Psalm 12 - Tongue in Check

Help, LORD, for no one is faithful anymore;
those who are loyal have vanished from the human race.
Everyone lies to their neighbor;
they flatter with their lips
but harbor deception in their hearts.
May the LORD silence all flattering lips
and every boastful tongue—
those who say,
“By our tongues we will prevail;
our own lips will defend us—who is lord over us?”
“Because the poor are plundered and the needy groan,
I will now arise, ” says the LORD.
“I will protect them from those who malign them.”
And the words of the LORD are flawless,
like silver purified in a crucible,
like gold refined seven times.
You, LORD, will keep the needy safe
and will protect us forever from the wicked,
who freely strut about
when what is vile is honored by the human race.

How many people do you trust? If you said even one, you should consider yourself blessed because many have completely lost their faith in people. Betrayed, let down, deserted, and abandoned several times by several people, it has become hard to trust anybody. 

When people are with you, they flatter you but are deceitful. We are lied about. And we are lied to. We are hurt when people lie ABOUT us because it destroys reputations and relationships. When people lie TO us, we are hurt because nobody likes to be manipulated or taken advantage of. 

Who will protect us from such wickedness? There is only one answer: the Lord! He declares: “Because the needy groan, I arise.” Notice how immediately after this, we sing about how the Lord’s words are flawless because if there are any words we can trust and believe, they are the Lord’s. Therefore, when God assures us of his protection, vindication, peace, favor, and other things he promises us, we can rest assured that his words are true. He also promises us that he will punish the wicked.

However, we should also treat this promise as a warning to guard our tongues against wickedness. James writes: “The tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one’s life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell (James 3:5-6). Jesus says that we will be acquitted by our words, and by our words, we will be condemned (Matthew 12:37).

But let us take hope in the assurance that “anyone who is never at fault in what they say is perfect, able to keep their whole body in check” (James 3:2). That guarantees us a victor’s welcome in heaven.

God be with you.