Proverbs 27:5 states “Open rebuke is better than secret love.” This passage of scripture caught my interest, but I’m not sure why. What does it mean.
Looking at the footnote it has a reference to Proverbs 28:3 which states, “He that rebuketh a man afterwards shall find more favour than he that flattereth with the tongue.”
After pondering these scriptures for a while, I started to think of times that I may have heard someone talk badly about someone or something. How many of those times would I simply let them talk and criticize and scorn such things. How long would I allow a contentious attitude. Even worst than this, how many times might I join in with my own criticisms and support them in their complains and talk bad about others. I find that I often do this to avoid contention myself and to gain favor in the eyes of those I’m with. It could be a friend or a spouse or even an aquaintance.
How much better would it be to stand up and defend a person or thing. Even if you don’t have to courage to do so, how much better is it to silently show you dissapproval at such talk. Could this be what this scripture might mean?
5 thoughts on “Open Rebuke, Secret Love”
I appreciate your thought here. I guess in a way well intentioned rebuke might be a form of love. And love unexpressed is simply ignoring someone.
Yes! I like that. “unexpressed love is simply ignoring someone.”
I always feel bad when my wife has to ask “Do you love me?”
Also, as far as communication goes in marriage, would it be better to express your feelings and “rebuke” when necessary rather than avoiding such topics as not to hurt the other persons feelings because of love?
Ask your wife how she wants you to handle things. She is always right :).
Maybe it’s like that verse that says that whom the Father loves, he rebukes. So I guess like you said, it’s better to love someone and correct them when necessary rather than not saying anything because you’re afraid to hurt their feelings.
Assertiveness plays a very vital role in any relationship. It is a POSITIVE EXPRESSION of (negative included) thoughts and feelings, of oneself to another. I equate “rebuke” to tough love which intention is to build the person..constructive criticism. A person who truly loves is concerned with the other person’s growth. LOVE is a verb, an action word. If hidden, then love isn’t LOVE.
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