Bible Reading: Provebrs 18.6-9
A fool’s lips bring strife, And his mouth calls for blows. 7 A fool’s mouth is his ruin, And his lips are the snare of his soul. 8 The words of a whisperer are like dainty morsels, And they go down into the innermost parts of the body. 9 He also who is slack in his work Is brother to him who destroys.
You can tell a lot today by one’s words and work ethic. Our words and work ethic can show whether we are wise or foolish. Solomon hits on that in today’s reading.
A fool is one who with his words brings trouble that is literally a cause for punishment or a beating. This could be applied to a parent and child relationship or even to the law or even to a setting where one says some hateful things that leads to another wanting to knock the block off another. What a fool says ruins him and it shows his true colors (ie, his lack of wisdom). It destroys his life.
The fool also feeds on gossip. His words bring trouble and he has an appetite for the latest scoop or dirt on others. He literally swallows greedily the tales about others and he believes it. Words are powerful. What we say and what we hear can affect our souls and ruin us.
A fool also is a slacker. He is not willing to do work or chores. This is wasteful living and ultimately leads to a life of destruction for many different reasons. Work is part of God’s creative plan for us. We see in Genesis 1 that God worked in creating the earth and all that is in it. He looked at the work He did and was excited about the work He had done and voiced, “it is good”. He has created us in His image to be workers. We were created to work and to be excited about our work just as God was. Such a view about work is wise and should produce in us a good work habit unlike the foolish man that is lazy in his work.
Guard your mouth from “unwholesome words” and as Paul says, may words that proceed from your mouth be a word that is good for edification according to the need of the moment, so that it will give grace to those who hear” (Ephesians 4.29). Guard your ears and “do not associate with a gossip (Proverbs 20.19). Guard your hands that you would “labor performing with your hands what is good, so that you will have something to share with one who has need” (Ephesians 4.28). This is wise and ultimately in living like this you guard your heart and soul.
Memory Verse: A man of too many friends comes to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother. Proverbs 18.24