“My lips will not speak wickedness, Nor my tongue utter deceit.”
Most of us understand there is certain speech that is ungodly, and therefore unacceptable. We realize gossip, backbiting, coarse jesting and profanity should never proceed from the mouth of a follower of Christ. Yet, we also realize that at times we are all guilty of this, in one way or another. When we do fail, we usually have an excuse for it. We used profanity because the situation called for it, or our emotions got the best of us. We talk about a person behind their back because we feel the need to “get it off our chest”, or vent our frustrations. I think we might be able to learn a little something from Job.
Job was suffering great physical and emotion pain. His situation was aggravated by his friends trumping up charges against him and maligning his character. Certainly, if anyone had a justification to utter words of wickedness, it was Job. Yet, he states, he refused to use his tongue in an ungodly fashion. James wrote, the tongue is like a wild animal that cannot be tamed. He explained that we are all guilty of using the tongue to bless God and curse men. James wasn’t excusing this behavior, but was pointing out the reality of the struggle. If we are going to win the battle of the mouth, we must determine beforehand that certain speech is unacceptable, and will not pass from our lips.
If you have a tendency to speak harshly of others, allow me to suggest that a cure for that is to pray for them, instead of venting about them. Take what bothers you about another to the Lord, instead of spilling it out on those around you.