The light of the righteous shines brightly,
but the lamp of the wicked goes out.
With pride comes only contention,
but wisdom is with the well-advised.
I’m a pretty easy going guy. I can get along with almost anyone. Almost. But there is one kind of person that I just can’t seem to get along with. And that is a proud/arrogant person. I don’t know what it is, but there is something in me that just struggles to even be in the same room with someone who is so full of themselves that when you step in the room, you choke on the aura they are putting off. I’m not perfect, and this has been something I’ve been trying to work on. But, as I’ve come to find out, pride is a very serious concern throughout the book of proverbs and the bible in general.
Today we see some of the reason I and others struggle with those who are proud and arrogant. “With pride comes contention…” With pride comes arguments and discord and strife. When someone is proud, they have a tendency to also be divisive. When someone is proud they don’t listen to others, and in fact are unwilling to listen to others because they know they have the only good ideas. And since no one else can offer anything, they stir up contention.
But, wisdom is the opposite. Those who are wise are well-advised. The wise know that counsel is a good thing. The wise know who to listen to and who to ignore. They know how much weight to give to each person’s words. They aren’t easily swayed by one person’s opinion, but are able to come to a conclusion based on the counsel of many in their lives. Those who are proud aren’t able to operate in this way because they can’t listen to the advice of others.
This is why their lamp will burn out. Their light is only powered by their own fuel. They are the only ones who can fill their lamp. So, their lamp will go out. However, the righteous will shine brightly because they are willing to receive the counsel of many others who are wise and righteous. The know not to listen to the advice of the proud person because his advice is always for his own benefit. His advice always comes slanted toward his own gain. He never offers advice that is in the best interest of the hearer. Instead his advice is always in his own best interest.
If it feels like your light is starting to get dim or about to go out, perhaps you need to repent of pride in your life and allow the counsel of the wise into your life. Who is allowed to fill your tank? If it is only you, today would be a great day to start looking for others who can speak truth into your life.