When Silence Helps
When Silence Helps By David Phillips
God teaches His people wisdom for when and how to speak. When something needs to be said, God teaches us the importance of saying it, but there are also times when the best thing we can say is nothing at all. The following are passages that describe situations in which it is good for a person to keep silent.
When tempted to make a promise (vow to do or give something) you cannot keep: Eccl. 5:5, 6 When you don’t know what you are talking about: 1 Tim. 1:7 When you haven’t given proper consideration to your words: Matt. 12:36 (Note: In this passage Jesus is responding to the Pharisees after they accused Him of casing out demons by Beelzebub. By this they were blaspheming the Holy Spirit by whom Jesus really cast out demons. They had not fully considered the ramifications of their words and Jesus here implies they would be judged for their thoughtless [idle] words).
- When receiving a command: Prov. 10:8
- When you don’t have anything important to say (avoid multiplying your words): Prov. 17:28
- When tempted to curse a leader of the people: Eccl. 10:20; Acts 23:5; Jude 8
- When tempted to speak evil of another person: Titus 3:2; James 4:11
- When angry (lest you say something rash): Prov. 29:11
- When it is not you turn or place to speak in the assembly of the saints (that all things may be done decently and in order): 1 Cor. 14:26-28, 34