August 26 –Quelling the Busy Tongue

“Like a madman who throws firebrands, arrows and death, so is the man who deceives his neighbor, and says, “Was I not joking?” For lack of wood the fire goes out, and where there is no whisperer, contention quiets down.” – Proverbs 26:18-20 (NASB)

Perhaps we can recognize in today’s proverb verses the effect of the anonymity that social media provides. It is too easy for one to be reckless with our words and when challenged claim “this is sarcasm.” The wild and reckless archer is referred to first in verse 10 and is a picture a troublemaker. After deceiving his neighbor he tries to duck responsibility when accused by saying “I was only joking.” But that is humor in bad taste. Deceptive words and harsh conversation, like deadly arrows, the damage to another’s reputation has already been done and rarely can be recovered. Our promise is a warning against the damage course jesting or speaking in sarcastic or disingenuous form. Rather we are encouraged to act wisely and to not add any fuel to a simmering temper and so let hard feeling calm down. Even more, keep it close to our chests and not give it the wings of gossip by whispering it in hushed tones. The better way to respond is to not employ a busy tongue which makes trouble where it does not find any.


April 25 – Avoid Deception

“Little children, make sure no one deceives you; the one who practices righteousness is righteous, just as He is righteous; the one who practices sin is of the devil; for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The Son of God appeared for this purpose, to destroy the works of the devil.” – 1 John 3:7-8 (NASB)

Recalling the promise from yesterday’s verse helps us understand today’s verse and why we are instructed to submit and resist. It is a persistent goal of the devil to deceive, especially those who are in Christ. If we don’t submit to God and if we don’t resist the devil we are actually practicing the devil’s ways. There are no multiple ways to multiple gods. Only one God and only one way to Him. We are instructed to practice righteousness as Christ, who is righteous, dwells within each true believer. If we fall for the deception of Satan and give in to the temptations he presents then our way of our life is the practice of sin. Christ has chosen us⸺he has provided the gifts of faith, and grace, for salvation⸺we should believe in the purpose Christ came to earth. He came to destroy the effects of the devil’s work. In His death on the cross, Christ struck the decisive blow to destroy the works of Satan. Christ’s resurrection from the dead secured for us the victory. One day, Satan’s time of conditional limited freedom will be over – that is a promise. (Revelation 20:10)