Skip to main content

Romans 3:13: Their Throat Is An Open Grave; They Use Their Tongues To Deceive


Romans 3:13
[13] “Their throat is an open grave; they use their tongues to deceive.” “The venom of asps is under their lips.” (ESV)

Have you ever spent time walking through a cemetery? On several occasions I have gone through a cemetery, reading all of the tombstones. I found it intriguing to imagine what kind of life was lived by the person buried beneath me. While it was fun to walk on top of the tomb beneath me, it would be quite another matter to dig one up and look inside!

Graves are closed for two reasons. One reason is to give respect for the dead. The other reason is because of the stench! I am not sure if you have been around a dead body, but it is not an air freshener. The process of rot and decay in human flesh brings a stench that is just about unbearable. This is the image the Apostle Paul uses to help us understand the human condition.

Here we have described for us the sinful man who does not know Jesus Christ. What comes out of his mouth is compared to what you would get from an open grave. Vile, rotting, stench of death. Not exactly an encouraging picture. Yet, if you were to be honest, you would have to admit that without God's intervention in your life by the power of his Holy Spirit, you have produced some filth from your mouth!

Look at the second illustration in this verse. Not only do we get filth as in a rotting carcass, but we also find that the unregenerate mouth produces cunning. The asp, or snake, is used to describe the cunning that we produce. It is interesting to consider that the first example of cunning we find in Scripture is that of a serpent. Satan brought down humanity with his cunning in the Garden.

God's power brings transformation to those who were formerly bound in sin. That transformation should include bringing our tongue into submission to God's holy standard. Ask him to help you to speak words of truth; words that build up and not tear down.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Romans 8:18: For I Consider That The Sufferings Of This Present Time Are Not Worth Comparing

Romans 8:18
[18] For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. (ESV)

Perspective. What an important word. Let's be honest. We do not like the idea of suffering. We will do almost anything to avoid any kind of suffering. Some churches have gone so far as to preach against the idea of suffering, declaring it to not be a part of the true believer's life. Paul is not shy about the topic.

Paul uses the sufferings of this present time as a means to consider the greater glory that awaits us. Perspective. Paul is not in any way attempting to diminish our suffering. A view toward eternity puts our suffering in a proper understanding. Yes, our suffering is terrible. In the grand scheme of eternity it is not even worth comparison.

Maybe you are thinking that Paul does not know what he is talking about when it comes to suffering. In 2 Corinthians 11 Paul describes countless beatings, often near death, being ston…

Romans 15:14: I Myself Am Satisfied About You, My Brothers

Romans 15:14
[14] I myself am satisfied about you, my brothers, that you yourselves are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge and able to instruct one another. (ESV)

The Apostle Paul was a strong man. His words to the churches in all of his letters are full of doctrinal truth and instruction that are not for the faint of heart. In this letter to the church at Rome he had to correct them in their understanding of how to deal with issues that could potentially divide them. Paul had never even been to Rome yet. He had not met these believers.

Paul is telling the church at Rome in this verse that the reason they were able to receive his strong words was because of their spiritual maturity. He declares that they are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge and able to instruct one another. This is an incredible compliment that Paul would not offer to every church.

This concept of being filled with goodness and knowledge speaks of a group of believers who had listened to the Word of…

Romans 15:16: To Be A Minister Of Christ Jesus To The Gentiles In The Priestly Service Of The Gospel Of God

Romans 15:16
[16] to be a minister of Christ Jesus to the Gentiles in the priestly service of the gospel of God, so that the offering of the Gentiles may be acceptable, sanctified by the Holy Spirit. (ESV)

The time of the Early Church was a time of great transition. Up until Christ coming and bringing redemption to all who believer the people of faith were the Jews. If you wanted to worship God the only appropriate way was to go through a priest who would offer sacrifices on your behalf to God. All of the sacrificial system was fulfilled in Christ. Now, there was a new way to righteousness.

This time of transition was a challenge for all involved. The Jews had to move from an approach to God that involved keeping the Law. The Law was fulfilled in Christ. Now the way of salvation was a way of faith. There were some traditional aspects that were now gone. It was hard for them to move away from their traditions. It is hard for all of us to move from our traditions.

For the Gentile convert…