Welcome to His Encouragement Thursday! I don’t know about you, but Thursdays are my struggle day of the week. By Thursday, I have already been working hard at school and at home, and I just wish it would hurry up and be Friday already. LOL! I definitely need a little extra Jesus time on Thursdays.
The one who guards his mouth protects his life; the one who opens his lips invites his own ruin.Proverbs 13:3 CSB
This verse struck me this week so I went on a translation journey. The quote above is from the Christian Standard Translation. The image is from the Bible App, and I’m not actually sure which translation it comes from. Then I read this from a Hebrew translation: “He who watches his mouth guards his soul; for one who opens his lips wide there is ruin” (Chabad.org).
What is interesting about the Hebrew translation is there is a note from Rashi on this verse. Rashi, if you don’t know, is a renowned French commentator on the Bible and Talmud. He was a Rabbi who lived from 1040 AD – 1105 AD. Anyway, this is what he says about verse 13: the phrase one who opens his lips wide means “opens his lips to speak constantly all his desire, from (Ezekiel 16:25): ‘And you spread wide your legs,’ an expression of wideness.”
Hmmm … perhaps a better way to understand Proverbs 13:3 is like this: He who thinks before he speaks and chooses carefully what to share out of his mouth is like one who guards/protects his life/soul, but he who vomits everything out of his mouth without thinking first is like a prostitute whose way leads to ruin. So, opening your mouth and speaking carelessly is a sure-fire path to destruction.
Proverbs 13:3 proves that God cares deeply about the things we say to ourselves and to others. Words really do matter. And, this reminds me of Matthew 15:18-20 (ESV) when Jesus says, “What comes out of the mouth proceeds from the heart, and this defiles a person. For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false witness, slander. These are what defile a person.”
According to Jesus, our words are an illustration of the type of heart we have. So, I’m going to leave you with this thought to ponder — what kind of heart do you have today? If you aren’t sure, think back on your latest conversations with others or think on the last internal monologue you had. Have your words lifted others up or brought them crashing down? The answer to this question will tell you what you need to know about your heart’s condition.