… They make their tongues as sharp as a serpent’s
The poison of vipers is on their lips. … (Psalm 140:3)
… Their throats are open graves
Their tongues practice deceit.
The poison of vipers is on their lips. … (Romans 3:13)
… but no man can tame the tongue.
It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison. (James 3:7)
“They’d cut off their nose to spite their face!” This was the warning my dear-heart Mum would give me to be careful about dealing with certain people. She was a very keen observer of people and always knew, whether by word or deed, who the ‘poisonous’ were.
Today, we would call those who use words as weapons, poisonous (i.e., gossip, or the use of words to subdue or assert one’s self over another as more knowledgeable or right to the point of belittling or stabbing that person in the heart); and those who use deeds (or the lack of a right action) as weapons, vindictive.
Perhaps, more shameful is when another person is used, unknowingly, to transmit the depths and lengths of a person’s vindictiveness, so that their hands may be seen as ‘clean’ and their poisonous mouths can claim not to have had a part in what has torn your heart asunder.
Take heart, all you wounded! God, your champion, sees and knows the depths of each person’s heart and “secures justice for the poor and upholds the cause of the needy” (Psalm 140:12).
The Lord is coming!