Proverbs 14:3 (NKJV) — 3 In the mouth of a fool is a rod of pride, but the lips of the wise will preserve them.
The rod of pride. The “rod of pride” here is a metaphor for foolish, vain, conceited words. The motivating factor behind most foolish conversation is pride. The rod is a weapon; and thus the rod of pride in the mouth of fools indicates their words are dangerous and damaging. They will provoke retaliation.
Wise persons, however, speak words that protect and bless them. A good example is found in Proverbs 15:1: “A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.”