Gleanings from the Proverbs – Correction Is Necessary

Proverbs 9:7: He that reproveth a scorner getteth to himself shame: and he that rebuketh a wicked man getteth himself a blot.

A wise person receives instruction, but a fool hates reproof. We need to respond, and learn, by the correction we receive. Should you provoke an angry rattlesnake? With a wicked hiss, it will bite quickly and viciously, piercing you with its poisonous fangs! Its forked tongue will dart in and out of a vile mouth, while its evil eyes stare at you with cold and cruel hatred. Snakes are to be avoided! Wise men identify where they live and stay away from them!

What happens if you try to teach or correct a scorner? Same as above! These devilish souls will lash out with a venomous mouth and try to hurt you (Pr 9:8). They are reacting by the spirit of their father within them, that old serpent, the devil (John 8:44; II Tim 2:26). They have no conscience or compassion, as they despise and reject you and your efforts.

Scorners do not deserve correction or truth (Pr 23:9; 26:4; Matt 7:6). They have forfeited affection and concern from wise men. Wasting time on scorners is foolish and risky. These despisers of truth can spend their lives suffering, which the Lord will justly send them. Wise men will not waste breath or reputations talking to them (Pr 24:9; II Tim 2:23).

What is a scorner? It is a despicable character description of an evil person. Not only are they filled with arrogant conceit, but they despise anyone who tries to help them with instruction or reproof (Pr 26:12,16). Their souls foam with hatred and resentment for anyone who does not treat them as a god and bow before their depraved ideas (Is 29:20-21).

What is a scorner? A person who scoffs at religion, resents correction, and derides teachers – a person set in his ways to do wickedness. They are not only stubborn, but they are disrespectful and haughty with ridiculous questions and arrogant responses to reproof. They are disobedient and snotty children who mock and disregard their parents.

If you help a scorner or wicked man, you will get shame and a blot. He will despise and ridicule your wise words; he will hurt you for them; he will do all he can to destroy your reputation; and you will look like a fool for wasting any time on such a person. There is no reason to help a scorner and many against helping one! If it is counterproductive and stupid to honour a fool, it is much more so to honour a scorner (Pr 26:1,8).

The simple are invited to hear wisdom (Pr 9:4-5). But a scorner is another category of fool altogether! The Pharisees were scorners, and they gave Jesus a blot and then crucified Him. Jesus and the apostles would not waste time on them (Mat 7:6; 15:10-14; 21:23-27). His answers to their questions were not to help them but rather to confound and shame them (Matt 22:15-46). He knew that they had no real desire for truth in their hearts.

Wise men avoid scorners, when they detect resentment of correction or those who give it (Pr 9:8; 13:1; 15:12; 19:28; 21:24). They will not degrade truth and wisdom by offering it to them. They will not expose themselves to shame by correcting them. Rejecting scorners will bring peace to your life, for their love of fighting disrupts peace and unity (Pr 22:10).

Wise men identify and reject their own scornful traits. They learn to meekly take correction and reproof. They do not always question or raise another “but” to persons in authority or to their instruction. They are humble hearing reproofs and rebukes, and they appreciate those persons kind enough to teach and warn them (Pr 27:6; Ps 141:5).

Jesus Christ was the opposite of a scorner, for He cheerfully and willingly learned His Father’s will for His life and did it! As the Saviour of sinners, He also forgave scorners like Saul of Tarsus and the thief on the cross. Reader, if you have been a stubborn and difficult case for parents or other teachers in your life, confess your folly to Him today!

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