Verse of the Day Devotion: Proverbs 14:29
“He who is slow to anger has great understanding, but he who is quick-tempered exalts folly.” – Proverbs 14:29
One thing I have definitely noticed during this difficult time is what this verse speaks of. In watching what is happening, we see people punching and beating people in the streets. We also see the destruction of public and private property, and also massive retaliation for what I deem as frivolous offenses. Anger appears to be the most observed emotion today.
Now, I understand that often these things happen simply because people just want to be destructive. There are organizations whose total purpose for being involved is to wreak havoc and fuel the hostilities of others. However, there are many who are just angry in response to a wrong done to them, either physically or verbally. And many times, anger at someone will often cause them to be angry in return. And this is the main idea regarding this verse. Solomon writes in our focus verse that we are to be slow to anger, because they are those who exhibit great understanding. Matthew Henry in his commentary on Proverbs states that meekness is wisdom. He goes on to say, “He rightly understands himself, and his duty and interest, the infirmities of human nature, and the constitution of human society, who is slow to anger, and knows how to excuse the faults of others as well as his own, how to adjourn his resentments, and moderate them, so as by no provocation to be put out of the possession of his own soul.” What he is saying is that he is capable of keeping control of his thoughts and feelings and is not one to retaliate for another’s anger.
Paul writes the following to the Ephesians. “Therefore I, the prisoner of the Lord, implore you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing tolerance for one another in love, being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” Ephesians 4:1-3. Uncontrolled anger is one of the biggest reasons for dis-unity. It can also harden the hearts of the people we are witnessing the truth of Christ to. James, understanding this wrote the following, “This you know, my beloved brethren. But everyone must be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger; for the anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God.” James 1:19-20. If we desire to show the righteousness of God in us, we must temper any times where we find ourselves getting angry. If we cannot control our anger, we may find ourselves unable to do the work God has called us to do.
In closing, let us be careful that we maintain control in all situations so that our witness of Christ will remain intact and powerful. At the end of our focus verse, Solomon states that a quick temper exalts folly. He may be thinking that he is magnifying himself, however, the vast majority of the time, his folly is all that is exalted. Let us all pray that we can remain in control of our emotions so that we can share the gospel and teach our brothers and sisters in a way that brings glory to Christ.
William Funkhouser MDiv, ThD, Founder and President of True Devotion Ministries.