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Proverbs 12:14-21 (NIV)
14 From the fruit of their lips people are filled with good things, and the work of their hands brings them reward. 15 The way of fools seems right to them, but the wise listen to advice. 16 Fools show their annoyance at once, but the prudent overlook an insult. 17 An honest witness tells the truth, but a false witness tells lies. 18 The words of the reckless pierce like swords, but the tongue of the wise brings healing. 19 Truthful lips endure forever, but a lying tongue lasts only a moment. 20 Deceit is in the hearts of those who plot evil, but those who promote peace have joy. 21 No harm overtakes the righteous, but the wicked have their fill of trouble.
In verse 18 healing is associated with wise words. But the “words of the reckless pierce like swords”. In other words, our thoughtless, careless, ill-advised words can open wounds in others that cause real pain and severe damage, especially to our relationships. We see this play out daily on social media. Someone makes a political post on Facebook and others respond, almost always in a reckless manner. Sometimes we even justify our reckless words by thinking that we are on God’s side of an issue. But we forget that God almost always cares about how we relate to one another, not whether we win an argument. Wise, healing words start at the cross where we see God “winning” the argument by speaking mercy and forgiveness and showing us love.