Hebrew Highlights 90 SPEECH
Shalom, this is Yuval Shomron, coming to you from Jerusalem.
ECC 5:6 “Do not let your speech cause you to sin and do not say in the presence of the messenger of God that it was a mistake. Why should God be angry on account of your voice and destroy the work of your hands?”
How often have we spoken angry, fearful, or complaining words, and then said, “Oops! I made a mistake.” There is of course no doubt that God and His angels hear us. Not only that, but God sees into our hearts at the time of our speech.
The Hebrew word used in Ecclesiastes for mistake is “Shgia”. There is another Hebrew word, “Ta’ut”, which is more like a “boo-boo”, or an accidental blunder. However, “shgia” is used more in the sense of a calculated mistake. For instance, if a child makes an error on a Math exam, it is called a “shgia”; a mistake made after thinking in error.
Sometimes after being angry, we may say something like, “I’m so sorry. I don’t know what happened. I just blurted it out.” Unfortunately, our mouth does not work independently of our soul and spirit. If we said it, there was some error in our heart behind the statement. In the Bible, there are numerous stories of people getting in trouble because of their mouths. Take for instance, EXO 14:10-14.
“And as Pharaoh drew near, the sons of Israel looked, and behold, the Egyptians were marching after them, and they became very frightened; so the sons of Israel cried out to the Lord. Then they said to Moses, "Is it because there were no graves in Egypt that you have taken us away to die in the wilderness? Why have you dealt with us in this way, bringing us out of Egypt? "Is this not the word that we spoke to you in Egypt, saying, 'Leave us alone that we may serve the Egyptians'? For it would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the wilderness." But Moses said to the people, "Do not fear! Stand by and see the salvation of the Lord which He will accomplish for you today; for the Egyptians whom you have seen today, you will never see them again forever. "The Lord will fight for you while you keep silent."
In Hebrew, the last sentence is, “Adonai yilachem lachem, ve’atem tacharishun.” You could actually translate it as, “The Lord will fight for you, and you will shut up!” When will we learn that God will take care of the matters of revenge, battle, and justification. Our words are not only powerless, but usually untimely and hurtful, only making the situation worse.
Let’s look at another story, in NUM 13:30-33, “Then Caleb quieted the people before Moses, and said, "We should by all means go up and take possession of it, for we shall surely overcome it." But the men who had gone up with him said, "We are not able to go up against the people, for they are too strong for us." So they gave out to the sons of Israel a bad report of the land which they had spied out, saying, "The land through which we have gone, in spying it out, is a land that devours its inhabitants; and all the people whom we saw in it are men of great size. "There also we saw the Nephilim (the sons of Anak are part of the Nephilim); and we became like grasshoppers in our own sight, and so we were in their sight."
The names “Nephilim” and “Anak” are two words for giants. Notice that the 10 spies who gave the bad report said first that, “we became like grasshoppers in our own sight” and then continued, “and so we were in their sight." Because of this speech, Israel spent 40 years in the Wilderness. What would have happened if the scouts had seen themselves as elephants, or eagles, or lions? Maybe the outcome would have been different. Once again, their speech was governed by a fear in their hearts.
Yeshua spoke of this principal in MAT 12:34, "You brood of vipers, how can you, being evil, speak what is good? For the mouth speaks out of that which fills the heart.”
We might learn a lesson from this verse. It is pretty useless trying to fix our speech by taking courses in positive confessions. If we want to improve our communication skills, we should start by working on our heart. Yeshua said in LUK 8:15, "And the seed in the good soil, these are the ones who have heard the word in an honest and good heart, and hold it fast, and bear fruit with perseverance.”
Did you ever, as a kid, look into a mirror, and wonder how far your tongue goes down? Well, evidently, at least in a spiritual sense, goes all the way down to our heart. If, in that most holy place, we hold on to God’s words, a fountain a life will flow from our mouths. Instead of doubt, complaint, and destruction, we will speak forth faith, praise, and creativity.
As goes a famous Jewish blessing, “From your mouth, to God’s ears!”
Shalom, Shalom from Jerusalem.