Proverbs 17:27

Whoever restrains his words has knowledge,
and he who has a cool spirit is a man of understanding.

How is being few with words connected with being knowledgeable? First of all, the person of knowledge and understanding knows that his value is not found in making others see how knowledgeable he is. He is not compelled to speak louder, quicker, and more often than others. His self-esteem is not wrapped up in being thought smart by others.

His understanding is seen in his cool spirit that keeps him from aggravating problems and allows him to calm others. By his cool spirit he can act with wisdom and apply his knowledge productively. He controls his anger because it is the wise thing to do.

He restrains his words, knowing when and to whom to speak, and thus not wasting words or having his words used against him or being misunderstood. This restraint actually raises him in the estimation of others. He may not be recognized for his wisdom early on, but time will provide the occasion and prove his understanding. Whereas, the quick talker will eventually prove how little he really knows.

But note: the man of knowledge and understanding is not praised for keeping his knowledge and wisdom to himself, but rather knowing how to impart them effectively by restraining his impulses. A quiet person does not necessarily know more than the talker. The key is having control over one’s impulses and especially one’s tongue.

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