In the mouth of the foolish is a rod of pride: but the lips of the wise shall preserve them.
– Proverbs 14:3
The phrase, rod of pride, is difficult with various interpretations. The words, mouth and lips, are here put for speech, so the proverb is speaking to the fruits of our speech. In that light, the rod of pride speaks of some hurt that comes to the foolish for their foolish speech. Solomon wrote foolish words call for punishment (Proverbs 18:6) and that punishment will be reaped (Proverbs 22:8). The wise shall be kept or delivered from trouble through wise speech (Proverbs 12:6).