“A brother offended is harder to be won than a strong city: and their contentions are like the bars of a castle. … Death and life are in the power of the tongue…”
Proverbs 12:18 (ESV):
“There is one whose rash words are like sword thrusts, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.”
Controlling our tongue or speech is one of the most important challenges for disciples of Jesus (Y’shua) to take on and accomplish. It is the first and most important step to controlling your mind, your heart, and your body. Because it takes so much discipline to do, once you have done well at this the rest follows more easily. James calls it the bit or bridle that steers and control where the horse goes. So, our speech will tend to control us. Now you can see how important it is to control the tongue always keeping it under God’s control.
There is power in the tongue, a power of life and death, of faith in action, of miracles and prophesy, a power of creation, a power of God’s authority on Earth. In order to be trusted by God to minister to others he must know that you will act accordingly as an extension of himself, that includes not speaking death or ill to people but speaking only his word which brings life.
Here are some Bible verses that make these points clear:
James 3:2-4: “For we all stumble in many ways. And if anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect man, able also to bridle his whole body. (3) If we put bits into the mouths of horses so that they obey us, we guide their whole bodies as well. (4) Look at the ships also: though they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are guided by a very small rudder wherever the will of the pilot directs.”
Proverbs 25:28 (ESV): “A man without self-control is like a city broken into and left without walls.”
Proverbs 21:23: “Whoso keeps his mouth and his tongue keeps his soul from troubles.”
Proverbs 15:28 (ESV): “The heart of the righteous ponders how to answer, but the mouth of the wicked pours out evil things.”
Proverbs 18:21: “Death and life are in the power of the tongue…”
Proverbs 12:18 (ESV): “… the tongue of the wise brings healing.”
Proverbs 15:4: “A wholesome tongue is a tree of life …”
James 1:19-20: “…let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God.”
In Matthew 12:34-37, Jesus (Y’shua) teaches: “… for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. (35) A good man out of the good treasure of the heart brings forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth evil things. (36) But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. (37) For by your words you shall be justified, and by your words you shall be condemned.”
Matthew 15:15-20 (ESV): “But Peter said to him (Jesus/Y’shua), ‘Explain the parable to us.’ And he said, ‘Are you also still without understanding? Do you not see that whatever goes into the mouth passes into the stomach and is expelled? But what comes out of the mouth proceeds from the heart, and this defiles a person. For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false witness, slander. These are what defile a person. But to eat with unwashed hands does not defile anyone.’”