(Prov 27:3 GW) A stone is heavy, and sand weighs a lot, but annoyance caused by a stubborn fool is heavier than both.
This morning we continue our series entitled, “Unlocking the Power of Proverbs – Walking in the Wisdom of God.” In verses 3-6 of this chapter Solomon discusses various interpersonal relationships. He starts out with the difficulty involved with dealing with a fool. The Amplified Bible translation of this verse reads: “Stone is heavy and sand weighty, but a fool’s [unreasoning] wrath is heavier and more intolerable than both of them.” Have you ever met someone who is completely stubborn and unreasonable to the point where it pained you to deal with them? Well, if you haven’t then I have dealt with enough for both of us. The simple message of this proverb is that it is difficult to deal with difficult people. Okay, point made; but if I stopped there then we might miss the mark. If we just read Solomon’s proverb, without understanding the rest of the Bible, we could make excuses for ourselves when we get upset with difficult people. We could say, “Well, even the Bible tells me that it is hard to deal with a stubborn fool.” But while it is difficult, this one verse does not exonerate us from the rest of scripture and there are numerous verses that command us to walk in love towards all people; yes, even towards the stubborn, brash, loudmouthed fool.
As New Testament believers love is our ultimate requirement. Paul said it this way: “If I speak with human eloquence and angelic ecstasy but don’t love, I’m nothing but the creaking of a rusty gate. If I speak God’s Word with power, revealing all his mysteries and making everything plain as day, and if I have faith that says to a mountain, “Jump,” and it jumps, but I don’t love, I’m nothing. If I give everything I own to the poor and even go to the stake to be burned as a martyr, but I don’t love, I’ve gotten nowhere. So, no matter what I say, what I believe, and what I do, I’m bankrupt without love” (1 Cor 13:1-3). Nothing we say or do really matters if we say or do it outside of God’s love. Remember, the God we serve IS love (1 Jn 4:8). Love is not something He has, love is not something He does, love is what our God IS! And if He is IN us and we are IN Him, then He expects us to operate in love, even towards difficult people.
John said, “If anyone boasts, “I love God,” and goes right on hating his brother or sister, thinking nothing of it, he is a liar. If he won’t love the person he can see, how can he love the God he can’t see? The command we have from Christ is blunt: Loving God includes loving people. You’ve got to love both” (1 Jn 4:20,21). Jesus Himself, while preparing His disciples for His impending departure, said, “Let me give you a new command: Love one another. In the same way I loved you, you love one another. This is how everyone will recognize that you are my disciples—when they see the love you have for each other” (John 13:34,35).
So what does this mean to you today? A few things:
1. The Bible commands us to love… even the difficult people.
2. While stubborn fools are annoying, you must never allow them to get you outside of love.
3. Don’t allow anyone to cause you to get offended. Once you cross the line into offense, then you will hinder the flow of God in your life. So be quick to forgive… yes, even the fool.
4. You prove the love you have for the God you can’t see by loving those you can see!
Closing Confession: Father, I thank You for perfecting me in Your love. You are love. Love is not what You have or do; love is who You are and since You are in me and I am in You, then I declare by faith that I operate in Your divine love daily. I understand how difficult it can be to deal with an unreasonable loudmouth fool, but I refuse to allow their foolishness to get me outside of Your love. No matter what others do to me, I will not allow my heart to cross the line into offense. I will not carry around a root of bitterness, resentment or unforgiveness towards anyone. I prove my love for You daily by walking in love with others. When others do me wrong I am quick to forgive, because I am developed and developing in Your love! In Jesus’ name. Amen!
This is Today’s Word! Apply it and Prosper!