Today’s Scripture: A man that beareth false witness against his neighbor is a maul, and a sword, and a sharp arrow. Proverbs¬†25:18

The tongue… such a small piece of flesh in our mouth yet it can cause so much damage. The Bible gives many warnings about the tongue, probably the most famous of which is in James chapter 3. James says no man can tame the tongue – it is an unruly evil, full of poison, and set on fire of Hell.

We have the ability to use our words for good or for evil, yet many times we use our tongues to hurt people. The saying, “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me,” is entirely false. People are hurt by words all the time. Relationships may be broken, jobs or promotions may be lost, innocent people sent to jail, etc. Words have a great effect on people, and we just throw them around without thinking sometimes.

Many times, the whole purpose of our words is to hurt others. Why do people get enjoyment out of gossip? Is there anything good that can come out of it? Many people will justify a lie, but really it is because they benefit from it. What do we gain out of telling ill of others? We try to make ourselves look better by bringing others down. However, God tells us that we should be edifying or building each other up.

Today’s verse talks about bearing false witness against someone. When we tell lies, partial truths, or lead others into thinking wrongly about someone, the Bible calls us several types of deadly weapons. First, God calls us a maul. A maul is a large, heavy hammer or blunt object used to beat. First, our words cause massive blunt-force trauma and internal damage to the person about whom we are speaking. Secondly, God calls us a sword. A sword causes much more visible injuries, and more likely to cause more blood to be shed. The third weapon God compares us to is a sharp arrow which pierces all the way to the heart. Any one of these weapons can cause incredible damage, but all three are sure to cause utter destruction.

Let’s make sure we are using our words to help others, not to bring pain and destruction to their lives. Think of a way you could encourage someone today.

Devotional by Pastor Jim Scudder, Jr.