Hurling Angry Words

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A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger.

The tongue of the wise useth knowledge aright: but the mouth of fools poureth out foolishness.

The eyes of the Lord are in every place, beholding the evil and the good.

A wholesome tongue is a tree of life: but perverseness therein is a breach in the spirit.

Luke 6:45 “A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is evil: for of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaketh.”

Since 1968, the characters in the comic strip The Lockhorns have been exchanging barbs of bitter wit and marital contempt. Currently syndicated in more than 500 newspapers, the carton entertains millions of readers as Leroy says things like this to Loretta: “Sure we can talk now. Just don’t stand in front of the television.” Loretta at no loss of words or jabs, is as just likely to say something like, “Sure I spend more than you make. I have confidence in you.”

While laughing, we might catch a glimpse of ourselves. Sarcasm is all too common, and far more serious than we might want to believe. Heartless sarcasm can be more harmful than physical bruises. Solomon said there are people who use words like a sword (Proverbs 12:18 “There is that speaketh like the piercings of a sword: but the tongue of the wise is health.”), and evel words can crush the spirit (Proverbs 15:4 “A wholesome tongue is a tree of life: but perverseness therein is a breach in the spirit.”)

Controlling our speech isn’t easy, because the real problem is not our words but our hearts. Behind the insulkts, we are likely to find in ourselves an insecurity, fear, or guilt that tempts us to protect ourselves at the expense of another.

Is there an upside to abusive words? No, unless we take them as a warning that we’re not in step with Christ. In His embrace and grace, let’s not lash out at one another in an effort to protect ourselves. –Mart De Haan

Instead of hurling angry words
That wound and stir up strife,
Use words of kindness, filled with love,
That heal and nourish life. –Sper

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Abusive language reveals a sinful heart.

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