Words – Gospel in Life


Tim Keller |  May 15, 2005

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  • The Holy Spirit
  • The Bible
  • Christian Living and Obedience
Proverbs 10:18-19
RS 178-19


Of all the things the book of Proverbs says something about, speech is at the top of the list. It has so much to teach us about how to use our tongues and about language. In short, how you speak will make or break your life. Learning to speak wisely is all-important.

We’re going to look at several different proverbs that shed light on these topics for us. These three headings will guide us: the power of our words, the character of our words, and the healing of our words.

Understanding Proverbs

Proverbs teaches us the importance and impact of our words. It talks about how words can be powerful, can define who we are, and can even bring healing. It warns us about the dangers of hiding bad feelings, spreading lies, and speaking carelessly. It also highlights the wisdom in using words wisely to build good relationships and enhance our overall happiness.

1. The strength of our words

Words can have a huge impact, leading to terrible things like murder, suicide, and wars. They can also hurt us mentally, changing how we see ourselves and others. Lies can ruin relationships and communities. However, if we express our negative feelings honestly and talk about them, we can grow in understanding and perspective. The fact that we, as human beings created in the image of God, use words shows just how important they are.

2. The nature of our words

Speaking truthfully, kindly, and wisely is very important. Deceptive or harsh words can hurt others. When we communicate, we need to think about whether our words are truthful, kind, and clear, even when it’s difficult. Words are powerful, so we need to use them in a balanced way to make sure we’re understood and that we don’t hurt others.

3. The healing power of our words

Proverbs and also Matthew 12 talk about how our words are connected to what’s in our hearts. The heart, which represents our deepest hopes and desires, needs to change to improve the way we talk. This change is brought about by the Holy Spirit during Pentecost. The ultimate healing comes from Jesus Christ, whose sacrifice allows us to hear and believe that we are loved by God. This transforms our words into tools of truth, kindness, and beauty.



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