Today (02/16/2020) I taught my Bible class at the Sunset Church of Christ. We are studying from a guide by Scott Franks called, Practical Proverbs. This is a lesson on “Quarreling.” Last month I taught on “Gossip,” and reproduced that outline earlier here.  Below I have reproduced the handout I provided for the class today.


Dissension, Strife and Quarreling

INTRODUCTION:

  1. Remember what “wisdom” means in the Book of Proverbs: “Seeing life as God sees it and then living out our life in a way that honors and glorifies Him.”
  2. We notice that several of the other topics in Proverbs may be connected to, or else lead to, strife: wrong use of the tongue, money, inappropriate sexual relationships, honesty, friendships, and anger.

DISSENSION, STRIFE AND QUARRELING IN PROVERBS:

  1. Numerous passages specifically mention strife and quarreling, including: Proverbs 13:10; 15:18; 17:1,14,19; 18:6; 20:3; 21:9,19; 26:17,20-21; 27:15.
  2. Some of the words used include quarreling, strife, dissension, bickering, disagreements, arguing.
  3. Four different Hebrew words used in Proverbs having to do with quarreling:
    1. Mawdon (H4066) – strife, contention
    2. Riyb (H7379) – adversary, controversy, plead case
    3. Matstsah (H4683) – strife, contention
    4. Gawlah (H1566) – to be obstinate, meddle, lay bare, quarrel
  4. Dissension and quarreling can run the spectrum from just sharp or unkind words all the way to shouting matches and even physical violence.
  5. Think of some common areas this takes place – between children, in marriages, between friends, among co-workers, sports fans, politics, and in THE CHURCH!
  6. A few well-known examples in Scripture of strife and conflict:
    1. Leah and Rachel – Genesis 29:31 – 30:24
    2. Jeremiah and Israel – Jeremiah 15:10
    3. Disciples of Jesus – Mark 9:33-37; Luke 9:46; 22:24
    4. Paul and Barnabas – Acts 15:36-39
    5. Euodia and Synteche – Philippians 4:2-3

CAUSES AND CONSEQUENCES OF QUARRELS AND STRIFE:

  1. Think of some things that cause arguments and conflicts.
  2. Here are a few things Proverbs identifies:
    1. Hot temper – 15:18
    2. “Love to quarrel” – 17:19
    3. Being a “fool” (i.e., not using “wisdom”) – 18:6; 20:3
    4. Harsh or ill-advised words – 15:1; 20:3
    5. Pride – 13:10
  3. James 4:1-10 – coveting, jealousy
  4. Consequences:
    1. Like breaking a dam with damaging longterm consequences – 17:14
    2. Miserable homelife – 21:9,19
    3. Sin – 17:19
    4. Possibly physical violence – 18:6

THE CURE FOR QUARRELS AND DISSENSION:

  1. A soft (careful, appropriate) answer – 15:1
  2. Patience – 15:18
  3. Avoidance – 2 Timothy 2:23-26
  4. Don’t feed the fire – 26:20-21
  5. Deal with the divisive spirit – Titus 3:9-11

CONCLUSION: CHOOSE CHRIST’S PATH:

  1. Ephesians 4:29-5:2
  2. Colossians 3:8-17 – the “peace of Christ” is to “rule” (brabeuo – arbitrate, umpire, referee) in our hearts. Romans 12:17-18
  3. I must love others more than I love to win an argument, prove I’m right, or get my way!
  4. I need to love the Lord’s Church more than I love my own opinion or preference. He died for His Church, but not for my opinion!

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