Whoever corrects a scoffer gets himself abuse, and he who reproves a wicked man incurs injury. Do not reprove a scoffer, or he will hate you; reprove a wise man, and he will love you.
─ Proverbs 9:7-8 ESV
Todd Wagner, senior pastor at Watermark Community Church in Dallas said, “Truth sounds like hate to those who hate truth.”
This is confirmed by our verse today. Nothing good comes from correcting a scoffer, or someone who jeers, mocks or treats someone or something with contempt. Abuse is the only result. And if you censure a wicked man, you could also suffer injury.
But if you reprimand a wise man, he will love you for it. No one wants to receive criticism, but everyone can benefit from it when it’s given with wisdom and received humbly.
So, if you want to be a wise man, you want to know how to handle criticism.
Four keys to accepting criticism (Psalm 141:5):
- Be willing to accept it; hear the person out.
- Consider it an act of kindness.
- Keep quiet; don’t defend yourself or make excuses.
- Ask the Holy Spirit to show you how you can use this new knowledge to your benefit.
Today’s One Thing
Think about the last time you were criticized. Was there some truth to the words that were spoken to you? Look at the four keys above. Read Psalm 141:5. Pray about it and ask God to reveal truth to you today.