Get The Facts Together Before Giving An Answer
In proverbs 15:28 the Bible tells us; “The heart of the righteous studies how to answer; but the mouth of the wicked pours forth evil period.”
Proverbs 16:1 echoes,”The preparations of the heart belong to man, but the answer of the tongue, is from the Lord. ” It is easy to give an emotional response to verbal abuse. In fact, human nature always seeks to give such a response. As someone said, “Make sure brain engaged before putting mouth into gear.”
Always Consider the Source
There are times when you do not need to answer. If the person to whom you are speaking is a fool, God tells us not to speak to him. He will hate you even more. Offensive persons and wicked men speak forward things.
Proverbs 23: 9, “Do not speak in the hearing of a fool for he will despise the wisdom of your words.” Hypocrites say things to destroy people.
Proverbs 11:9, “The hypocrite with his mouth destroys his neighbor.”
Proverbs 12:6, “Righteous people speak right things.”
Proverbs 10: 20. “Righteous people know the acceptable thing to say.”
Proverbs 10: 32, “Foolish people say proud things to punish people.”
Proverbs 14:3, “If the person who is verbally abusing you is an unrighteous and foolish person, don’t show him dignity by responding to him.”
Give A Soft Answer
Proverbs 15:1 gives us a principle for any response we should make. “A soft answer is a reply given that is tender, gentle, and without any jagged edges of pride.” It is a response free from excitement and resentment, uttered in the low tone of a magnanimous forbearance… A soft answer, like a conducting rod can’t parry the lightning of an enemy into the ground and bury it in silence.
Evaluate Your Reaction
Be a learner. Be an evaluator. Proverbs 15:14 gives us the direction we should take. “The heart of him that has understanding seeks knowledge…”
When you are accused and bristle by an accusation it is usually because there is an element of truth in the accusation. If you throw a stone into a pack of wild dogs the one who gets hit will yelp the loudest. Throw an accusation or an element of verbal abuse towards an individual, if he yells loudly, you hit a tender spot. There most likely is an element of truth in your accusation.
Proud people are reactive in their nature, they take up an offense easily. They are vindictive. Humble people are the ones who experience God’s power (James 4:6).
Dr. Robert Bryant