They speak great swelling words of emptiness...
If you have been foolish in exalting yourself, or if you have devised evil, put your hand on your mouth.
In the multitude of words sin is not lacking, but he who restrains his lips is wise.
Knowledge puffs up, but love edifies.
Big talkers are seldom big doers. Puffed up braggers bear little to no fruit. They talk about production, but they don't produce. On the other hand, the people of greatest influence I have known don't talk about it. They don't need to brag about accomplishments, because their work brags for them.
Big talkers seldom listen. 'He who answers a matter before he hears it, it is folly and shame to him' (Proverbs 18:13). 'The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, but a wise man is he who listens to counsel' (Proverbs 12:15). 'He who has ears to hear, let him hear' (Matthew 11:15).
Since big talkers seldom listen, you should seldom (or never) listen to them. Consider the consequences:
'The serpent said to the woman, 'You surely will not die! For God knows that in the day you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil' (Genesis 3:4-5).
The original big talker, who is Satan, the one who thought he was as good or better than God, encourages millions to follow his lead. Don't be among them. Don't get puffed up by your own knowledge, appearance, accomplishments or talent. God exposed the serpent's lie and expelled him from Heaven.
So listen first. Speak second and keep your words humble. Avoid superlatives and exclamation points. Don't brag about your work, your family or yourself. You are not the best, the most, the smartest or the highest. Neither is anyone else, but One: Jesus. Consider His Word on this matter:
'Whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted' (Luke 14:11).
To Be Continued...
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Superlatives! series.