Click this link to hear an audio version of the below text narrated by SOTH member Jerry Rhinehart:
Proverbs 12:15-28 (ESV)
15 The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, but a wise man listens to advice. 16 The vexation of a fool is known at once, but the prudent ignores an insult. 17 Whoever speaks the truth gives honest evidence, but a false witness utters deceit. 18 There is one whose rash words are like sword thrusts, but the tongue of the wise brings healing. 19 Truthful lips endure forever, but a lying tongue is but for a moment. 20 Deceit is in the heart of those who devise evil, but those who plan peace have joy. 21 No ill befalls the righteous, but the wicked are filled with trouble. 22 Lying lips are an abomination to the Lord, but those who act faithfully are his delight. 23 A prudent man conceals knowledge, but the heart of fools proclaims folly. 24 The hand of the diligent will rule, while the slothful will be put to forced labor. 25 Anxiety in a man’s heart weighs him down, but a good word makes him glad. 26 One who is righteous is a guide to his neighbor, but the way of the wicked leads them astray. 27 Whoever is slothful will not roast his game, but the diligent man will get precious wealth. 28 In the path of righteousness is life, and in its pathway there is no death.
We have already had several proverbs about wise speech. Today we hear some very helpful ones on this subject, emphasizing prudence. Prudence is the virtue of holding back and waiting for the right time and place to speak or act. Verse 12:16 about ignoring insults and 12:18 on rash words are teachings we can use nearly every day. 12:23 is interesting, saying that there are things we know that we should sometimes keep to ourselves. 12:25 warns us against being anxious. Jesus expanded on this in Matthew 6:25-33. I’ll be doing a whole sermon about anxiety and other emotions in Proverbs in July.