The foolish, the lazy, the deceiver and the contentious. None of these have the characteristics or attributes that Christ is looking for, but all of these are very common in our world. Read Proverbs 26.
The Foolish – Proverbs 26:1-12
Like snow in summer and like rain in harvest, So honor is not fitting for a fool. Like a sparrow in its flitting, like a swallow in its flying, So a curse without cause does not alight. A whip is for the horse, a bridle for the donkey, And a rod for the back of fools. Do not answer a fool according to his folly, Or you will also be like him. Answer a fool as his folly deserves, That he not be wise in his own eyes. He cuts off his own feet and drinks violence Who sends a message by the hand of a fool. Like the legs which are useless to the lame, So is a proverb in the mouth of fools. Like one who binds a stone in a sling, So is he who gives honor to a fool. Like a thorn which falls into the hand of a drunkard, So is a proverb in the mouth of fools. Like an archer who wounds everyone, So is he who hires a fool or who hires those who pass by. Like a dog that returns to its vomit Is a fool who repeats his folly. Do you see a man wise in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.
Proverbs 26:1-12 NASB
So many ways to spot a fool! And so much damage any fool could do! Every one of us have had an interaction with a fool before. We must recognize and understand if we’re not careful, we will be the fool. Are we actively seeking the wisdom of God to counteract our own sinful foolishness?
The Lazy – Proverbs 26:13-17
The sluggard says, “There is a lion in the road! A lion is in the open square!” As the door turns on its hinges, So does the sluggard on his bed. The sluggard buries his hand in the dish; He is weary of bringing it to his mouth again. The sluggard is wiser in his own eyes Than seven men who can give a discreet answer. Like one who takes a dog by the ears Is he who passes by and meddles with strife not belonging to him.
Proverbs 26:13-17 NASB
Do you prefer to let other people do all the work? If we are waiting for God to do all the work in our life, we will be waiting a long time. God desires to see us move and work together with him because we need to be involved in all that he is doing. The lazy will never accomplish anything.
The Deceiver and the Contentious – Proverbs 26:18-28
Like a madman who throws Firebrands, arrows and death, So is the man who deceives his neighbor, And says, “Was I not joking?” For lack of wood the fire goes out, And where there is no whisperer, contention quiets down. Like charcoal to hot embers and wood to fire, So is a contentious man to kindle strife. The words of a whisperer are like dainty morsels, And they go down into the innermost parts of the body. Like an earthen vessel overlaid with silver dross Are burning lips and a wicked heart. He who hates disguises it with his lips, But he lays up deceit in his heart. When he speaks graciously, do not believe him, For there are seven abominations in his heart. Though his hatred covers itself with guile, His wickedness will be revealed before the assembly. He who digs a pit will fall into it, And he who rolls a stone, it will come back on him. A lying tongue hates those it crushes, And a flattering mouth works ruin.
Proverbs 26:18-28 NASB
Whether you are lying about stuff or stirring up trouble, neither one will get you the positive results that you desire. God knows that people who are constantly stirring up trouble just to do so will never see the relationships and the wisdom that God desires to bring through our relationships with others. People who are not trustworthy but are lying about things all the time, we will never be able to build those relationships either. Do we tell the truth? Do we seek peace between people? Only by doing these things will we seek and find the wisdom of God.