Choose Your Words Carefully

Jesus said, “Consider carefully how you listen…” (Luke 8:18). It’s equally important to Choose Your Words Carefully.

What is in your heart will eventually come out of your mouth.

choose your words carefully

Here is the entire Scripture passage:

45 The good person out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks. (Luke 6:45)

The devil uses our words against us!

There seems to be agreement among those who teach the Word of God that the devil cannot read the thoughts in our minds.

One teacher wryly observed that the devil doesn’t have to read our thoughts because he put most of them in there.

However, although the enemy may not know what we are thinking, he can hear what we say, read what we write, and observe what we do.

Our negative words and actions give the devil a legal standing in the court of heaven to use our own words and actions against us. That’s why you should Choose Your Words Carefully.

26 Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, 27 and give no opportunity to the devil. (Ephesians 4:26-27)

What You Say Can And Will Be Used Against You!

That’s true in human courts of law, and it’s also true as our accuser attempts to get a ruling against us in the court of Heaven.

As we know, Satan and his demons burn with hatred for Jesus. But, much to their dismay, Jesus defeated them and purchased our salvation by taking human form and sacrificing Himself as full payment for the sins of all who choose to follow Him.

Because Jesus loves us that much, the demons in hell hate us. They can’t touch Jesus, so they do the only other thing they can do: try to destroy those whom Jesus loves. THAT’S US!

Fortunately for us, God has restrained these fallen angels from killing us all instantly. But, because God has given each of us a free will, He cannot stop us from choosing to reject Him. That’s what most people do.

One common way in which we all fail to follow the model Jesus gave us is by saying and doing things that give “opportunity to the devil” to attack us.

Choose Your Words Carefully

Here are just a few examples of things not to speak or write or do, followed by a more biblical response.

  • Do you ever say, when someone has a cold or the flu, “Oh, I’m sure I’ll catch it. I always seem to catch what someone else has.” By saying something like that, you could be giving the devil an opening to go before God and demand the right to infest you, because you as much as invited it upon yourself.

    Instead speak words of faith: “Father, how grateful and blessed I am! Because I know that, according to Psalm 91, You will protect me from ‘deadly pestilence’ and ‘no plague shall come near my tent (my body)'”.

  • I remember seeing many times a slogan thumb-tacked to the partition in the office cubicles of various people, which read: “I always dreamed of making the salary I’m now starving on.” This negative attitude could be giving the devil an opportunity to attack their finances.

    Instead choose on an attitude that says, “I praise You, Lord, because every genuine need of mine is met. Indeed, by the standards of the world, I am in the top 3 percent! Thank you God for supplying every need according to your riches in glory.”

  • Do you put yourself down? Saying things such as, “I’m such a klutz”; “I’m so stupid”; “I can’t do anything right”; etc.

    Instead, if you just did something klutzy, realize that the devil is right there watching for you to give him an opening. Say to him, “Did you enjoy watching me do that just now? Well, that’s all the satisfaction you’re going to get from me. I won’t make that mistake again.” Then give praise to God and ask Him to help you guard against such mistakes in the future. And if you should happen to make the same stupid mistake, don’t give any satisfaction to the devil by dwelling on your failure. In fact, every time the devil reminds you of your past, you remind him of his future!

  • Do you do this? I used to know a man who, when something would confuse him, would say, “Oh, my brain just isn’t working right today!”. That’s not walking in agreement with God. Again, it could be opening the door for the devil.

    Instead, he might have said, “I’m not sure I follow you on this. Help me to understand it better.”

If you’re always putting yourself or others down; if you go around with a chip on your shoulder; if you are one of those for whom the proverbial glass is always half empty (or completely empty); If you deem it your role to critique and bash every imperfection in the world around you; as far as the devil is concerned, you have a “Kick Me” sign on your back!

God is in control; the devil has to seek permission.

Simon, Simon, behold, Satan demanded to have you, that he might sift you like wheat” (Luke 22:31)

It would seem that, somehow, Satan has access to God in heaven. You can see a glimpse of their interaction in following excerpt from Chapter 1 of the book of Job:

Satan Attacks Job’s Character

6 Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came among them. 7 And the Lord said to Satan, “From where do you come?”

So Satan answered the Lord and said, “From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking back and forth on it.”

8 Then the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered My servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, one who fears God and shuns evil?”

9 So Satan answered the Lord and said, “Does Job fear God for nothing? 10 Have You not made a hedge around him, around his household, and around all that he has on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land. 11 But now, stretch out Your hand and touch all that he has, and he will surely curse You to Your face!”

12 And the Lord said to Satan, “Behold, all that he has is in your power; only do not lay a hand on his person.”

So Satan went out from the presence of the Lord.
(Job 1:6-12)

Thus the enemy tempts us, entices us, lures us, waiting and watching for us to go for the bait. When we do, just like a sleazy shyster lawyer, he goes before God and accuses us in an attempt to gain permission to inflict misery upon us.

And I heard a loud voice in heaven, saying, “Now the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God and the authority of his Christ have come, for the accuser of our brothers has been thrown down, who accuses them day and night before our God.(Revelation 12:10)

Then he showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the Lord, and Satan standing at his right hand to accuse him. (Zechariah 3:1)

Can you see from that how relentless Satan and his demons are in their zeal to attack us and bring us down? They consider everything we say and do, hoping to find evidence against us.

This is definitely a supernatural problem.

And supernatural problems require supernatural solutions. We cannot combat Satan and his demons on our own. We need God’s supernatural help.

But here’s the thing…

As with most spiritual issues, It’s up to us to choose to partner with God. There is a part that we must do first, before God will do the part that only He can do. We have to know the ways of the enemy, and equip ourselves with the “Sword of the Spirit, the Word of God.”

Knowing the enemy takes study and practice. You could read about or hear about how to play the guitar. But that’s just the first step. In order to actually do it, you have to practice.

In the same way, if you want to be victorious in these spiritual matters, you have to commit yourself to it.

I’m here to help!

I’ve written many articles that deal with spiritual warfare, and how to defeat the devil. There’s a list of them near the top of the sidebar at right.

Also, I highly recommend the book described directly below.

The Strategy Of Satan | Warren W. Wiersbe

The Strategy Of Satan

Bible teacher, author, and conference speaker Warren W. Wiersbe1 has published more than 150 books. In “The Strategy Of Satan” he gives us detailed insight into how to know and defeat our adversary. Just reading a portion of the table of contents is enlightening:

  • Chapter One THE DECEIVER
    • 1.1 Satan’s Target – Your Mind
    • 1.2 Satan’s Weapon – Lies
    • 1.3 Satan’s Purpose – To Make You Ignorant of God’s Will
    • 1.4 Your Defense –The Inspired Word of God
  • Chapter Two THE DESTROYER
    • 2.1 Satan’s Target – Your Body
    • 2.2 Satan’s Weapon – Suffering
    • 2.3 Satan’s Purpose – To Make You Impatient with God’s Will
    • 2.4 Your Defense – The Imparted Grace of God
  • Chapter Three THE RULER
    • 3.1 Satan’s Target – Your Will
    • 3.2 Satan’s Weapon – Pride
    • 3.3 Satan’s Purpose –To Make You Independent of God’s Will
    • 3.4 Your Defense – The Indwelling Spirit of God

Here are some of the Scriptures I found that caution us about what we say

If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person’s religion is worthless. (James 1:26)

but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison. (James 3:8)

For “Whoever desires to love life and see good days, let him keep his tongue from evil and his lips from speaking deceit;” (1 Peter 3:10 – quoting from Psalm 34:12~14)

The devil knows those Scriptures. He knows how difficult it is for us to control what we say, and like the bully that he is, he seeks to exploit our weakness.

But we have the ultimate weapon: the power of the word of god.

May you be strengthened with all power, according to His glorious might, for all patience and longsuffering with joy. (Colossians 1:11)

9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 10 For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong. (2 Corinthians 12:9)

So Here’s My Plan:

16 All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; 17 so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work. (2 Timothy 3:16~17)

19 Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; 20 for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God. (James 1:19~20)

  • quick to hear – God’s point of view
  • slow to speak – MY point of view
  • slow to anger – When my point of view differs from Gods.

The more Scripture I know, the more God is able to use it to teach me, reprove me, correct me, and train me in regard to my own behavior. So, instead of giving “opportunity to the devil”, I’m giving “permission to God”!

Good plan, yes?

- Jan

  1. Warren W. Wiersbe is a Bible teacher, author, and conference speaker.
    You can purchase “The Strategy Of Satan” at:

The cover design shown above is a special design for Turning Point Ministries. Copies of “The Strategy Of Satan” purchased online have a different cover design.


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{ 22 comments… add one }
  • Carla 12/15/2021, 5:18 AM

    How can I order a real book not a pdf or digital book. Thank-you.

    Reply Link
    • Jan Smith 01/01/2022, 11:25 AM

      Carla, I am in the process of publishing a book containing 15 articles from this blog.

      Be patient. These things take time. –jan

      Reply Link
  • Cindy butz 08/19/2020, 9:24 AM

    Want to order 3 of ur books on strategy of Satan

    Reply Link
    • Jan Smith 08/19/2020, 3:10 PM

      Hi, Cindy. Go back to the article you read about choosing your words carefully, and go to the bottom of the article. I didn’t write that book that book about the strategy of Satan. Author Warren W. Wiersbe wrote the book. I have provided links to two book sellers that you can order from.

      Reply Link
  • Jonathan Opoku 04/26/2020, 12:10 PM

    Pls, how can I make purchase of the Strategy of Satan,and perhaps also be a potential seller of this book, in Ghana.

    Reply Link
    • Jan Smith 04/27/2020, 12:35 PM

      Jonathan, thanks for asking. You may not have noticed, but in the FOOTNOTES at the bottom of the article, I have added two links to stores that sell “The Strategy Of Satan”. Try those vendors.

      Reply Link
  • Xendia 03/22/2020, 11:39 PM

    You have unlocked a valuable key piece of information for an experience I had with the Lord and thanked him for letting me see this, it has truly opened my eyes and the scales are being removed from my eyes thanking God for this

    Reply Link
  • Desiree 02/28/2019, 11:18 AM

    Most of this makes sense & has given me a new perspective but I do have a question. From what I’m reading you’re saying that the devil can’t do anything to us without 1st asking God and God has to give him permission. If that is the case couldn’t people use the argument that bad things happen because of God because He could tell the devil no? My understanding has always been the devil does what he wants against what God wants & that’s why he was cast out. Not that he’s granted permission to do what he wants.

    Reply Link
  • Blanca Esquivel 10/07/2018, 10:28 PM

    Im fighting demons that r inside me!!! Actually serpents ivd havd dem for over 10 yrs. Inside me but i thought dey wer gone now da priest dat supposedly helpd me died and i dont know wat to do??? I pray dem out but dey keep jumping back inside me!!! I need real help!!!! I want dem to stop jumping back inside me!!!! Ps i can answer u faster if u text message me i rarely look at my email and i rarely answer my phone bcuz of so much scam!!! Bfor u start wanting to charge me i dont hav money i need help!!! Pleaz honor me with an answer at 830-319-6780 BLANCA!!!!!

    Reply Link
  • Glynis 09/27/2018, 9:44 PM

    All your information was very helpful. Thanks!

    Reply Link
    • Jan Smith 09/28/2018, 10:50 AM

      Glynis, thanks for your gracious words! It’s my privilege – my joy and delight – to serve God in this way by giving to others what He has given to me.

      Reply Link
  • Ron 08/28/2018, 3:54 PM

    Really enjoyed this teaching,thank you for all your ministry does for The Lord ,may God continually bless this ministry as the word is going forth. Ron and tina creekmore

    Reply Link
    • Jan Smith 08/28/2018, 7:34 PM

      Thank you for your kind words, Ron and Tina.
      And thank you for the blessing you prayed over me and this micro-ministry. It’s all His doing.

      Reply Link
  • benjamin 04/01/2018, 4:57 PM

    Thank u for every effort you’ve made to bring out truths.
    Please kindly brief me on “devils ability to read ”
    I mean how they read words that are written which are not spoken out.

    Reply Link
    • Jan Smith 04/05/2018, 9:03 PM

      Hi, Benjamin,
      You raise a good point. One clue that comes to mind is in Matthew chapter 4, where Satan quotes Scripture:

      5 Then the devil took him to the holy city and set him on the pinnacle of the temple 6 and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down, for it is written, “‘He will command his angels concerning you,’ and “‘On their hands they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone.’” (Matthew 4:5~6)

      So from this we know that they can read. Satan and his demons are highly intelligent beings. But they don’t know everything. But their goal is to trick you and try to throw you off-guard if they can.

      Reply Link
  • Kathy 10/08/2016, 11:26 AM

    Since I was very young I was taught that spoken words could be used against us by Satan . I never knew written words could be used by Satan as well. Please show me where to look in the word to study on this subject.

    Reply Link
    • Jan Smith 10/09/2016, 2:57 PM

      I cannot recall a passage that expressly addresses written words. (or our actions, which the devil also uses against us), but I do know that the devil accuses us continually, in any way that he can, to give him a leg to stand on when he accuses us before God.

      Reply Link
  • Laura 04/21/2016, 3:55 PM

    As I began to read this article, I felt it was going in the right direction, but, when I came to the part that talked about a person with a cold and if we answered ,” I’m sure I will catch it…”, that’s when I stopped. You wrote that the devil can go before God and ask to infest us, we’ll, you are wrong there. In the Old Testament, satan did go before God when he wanted to attack Job. You seem to have forgotten that when Jesus died, He went down to hell and took the keys away from the devil.
    Meaning: He arose from the dead and ascended into heaven, is seated at the right hand of the Father. The devil was defeated and is under His footstool.
    Meaning: the devil can never again go before the Throne of God, touch any part of heaven, he was completely banded and cast down.
    You have it wrong. What you are implying is that satan still has the ability to enter heaven. No way! Go back and read it over again. Ask our Lord to explain it to you. I pray you read this in love and brotherhood in Christ Jesus. Amen!

    Reply Link
    • Jan Smith 04/21/2016, 7:22 PM

      Hi, Laura,
      Thank you so much for raising that issue. Because if you’re seeing it that way, it’s likely others are, too.
      By the way, I appreciate your politeness in your comment. And you are right – in part. True, the devil is defeated, but he certainly is still alive and trying with all his wicked demons to take all of us to hell for eternity. Agreed?

      I would dispute your statement saying, “the devil can never again go before the Throne of God”. In Revelation, John wrote this concerning the devil (emphasis mine):

      And I heard a loud voice in heaven, saying, “Now the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God and the authority of his Christ have come, for the accuser of our brothers has been thrown down, who accuses them day and night before our God. (Revelation 12:10)

      I’ve always taken that to mean it’s going on right now, and one day Satan and his demons will be sent to the pit of hell. But meanwhile, they are going for us like this:

      Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. (i Peter 5:8)

      Of course, Peter was speaking figuratively when he wrote that about them devouring us. But I know that the goal of Satan and all his demons is to take every soul to hell for eternity. If they could kill us all, the would have. But God is restraining them. They can go just so far… but no farther. God has to approve everything they do to us. Pastor James MacDonald (Walk In The Word ministries) has used the expression, “God has him on a leash”.

      Reply Link
  • Sidney 07/07/2014, 5:51 AM

    I think everything published made a bunch of sense.
    However, what about this? suppose you were to create a
    killer title? I am not saying your information isn’t solid., but what if you added a post title that grabbed a
    person’s attention? I mean Choose Your Words Carefully – the devil can use them
    against you is a little plain. You might glance at Yahoo’s home page
    and watch how they write post headlines to get viewers interested.

    You might try adding a video or a related picture or two to grab readers excited about what you’ve written. Just my opinion, it would bring your posts a
    little bit more interesting.

    Reply Link
  • Rapey Children-Lots 06/11/2014, 10:47 AM

    When I was a small man my father thrust his words deep inside me with such force that I would emotionally cower from God’s love. Then one day I fell to my knees and received the Lord inside me deeper than my father’s deep penetrating hurt. Praise Him!!

    Reply Link
    • Jan Smith 06/11/2014, 12:04 PM

      One difference between your human father and your Heavenly Father is that God will never force His Word or His help upon us. Each of has to ask.

      Reply Link