Today’s verse is about the trouble we can get into through the things that we say…
Proverbs 12: 13 (NKJV)
13 The wicked is ensnared by the transgression of his lips,
But the righteous will come through trouble.
First, let's check our definitions...
wicked: 1. Evil by nature and in practice 2. Highly offensive; obnoxious
ensnared: to trap or gain power over someone by dishonest or underhand means
transgression: 1. A violation of a law, command, or duty 2. The exceeding of due bounds or limits.
lips: Insolent talk; To utter
righteous: Morally upright; without guilt or sin
through: 1. In one side and out the opposite or another side of 2. At or to the end of; done or finished with, especially successfully
trouble: 1. A state of distress, affliction, difficulty, or need 2. A distressing or difficult circumstance or situation 3. A condition of pain, disease, or malfunction
As we can see, evil, obnoxious people can become trapped by speaking about violating the laws or duties that have been given to them. Morally upright men, on the other hand will make it out of their problems because they will be guided and blessed by God.
Job 15:5 (NKJV) says: Your sin prompts your mouth; you adopt the tongue of the crafty, and Jesus said, in Mark 7: 18 (NKJV) “But those things which proceed out of the mouth come from the heart…”
The book of James also teaches about our speech…
James 3: 5 – 10 (NKJV)
5 Even so the tongue is a little member and boasts great things. See how great a forest a little fire kindles! 6 And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity. The tongue is so set among our members that it defiles the whole body, and sets on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire by hell. 7 For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and creature of the sea, is tamed and has been tamed by mankind. 8 But no man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. 9 With it we bless our God and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the similitude of God. 10 Out of the same mouth proceed blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be so.
And finally, the Amplified Bible brings us a clear picture of what God would have our speech be:
Ephesians 4:29-32 (Amplified Bible)
29 Let no foul or polluting language, nor evil word nor unwholesome or worthless talk [ever] come out of your mouth, but only such [speech] as is good and beneficial to the spiritual progress of others, as is fitting to the need and the occasion, that it may be a blessing and give grace (God's favor) to those who hear it.
30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God [do not offend or vex or sadden Him], by Whom you were sealed (marked, branded as God's own, secured) for the day of redemption (of final deliverance through Christ from evil and the consequences of sin).
31 Let all bitterness and indignation and wrath (passion, rage, bad temper) and resentment (anger, animosity) and quarreling (brawling, clamor, contention) and slander (evil-speaking, abusive or blasphemous language) be banished from you, with all malice (spite, ill will, or baseness of any kind).
32 And become useful and helpful and kind to one another, tenderhearted (compassionate, understanding, loving-hearted), forgiving one another [readily and freely], as God in Christ forgave you.