Summary: Solomon shares some contrasts between good and evil.
Good and Evil
15 A asoft answer turns away wrath, But ba harsh word stirs up anger.
2 The tongue of the wise uses knowledge rightly,
cBut the mouth of fools pours forth foolishness.
3 dThe eyes of the LORD are in every place,
Keeping watch on the evil and the good.
4 A 1wholesome tongue is a tree of life,
But perverseness in it breaks the spirit.
Have you ever made a decision in the moment that you knew was wrong but you tried to justify it buy telling yourself that it was a grey area? Like I decided to buy a couple scratch off lottery tickets one day because it really isn’t wrong besides it supports education so I was really doing a good thing. Solomon, possibly the wisest man in the Old Testament, had spent his life watching people make decisions and he came to the conclusion that every decision was either right or wrong, good or evil there are no grey areas. In the first seven verses of Proverbs 15 Solomon gives us some contrasts between good and evil. Let’s look at some examples of these contrasts between good and evil.
In verse one and two,
I. We are to use soft words not harsh words. Verses 1-2
A. Soft words turn away wrath
Have you ever tried to whisper to someone who was yelling at you? It is almost impossible to do unless we intention in our minds to do it. We really must be careful to speak in such a way that people do not think we are yelling at them. If they think we are yelling then they will yell which in turn will cause us to begin yelling and then it is very difficult to defuse the situation. My dad and I use to play this game all the time. He would be speaking loudly and passionately to me and so I would speak loudly back and then he thought I was yelling at him so he would begin yelling at me and on and on it went. Christians we must purposely control our tone of voice if we are to get our message across without upsetting those we are sharing with. The tongue of the wise uses knowledge rightly.
B. Harsh words stir up anger.
When my wife and I argue it is almost always because one of us thinks that the other one is being harsh with their words or comments. Now we love each other very much but we are not always the best at getting our thoughts or feelings out in a way that does not stir up anger in the other. If words can cause so much hurt between people who love each other then imagine the damage we do to our witness when we verbally attack the people who so badly need Christ in their life. In order for us to remain proper witnesses we must understand this concept in regards to the people who are close to us as well as those who are not. If you smile at your neighbor and tell them about the peace of Jesus and they hear you screaming at your spouse, friends, or family they will be hard pressed to believe you. The mouth of fools pours forth foolishness.
The next example is,
II. The contrast between God’s watchfulness of evil and good. Verse 3
A. The eyes of the of the Lord are in every place
Sometimes we think that we can escape God’s watchful eye. We may not be willing to admit we do this but our actions can say different. For example people who are addicted to pornography often have a place or time when they believe themselves to be safe from any interruptions. The reason the hide is because of the shame they feel from what they are doing. If they were to grasp the fact that God was watching them they would feel the great shame that Adam and Eve felt as they covered themselves and hid from God. God is as real and as present today as He was in the garden and one day we will realize that He has been watching our every move and recording our every word. While pornography is one of the great taboos of our culture there are many less discussed issues that trouble the heart of God as He watches His children. Some yell and curse at anyone who dare cut them off in traffic. Some abuse their spouses verbally and physically. Some become drunk or high. Some listen to filthy music and watch filthy shows and movies. The one common denominator in all of these things is that people feel safe doing these things as if God cannot see them outside of the Church.