Violence is not the way to go. Proverbs repeatedly warns young men not to join in with those who physically hurt others. Neither should young men or young women bully others with their words. Instead, wise Christians focus on knowing and doing God’s will. Our real war should be against sin and foolishness, both from the world without and our own evil hearts within us. The person who gets knowledge from God’s Word and other wise Christians and then lives by that knowledge – this is the victorious warrior of the Lord’s army. By wisdom, not violence, you will become strong and enjoy God’s blessings and favor. You will be kept safe from the bitter consequences that fall on others because of their troublemaking. The harsh results of sin might start small now, like getting pink slips or having a phone taken away. But the penalties of sin will get way more serious as you get older (think relationships ruined by angry outbursts, jobs lost because of being unable to get along with others, etc.) if you do not wise up and turn from the path of physical and verbal violence. Hear the words of wisdom today and pursue God’s fights by God’s methods. Seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and you will find abundant life and the peace of Christ.
The Text (Proverbs 24:1-6)
24 Do not be envious of evil men, Nor desire to be with them;
2 For their heart devises violence, And their lips talk of troublemaking.
3 Through wisdom a house is built, And by understanding it is established;
4 By knowledge the rooms are filled With all precious and pleasant riches.
5 A wise man is strong, Yes, a man of knowledge increases strength;
6 For by wise counsel you will wage your own war, And in a multitude of counselors there is safety.
Questions to Think About
- Do you ever struggle with hurting or wanting to hurt others? Why or why not?
- When you have a difficult decision to make, do you seek advice from older and wise Christians? Can you think of a recent time when a more mature Christian tried to counsel you from God’s Word about your life? How did you receive this advice?