Proverbs 12:18
Parallel Verses
New International Version
The words of the reckless pierce like swords, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.

New Living Translation
Some people make cutting remarks, but the words of the wise bring healing.

English Standard Version
There is one whose rash words are like sword thrusts, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.

New American Standard Bible
There is one who speaks rashly like the thrusts of a sword, But the tongue of the wise brings healing.

King James Bible
There is that speaketh like the piercings of a sword: but the tongue of the wise is health.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
There is one who speaks rashly, like a piercing sword; but the tongue of the wise brings healing.

International Standard Version
Some speak rashly like the cutting of a sword, but what the wise say promotes healing.

NET Bible
Speaking recklessly is like the thrusts of a sword, but the words of the wise bring healing.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
There are those that speak a stabbing sword, but the tongue of the wise heals.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Careless words stab like a sword, but the words of wise people bring healing.

Jubilee Bible 2000
There are those that speak like the piercings of a sword, but the tongue of the wise is medicine.

King James 2000 Bible
There is one that speaks like the piercings of a sword: but the tongue of the wise brings health.

American King James Version
There is that speaks like the piercings of a sword: but the tongue of the wise is health.

American Standard Version
There is that speaketh rashly like the piercings of a sword; But the tongue of the wise is health.

Douay-Rheims Bible
There is that promiseth, and is pricked as it were with a sword of conscience: but the tongue of the wise is health.

Darby Bible Translation
There is that babbleth like the piercings of a sword; but the tongue of the wise is health.

English Revised Version
There is that speaketh rashly like the piercings of a sword: but the tongue of the wise is health.

Webster's Bible Translation
There is that speaketh like the piercings of a sword: but the tongue of the wise is health.

World English Bible
There is one who speaks rashly like the piercing of a sword, but the tongue of the wise heals.

Young's Literal Translation
A rash speaker is like piercings of a sword, And the tongue of the wise is healing.
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

12:16. A foolish man is soon angry, and is hasty in expressing it; he is ever in trouble and running into mischief. It is kindness to ourselves to make light of injuries and affronts, instead of making the worst of them. 17. It is good for all to dread and detest the sin of lying, and to be governed by honesty. 18. Whisperings and evil surmises, like a sword, separate those that have been dear to each other. The tongue of the wise is health, making all whole. 19. If truth be spoken, it will hold good; whoever may be disobliged, still it will keep its ground. 20. Deceit and falsehood bring terrors and perplexities. But those who consult the peace and happiness of others have joy in their own minds. 21. If men are sincerely righteous, the righteous God has engaged that no evil shall happen to them. But they that delight in mischief shall have enough of it. 22. Make conscience of truth, not only in words, but in actions. 23. Foolish men proclaim to all the folly and emptiness of their minds. 24. Those who will not take pains in an honest calling, living by tricks and dishonesty, are paltry and beggarly. 25. Care, fear, and sorrow, upon the spirits, deprive men of vigour in what is to be done, or courage in what is to be borne. A good word from God, applied by faith, makes the heart glad. 26. The righteous is abundant; though not in this world's goods, yet in the graces and comforts of the Spirit, which are the true riches. Evil men vainly flatter themselves that their ways are not wrong. 27. The slothful man makes no good use of the advantages Providence puts in his way, and has no comfort in them. The substance of a diligent man, though not great, does good to him and his family. He sees that God gives it to him in answer to prayer. 28. The way of religion is a straight, plain way; it is the way of righteousness. There is not only life at the end, but life in the way; all true comfort.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 18. - There is that speaketh. The word implies speaking thoughtlessly, rashly; hence we may render, "a babbler," "prater." Such a one inflicts wounds with his senseless tattle. Like the piercings of a sword. The point of the simile is seen when we remember that the edge of the sword is called its "mouth" in the Hebrew (Genesis 34:26; Exodus 17:13, etc.; comp. Psalm 59:7; Psalm 64:3). The Greek gnome says -

Ἀλλ οὐδὲν ἕρπει ψεῦδος εἰς γῆρας χρόνου

"A sword the body wounds, a word the soul." Vulgate, est qui promittit, which restricts the scope of the clause to the making of vain promises (Leviticus 5:4; Numbers 30:7-9), continuing, et quasi gladio pungitur conscientiae, "And is pierced as it were by the sword of his conscience." where "conscience" is added to make the meaning plain. Such a man suffers remorse if he breaks his promise, or if, like Jephthah, he keeps it. The tongue of the wise is health; it does not pierce and wound like that of the chatterer, rather it soothes and heals even when it reproves (Proverbs 4:22; Proverbs 10:11).

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

There is that speaketh like the piercings of a sword,.... Whose words are like sharp swords, cutting, wounding, dividing, killing; see Psalm 57:4; such are the words of false witnesses, who by their false testimonies and perjuries are as guilty of the murder of men as cutthroats; such are the words of slanderers, backbiters, and talebearers, who grieve the innocent, wound their characters, destroy their good name and credit, and separate chief friends; and such are the words of antichrist, who looks like a lamb, but speaks like a dragon, Revelation 13:11;

but the tongue of the wise is health; or "healing" (e); by giving a faithful testimony which sets matters right; by clearing and defending the character of those who are falsely accused and wrongfully charged; by making up differences, and reconciling persons at variance through the detracting and lying insinuations of others; and by speaking comfortable, cheerful, and refreshing words to the injured and abused; especially the tongue of a wise minister of the Gospel is health, or healing, to wounded souls, to whom he ministers the Gospel of the grace of God, which directs to Christ for healing, peace, pardon, righteousness, and eternal life.

(e) "medicinae", Junius & Tremellius; "medicina", Piscator, Cocceius; "sanatio", Michaelis; "sanatrix", Schultens.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

18. speaketh—literally, "speaketh hastily," or indiscreetly (Ps 106:33), as an angry man retorts harsh and provoking invectives.

tongue … health—by soothing and gentle language.

Proverbs 12:18 Additional Commentaries
Context
Loving Discipline and Knowledge
17He who speaks truth tells what is right, But a false witness, deceit. 18There is one who speaks rashly like the thrusts of a sword, But the tongue of the wise brings healing. 19Truthful lips will be established forever, But a lying tongue is only for a moment.…
Cross References
Psalm 57:4
I am in the midst of lions; I am forced to dwell among ravenous beasts-- men whose teeth are spears and arrows, whose tongues are sharp swords.

Psalm 59:7
See what they spew from their mouths-- the words from their lips are sharp as swords, and they think, "Who can hear us?"

Proverbs 4:22
for they are life to those who find them and health to one's whole body.

Proverbs 12:17
An honest witness tells the truth, but a false witness tells lies.

Proverbs 15:4
The soothing tongue is a tree of life, but a perverse tongue crushes the spirit.

Proverbs 25:18
Like a club or a sword or a sharp arrow is one who gives false testimony against a neighbor.
Treasury of Scripture

There is that speaks like the piercings of a sword: but the tongue of the wise is health.

that

Proverbs 25:18 A man that bears false witness against his neighbor is a maul, and …

Psalm 52:2 The tongue devises mischiefs; like a sharp razor, working deceitfully.

Psalm 57:4 My soul is among lions: and I lie even among them that are set on …

Psalm 59:7 Behold, they belch out with their mouth: swords are in their lips: …

Psalm 64:3 Who whet their tongue like a sword, and bend their bows to shoot …

James 3:6-8 And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among …

like

Revelation 1:16 And he had in his right hand seven stars: and out of his mouth went …

but

Proverbs 10:20,21 The tongue of the just is as choice silver: the heart of the wicked …

Proverbs 13:17 A wicked messenger falls into mischief: but a faithful ambassador is health.

Proverbs 15:7 The lips of the wise disperse knowledge: but the heart of the foolish …

Proverbs 16:24 Pleasant words are as an honeycomb, sweet to the soul, and health to the bones.

Daniel 11:33 And they that understand among the people shall instruct many: yet …

Revelation 22:2 In the middle of the street of it, and on either side of the river, …

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