20 Bible Verses About the Tongue

20 Bible Verses About the Tongue

Struggling with controlling what you say? The Bible tells us that the tongue holds the power of life and death. This blog will guide you through essential Bible verses about the tongue, helping you to speak wisely and avoid harmful words.

Let’s explore this important topic together. Keep reading!

Power of the Tongue

An oil painting of a mouth speaking, with a visible tongue, symbolizing the power of speech to bring life or death.

The tongue has the power to bring life or deathProverbs 18:21 tells us that those who love it will eat its fruit. Words can bless and lift others up, or they can hurt and tear down.

James 3:5-6 compares the tongue to a small fire that can set a forest ablaze, calling it a “world of unrighteousness”. It might be small, but it holds immense influence.

James also says in verse 8 that no human being can tame the tongue. It’s described as “a restless evil, full of deadly poison”. Harsh words cut like swords (Proverbs 12:18), while kind words bring healing.

Our speech reflects our heart and directs our path just like a bit controls a horse or rudder steers a ship.

Proverbs 18:21

"The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit."

Proverbs 18:21 tells us, “Death and life are in the power of the tongue.” This means our words can hurt or heal. We choose how to use this power each day. If we speak kindly, we spread joy and peace like a tree of life.

Harsh words, though—like rash words or gossip—can bring pain and trouble.

People who love to talk will face good or bad results from their speech. Wise words can build up friendships and encourage others. But careless word lies can lead to anger and sadness.

The Bible teaches us to be careful with what we say because it affects not only others but also our own lives deeply.

James 3:5-6

"Likewise, 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."

A small flame can start a huge fire… James 3:5-6 says the tongue is like that. It’s tiny but can do big things, good or bad. The tongue makes great boasts—just like a spark ignites a forest blaze.

James compares the tongue to fire and calls it a world of unrighteousness. This little part of our body, if not controlled, can defile everything else. The tongue holds extraordinary power; it can bless and curse, bring joy or sorrow.

It has the might to cause great destruction among us all by spreading lies and wrathful words.

James 3:8

"But no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison."

James 3:8 tells us that no one can control the tongue. It says the tongue is a restless evil, full of deadly poison. This shows how hard it is to manage what we say and the harm our words can cause.

The verse compares the tongue to a wild animal that cannot be tamed. It highlights the need for self-control in speech. The inability to tame the tongue challenges everyone, stressing why it’s crucial to guard our words closely.

Proverbs 12:18

"The words of the reckless pierce like swords, but the tongue of the wise brings healing."

Proverbs 12:18 teaches us about the power of words. It says speaking rashly is like thrusts of a sword, and it can hurt deeply. But wise words bring healing and peace.

The verse highlights that our tongues can cause harm or promote health. Using gentle and gracious words can help people feel better, while harsh speech causes pain. This shows why it’s important to think carefully before we speak.

Controlling the Tongue

An oil painting of someone shushing with an index finger covering the mouth, symbolizing the importance of guarding one's mouth and controlling the tongue.

James 1:26 warns that anyone who thinks they are religious but does not control their tongue is deceiving themselves. Their religion is worthless. Proverbs 13:3 teaches that those who guard their mouth protect their life, whereas those who speak rashly will come to ruin.

Psalm 34:13 advises us—keep your tongue from evil and your lips from telling lies.

Proverbs 21:23 says guarding your mouth can keep you out of trouble. With the help of the Holy Spirit, one can gain power over a perverse tongue. Speak less and think more before you talk; this helps in taming the tongue and avoiding unwholesome talk or gossip.

James 1:26

"Those who consider themselves religious and yet do not keep a tight rein on their tongues deceive themselves, and their religion is worthless."

James 1:26 warns about controlling your tongue. If you don’t, you’re fooling yourself and your religion means nothing.

The verse shows how important it is to watch what you say. True faith isn’t just about belief; it’s also about actions, like speaking kindly. The Bible often talks about the power of words, showing why controlling the tongue matters for living a good life.

Proverbs 13:3

"Those who guard their lips preserve their lives, but those who speak rashly will come to ruin."

Proverbs 13:3 tells us, “Those who guard their mouths preserve their lives; those who speak rashly come to ruin.” People must control what they say. A careless tongue can provoke anger and cause harm.

Our words have power.

gentle tongue helps avoid conflict. Guarding our mouth shows wisdom and self-control. This verse teaches us the importance of thinking before speaking. Wise speech protects us from trouble and leads to a peaceful life in the eyes of our Lord.

Proverbs 21:23

"Those who guard their mouths and their tongues keep themselves from calamity."

Guard your words, and you can avoid trouble. Proverbs 21:23 emphasizes this wisdom. If you watch your mouth, you’ll keep away from calamity.

A lying tongue or harsh speech often brings chaos. By controlling what we say, we steer clear of unnecessary fights and problems. This guidance helps us find peace in our lives.

Psalm 34:13

"Keep your tongue from evil and your lips from telling lies."

Psalm 34:13 tells us to keep our tongue from evil and our lips from speaking lies. This verse shows the importance of controlling what we say. The words we choose can hurt or heal, bring life or death.

The Bible says in Proverbs 18:21 that the power of life and death is in the tongue. Psalm 34:13 reminds believers to guard their speech closely. Always strive for truthavoiding deceitful words—this guides our way to blessings rather than curses.

Righteous Speech

An oil painting of two women standing and talking sincerely with each other, embodying the concept of righteous speech with kind words and grace.

Use kind words. Build others up with your speech. Ephesians 4:29 says, “Don’t let any corrupting talk come out of your mouths.” Speak only what is good for building others up. This helps those who listen.

Colossians 4:6 guides us to make our conversation full of grace, seasoned with salt. If we follow this advice, our words can bring peace and understanding. Proverbs 15:1 reminds us that a soft answer turns away wrath but harsh words stir anger.

The tongue of the righteous is like choice silver… valuable and wise (Proverbs 10:20). Words from a righteous person nourish many (Proverbs 10:21). Let’s use our tongues wisely for good deeds and blessings, avoiding harmful talk.

Ephesians 4:29

"Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen."

Ephesians 4:29 tells us to watch our words. Speak in ways that help and build people up. Avoid negative or corrupt speech.

Words hold power, bringing blessings or curses. Being mindful of your tongue can bring healing and wisdom. This verse reminds us to think before we speak, aiming for kind and positive interactions with others.

Colossians 4:6

"Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone."

Colossians 4:6 urges believers to speak with grace. Words should be seasoned with salt, reflecting kindness and wisdom. Speaking in this way aligns our speech with the teachings of Jesus Christ.

Gracious words help spread love and truth about the Lord. They avoid hatred, folly, or sin. This verse is a reminder to let every word uplift others and reflect God’s graciousness in our daily lives.

Proverbs 15:1

"A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger."

A soft answer turns anger away. Proverbs 15:1 says gentle words can calm a storm. Harsh words, though, stir up more trouble. This verse shows the power of kind speech.

Words can heal or hurtGood and gentle words bring peace. This makes it clear that how we speak matters a lot in our lives with others.

Proverbs 10:11

"The mouth of the righteous is a fountain of life, but the mouth of the wicked conceals violence."

Proverbs 10:11 talks about the power of speech. It says, “The mouth of the righteous is a fountain of life, but the mouth of the wicked conceals violence.” This verse shows how important words are.

Righteous people speak good things; they bring life and joy to others. Their speech heals and helps those around them.

In contrast, wicked people often hide harmful intentions behind their words. They may lie or spread gossip, causing pain and trouble for others. The tongue can be used for blessing or cursing—choose wisely what you say because it can build up or destroy lives around you.

Guarding Against Gossip and Lies

An oil painting of a woman whispering into another woman's ear, symbolizing the harm caused by gossip.

Gossip breaks trust and causes harm. Proverbs 16:28 says a gossip separates friends. Also, lies hurt relationships. Proverbs 11:13 warns that a trustworthy person keeps secrets but a gossip spreads them.

Speaking the truth keeps peace and avoids God’s judgment. Exodus 20:16 commands not to give false testimony against others. Set a guard over your mouth, as Psalm 141:3 suggests, so you don’t spread lies or hurtful words.

Proverbs 16:28

"A perverse person stirs up conflict, and a gossip separates close friends."

troublemaker spreads conflict and whispers lies. This Bible verse contrasts evil men with the good ones. It states that gossip stirs up fights, breaking close friendships apart. Evil speech is described as wicked and damaging.

Those who are honest and disciplined stay away from such behavior. Righteous people use their tongues for peace and truth, not for causing harm or spreading falsehoods. Psalm 141:3 asks God to guard our words, so we don’t fall into this trap of wicked speech.

Proverbs 11:13

"A gossip betrays a confidence, but a trustworthy person keeps a secret."

Proverbs 11:13 speaks against gossip. It says, “A gossip betrays a confidence, but a trustworthy person keeps a secret.” Gossip can break trust and hurt others. Valuable friendships often rely on trust.

Gossip is like spreading false witness, which Exodus 20:16 warns against. A true friend or follower of Christ Jesus avoids such talk. They protect other’s secrets and speak with care…

valuing the fruit of the spirit like kindness and patience.

Exodus 20:16

"You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor."

Exodus 20:16 is the Ninth Commandment. It says, “You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.” This rule means no lying about others. Lies can damage and hurt people deeply.

The commandment highlights the importance of truth. Speaking falsehoods can destroy trust and relationshipsGod values honesty; He wants us to be truthful always…speaking only what is right and good.

Psalm 141:3

"Set a guard over my mouth, Lord; keep watch over the door of my lips."

Psalm 141:3 asks God to set a guard over our mouths and watch over the door of our lips. This verse highlights the need for careful speech, especially in challenging situations. It encourages us to speak life and choose good words.

Hurtful words can cause damage. Psalm 141:3 reminds us about self-discipline in what we say. Controlling the tongue is essential, even more so when surrounded by wickedness… Just like Proverbs warns about blessing and cursing, this plea for help from God is crucial to avoid sin with our words.

Speaking Truth and Wisdom

An oil painting of a person preaching in front of a crowd, embodying the concept of speaking truth and wisdom.

wise tongue speaks truth and justice. Proverbs 25:11 says, “A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver.” This means the right words at the right time are valuable.

Wisdom can change lives and bring peace.

Matthew 12:36-37 warns that people will be judged for every word they say. Speaking truth shows respect for others and honors God. It helps grow trust and keeps relationships strong.

gentle tongue is a tree of life, giving wisdom that fits each situation perfectly—bringing light to dark times with kind words.

Proverbs 25:11

"Like apples of gold in settings of silver is a ruling rightly given."

Proverbs 25:11 says, “A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in a setting of silver.” A well-chosen word can communicate support, agreement, or encouragement. The right words at the right time comfort and guide others.

Using gentle speech brings joy to both speaker and listener. It highlights how powerful the tongue can be—our words matter immensely. Speaking wisely builds up those around us like beautiful art—a golden apple in a silver basket.

Proverbs 10:31

"From the mouth of the righteous comes the fruit of wisdom, but a perverse tongue will be silenced."

The mouth of the righteous brings forth wisdom. The verse emphasizes the power of wise words. A person who speaks good things offers valuable advice and knowledge. But those who use their tongues for evil will face harsh consequences.

This shows a clear contrast between speaking wisely and using words to harm others. Proverbs 10:31 underscores how important it is to think before we speak. Speaking with kindness and truth can lead to positive outcomes, while harmful speech leads to ruin

showing that our words hold great power!

Psalm 19:14

"May these words of my mouth and this meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer."

Psalm 19:14 talks about the words of our mouth and thoughts of our heart. It is a prayer asking for these to be pleasing to God, who is called the Rock and Redeemer. This verse stresses having pure hearts since the Lord may not listen if we cherish wrongdoings in our hearts.

Our words should show love rather than pride or anger. By doing so, we can honor God with both our speech and thoughts. This aligns with teachings about eternal life from salvation found in other parts of the Bible like John 3:16.

Matthew 12:36-37

"But I tell you that everyone will have to give account on the day of judgment for every empty word they have spoken. For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned."

Jesus speaks about words. He says that people will answer for every word they say. Careless words matter too.

He warns that we can be judged by our own words. Words can either save us or condemn us.

What Does the Bible Say About the Tongue?

The Bible teaches that the tongue has incredible power. Proverbs 18:21 says, “Death and life are in the power of the tongue.” This means our words can bring blessings or curses. James 3:5-6 compares the tongue to a small spark that can set a great forest on fire, showing its potential for harm.

Guarding our tongues is vital. Psalm 34:13 urges us to keep our tongues from evil and lips from telling lies. According to Proverbs 21:23, those who guard their mouth and tongue stay out of trouble.

Speaking wisely has an important role in glorifying God—use your speech to encourage others and share good news.


The Bible speaks a lot about the tongue. It teaches us to use kind words and avoid gossip. Harsh words can hurt, but gentle words heal. We should always speak wisely and truthfully.

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