man,
of mischief done against the godly?
All the day you are plotting destruction.
Your tongue is like a sharp razor,
you worker of treachery. You love evil more than good,
and lying more than speaking the truth. [Selah]
You love all words that devour,
O deceitful tongue.
Psalm 101:5
Him who slanders his neighbor secretly I will destroy. The man of haughty looks and arrogant heart I will not endure.
Proverbs 4:24
Put away from you crooked speech, and put devious talk far from you.
Proverbs 10:18
He who conceals hatred has lying lips, and he who utters slander is a fool.
Proverbs 11:13
He who goes about as a talebearer reveals secrets, but he who is trustworthy in spirit keeps a thing hidden.
Proverbs 12:13
An evil man is ensnared by the transgression of his lips, but the righteous escapes from trouble.
Proverbs 16:27-28
A worthless man plots evil, and his speech is like a scorching fire. A perverse man spreads strife, and a whisperer separates close friends.
Proverbs 17:9
He who forgives an offense seeks love, but he who repeats a matter alienates a friend.
Proverbs 18:8
The words of a whisperer are like delicious morsels; they go down into the inner parts of the body.
Proverbs 18:21
Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruits.
Proverbs 21:23
He who keeps his mouth and his tongue keeps himself out of trouble.
Proverbs 26:22
For lack of wood the fire goes out; and where there is no whisperer, quarreling ceases.
Ecclesiastes 5
1-2
Guard your steps when you go to the house of God; to draw near to listen is better than to offer the sacrifice of fools; for they do not know that they are doing evil. Be not rash with your mouth, nor let your heart be hasty to utter a word before God, for God is in heaven, and you upon earth; therefore let your words be few.
Ecclesiastes 7:9
Be not quick to anger,
for anger lodges in the bosom of fools.
Matthew 5:33-37
Again you have heard that it was said to the men of old, 'You shall not swear falsely, but shall perform to the Lord what you have sworn.' But I say to you, Do not swear at all, either by heaven, for it is the throne of God, or by the earth, for it is his footstool, or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the great King. And do not swear by your head, for you cannot make one hair white or black. Let what you say be simply 'Yes' or 'No'; anything more than this comes from evil.
Matthew 18
15
If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother.
Romans 1:29
They were filled with all manner of wickedness, evil, covetousness, malice. Full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, malignity, they are gossips, slanderers, haters of God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless. Though they know God’s decree that those who do such things deserve to die, they not only do them but approve those who practice them.
Romans 3:13
"Their throat is an open grave, they use their tongues to deceive." "The venom of asps is under their lips."
1 Corinthians 13:1
If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.
Ephesians 5:4
Let there be no filthiness, nor silly talk, nor levity, which are not fitting; but instead let there be thanksgiving.
James 3
2
For we all make many mistakes, and if any one makes no mistakes in what he says he is a perfect man, able to bridle the whole body also.
6-12
And the tongue is a fire. The tongue is an unrighteous world among our members, staining the whole body, setting on fire the cycle of nature, and set on fire by hell. For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and sea creature, can be tamed and has been tamed by humankind, but no human being can tame the tongue—a restless evil, full of deadly poison. With it we bless the Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who are made in the likeness of God. From the same mouth come blessing and cursing. My brethren, this ought not to be so. Does a spring pour forth from the same opening fresh water and brackish? Can a fig tree, my brethren, yield olives, or a grapevine figs? No more can salt water yield fresh.
James 4:11-12
Do not speak evil against one another, brethren. He that speaks evil against a brother or judges his brother, speaks evil against the law and judges the law. But if you judge the law, you are not a doer of the law but a judge. There is one lawgiver and judge, he who is able to save and to destroy. But who are you that you judge your neighbor?
1 John 3:18
Little children, let us not love in word or speech but in deed and in truth.