Biblical References: Proverbs 14-15
Leading Question: Proverbs 14:12 declares: “There is a way that appears to be right, but in the end it leads to death.” How can the believer tell when what appears to be right is actually wrong?
In the widely-varying proverbs found in Proverbs 14 – 15, our focus will be on two themes: kindness and patience. And again it is worth asking the question whether the truth of these proverbs would be recognized by believers and non-believers alike. With reference to both of these traits, it could be asked where the limits and boundaries of kindness and patience should be placed. Should one always be kind? Should one be patient forever? Here are the proverbs:
14:21 It is a sin to despise one’s neighbor, but blessed is the one who is kind to the needy.
14:31 Whoever oppresses the poor shows contempt for their Maker, but whoever is kind to the needy honors God.
Note: The emphasis here is on kindness to the needy. But what about kindness in a more general way? Should one also be kind to that much-maligned group in Proverbs, the wicked?
14:29 Whoever is patient has great understanding, but one who is quick-tempered displays folly.
15:18 A hot-tempered person stirs up conflict, but the one who is patient calms a quarrel.
Would it be possible to reclaim some of the wicked through patience?