Themes in the Book of Proverbs: Strife

 

The word strife is not much used today but it has severe implications. Strife is defined as – angry or bitter disagreement over fundamental issues; conflict. Instead of strife we use words like bickering, fighting and disagreement.

Proverbs 15:18 A hot-tempered man stirs up strife, But the slow to anger calms a dispute.

In what category do we fall? Are we one who could be labeled as hot-tempered or are we slow to anger? If we will digest this verse there are at least two helpful hints to a hot tempered man that stirs up strife.

First, it is our disposition that often decides a situation before we are ever engaged in conflict. When someone approaches us with an upset look we are automatically on the defense before they ever say a word.

Second, for us to change our hot tempered attitude we have to realize the outcome. This is the conclusion of the man that is slow to anger. He is able to calm a dispute before it ever begins. Our wrathful inclination will hinder us from seeing the bigger picture. Strife should never be our goal but love with kind words (Proverbs 15:1).