For out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks. The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in him. But I tell you that men will have to give account on the day of judgment for every careless word they have spoken. For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned.” – Matthew 12: 34-37
The new Scripture verse that we started yesterday is Matthew 12:34-37, quoted above. You know how I said I was going to try to show the kids, this year, that the Bible has lots of positive things to say and wasn’t just Mom’s way of heaping on the guilt for their behavior? Yeah, well, I didn’t say that I was only going to show them that the Bible has lots of positive things to say.
I guess, if there is good coming out of your mouth, this is a positive verse. However, God knew what we were going to be facing this year when I sat, over the summer, writing out Scripture verses for us to memorize this year. So, it was no surprise to Him that I would need this one this week when there’s been a lot of “evil” coming out of my kids’ mouths.
He knew that I would need to show them where His Word tells them that one day they’re going to have to give account for every careless word that they have spoken. He’s probably as tired of all the name-calling and meanness as I am…and, no, I’m not being facetious there. I think He gets as angry as I do to hear His children being ugly to each other.
This verse is also a good reminder for me. Kids aren’t the only ones who speak careless words and the thing about words is, once they’re out there, they can’t be taken back. It doesn’t matter how sorry you feel for having said them or how far they may have been from how you truly feel. They’re out there and they can come back to haunt for the rest of your life, whether you were the one speaking them or the one to whom they were being spoken.
Strangely enough, God knew what He was talking about when He said,
“The tongue has the power of life and death.” (Proverbs 18:21)
Considering how much the Bible has to say about our words and their power, it’s funny how careless we can be with them. I know that we’ve all spoken words in haste that we wish we could take back.
Do you see a man who speaks in haste? There is more hope for a fool than for him. – Proverbs 29:20
It is my prayer that God will write Matthew 12:34-37 on my family’s hearts so that we can remember, in times of anger, frustration or hurt, that one day we will stand before God and be asked to give an account for the words that we’ve spoken and, knowing that, we’ll refrain from saying those that might condemn, rather than acquit us.