Together in Christ: 'Short Fuses and Devious Schemes' — Proverbs 14:17

Thursday, August 3, 2023

A quick-tempered person does foolish things, and the one who devises evil schemes is hated.
— Proverbs 14:17 NLT

Key Thought

We have seen warnings similar to our verse today in previous devotionals. One that immediately comes to my mind is from James, the half-brother of Jesus:

Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry. Human anger does not produce the righteousness God desires. So get rid of all the filth and evil in your lives, and humbly accept the word God has planted in your hearts, for it has the power to save your souls. [1]

I love that James reminds us that human anger does not produce what God desires in us. We must get rid of the moral filth and evil in our lives to stop this flow of anger-producing sin from entering our hearts. Our proverb adds a truth we know from other Scripture; anger leads to foolish and hurtful behaviors and gives rise to evil schemes. [2] When our lives become marked by these practices, we begin to isolate ourselves from others and become more and more controlled by the evil one and his schemes. [3]

As followers of Jesus, we must guard against having an evil and unbelieving heart that leads our hearts away from God. [4] We cannot excuse our anger because it is in our family heritage, personality type, or racial or social background. Anger is destructive and ungodly. We must address it on two levels.

  • We sincerely apologize and ask for the forgiveness of those we have wounded. [5]
  • We address the root causes of our anger with the help of the Holy Spirit's transforming power. [6]

With the help of the Spirit, the love of Jesus, and the power of God, we can achieve our freedom from the enslaving power of anger and find ourselves becoming more and more like Jesus! [7]

[1] James 1:19-21.
[2] Psalm 26:9-11; Proverbs 12:16; Isaiah 32:5-8.
[3] Ephesians 4:25-32.
[4] Hebrews 3:12-14.
[5] Matthew 5:21-24.
[6] John 7:37-39; Galatians 5:23-23.
[7] 2 Corinthians 3:17-18.

Today's Prayer

Almighty God, I do not want anger to corrupt me, lead me down evil paths, and wound those I love. Please cleanse my heart, O, Spirit of the living God, and make it new as You give me freedom from my bondage to anger and evil scheming and recreate me to be evermore like Jesus each day. In His name, I pray. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • James 1:19-26
  • Titus 1:7, 3:3-7; Proverbs 12:16

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Illustration

Illustration of Proverbs 14:17 NLT — A quick-tempered person does foolish things, and the one who devises evil schemes is hated.

About This Devotional

Together in Christ is a daily devotional that focuses on what Scripture teaches about godly living in relationships.

'Together in Christ' is written by Phil Ware.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.