Real Men Never Argue
If you’re like me, you probably don’t need to be taught how to argue. I perfected the craft on my little sister and haven’t looked back since.
But it’s probably safe to say most of us never learned the right way to argue. Without biblical influence, our natural selves will gravitate to sinful self-focus, because “good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature” (Rom. 7:18).
The world is full of chronic arguers
Do you know men or boys that actually enjoy disagreeing with people? They epitomize “every fool is quick to quarrel” (Prov. 20:3).
The problem is these guys are everywhere in our lives, both in the church and out. They lead families, companies, sports teams, churches and government. Though they may be Christians, they love to “sharpen iron” as much as possible (Prov. 27:17).
Before our sons naturally fall into the world’s way of arguing, let’s use Scripture to teach them how to differ with people the right way.
Proverbs on how to argue
Let’s look at some principles of argumentation from the book of Proverbs:
- First, diffuse anger. “An angry man stirs up dissension, and a hot-tempered one commits many sins” (Prov. 29:22).
- Cut off arguments before they escalate. “To start a conflict is to release a flood; stop the dispute before it breaks out” (Prov. 17:14).
- If you can’t calm someone down, quit trying. “A person with great anger bears the penalty; if you rescue him, you’ll have to do it again” (Prov. 19:19).
- Seek to limit everyone’s words (including your own.) “Do you see a man who speaks too soon? There is more hope for a fool than for him” (Prov. 29:20). “When words are many, sin is not absent, but he who holds his tongue is wise” (Prov. 10:19).
- Remember that reconciliation revives and energizes people. “The tongue that heals is a tree of life, but a devious (deceitful) tongue breaks the spirit” (Prov. 15:4).
Many more verses throughout the Bible deal with conflict, but the main thing to get across to our sons is this: Read Proverbs. It’s full of practical advice on dealing with people.
If you find yourself in an argument that’s getting out of hand, or you feel like your opponent is backing you into a corner, remember this above all else:
- To win an argument, be quiet. “Even a fool is considered wise when he keeps silent, discerning, when he seals his lips” (Prov. 17:28).
Real men go quiet! When our words are weighed, they’re way more influential.
Real men sharpen their tongues with the Word of God.
The more we read the Bible, the more our minds and mouths reflect the way Jesus thought and talked.
Like Jesus, let’s resolve to not win arguments, but souls.
By Tom Harper|June 30th, 2014
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