Do not associate with a man given to anger; Or go with a hot-tempered man, Or you will learn his ways And find a snare for yourself. ESV
As I read this Proverb, I expect it to read: Don't associate with angry people, or you might get burned." But alas, Proverbs thinks less of my own innocent nature than I do. Proverbs refuses to trust me with friends I cannot handle. Rather than getting "burned" by an angry person, Proverbs warns me that I may "catch fire" myself.
I like how Matthew Henry puts it:
"Our corrupt hearts have so much tinder in them that it is dangerous conversing with those that throw about the sparks of their passion."
I want to keep my ears open for angry vitriol, bitter talk, and other forms of malice - even online. I want to guard my heart, and I want to take care who and what I allow to influence my thinking. If I don't want to be an angry person, Proverbs says, I should not "go with a hot-tempered man."
Indeed, we become like our friends; choose wisely.
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