26 May 2004

interpret this verse

Proverbs 27
5 Open rebuke is better than secret love.


Tom said...

that is an interesting verse :) thanks for pointing it out. I'm not exactly sure what the intended meaning is, but what I got out of it was that if you truly love someone you will confront them, to keep silent isn't the most loving thing you could do ... if you love someone you want to see them move forward and overcome whatever is holding them back.

Thats just what I got out of it anyways :) interested to hear other views

Megan Joy said...

From my experience, Scripture interprets Scripture... so "open rebuke is better than concealed love" seems to relate to all the verses like:

Proverbs 13:24 "He who withholds his rod hates his son, But he who loves him disciplines him diligently."

Proverbs 29:15 "The rod and reproof give wisdom"

Hebrews 12:8 "But if you are without discipline, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate children and not sons."

Love makes you legitimate. Perhaps that verse is referring to the fact that true Godly love means helping the other person become more Christ-like, thus rebuke is a necessary part. And to refuse that part of God's command is to conceal our love for one another.

Interpretation of the word 'open' is crucial though... it seems to mean 'up-front' rather than 'public' b/c Paul def instructs us to go to the person in private before bringing it up anywhere else. So to avoid hiding our love, we're supposed to be honest with one another.

Proverbs 27:17 "Iron sharpens iron, So one man sharpens another."

sharon hill said...

Sometimes we consider rebuking to be a negative thing, but it can also be a form of love. Are we not often rebuked by our parents, our friends, G-d? It's scary, but is it not a good thing to be rebuked by G-d? To be made aware of what we're doing wrong? The trick is accepting the rebuke and correcting one's actions. An open rebuke given in love is better than letting a loved one fall by the wayside.

Is secret love then love at all?

Proverbs 17:10 "A rebuke goes deeper into one who has understanding than a hundred blows into a fool."

The Ken said...

I realise every comment so far has been about the merits of rebuke which I agree with. In fact, I really like Proverbs 15:31 which says,

"He who listens to a life-giving rebuke
will be at home among the wise." (NIV)

That said, however, I think Prov 27:5 is saying how bad hidden love is. I realise it could be read in the context of open rebuke being the lesser of two evils, i.e. "Faced with the decision to rebuke or hide your love, it's better to rebuke." I read it more like "You're hiding love? That's terrible! I'd rather have an open rebuke than that." Of course, I may just have that interpretation from the DC Talk song "Say the Words"

Michael said...

I would agree with all that everyone is saying.

"A fool spurns his father's discipline, but whoever heeds correction shows prudence." (Proverbs 15:5)

With this verse in mind, listen to this:

"Our fathers disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, that we may share in his holiness."

God loves us, however because of his love he disciplines us. Here on earth if child is displined by his father it is because he did something wrong. When we sin, God disciplines us because sin leads to death. He does this because he loves us.

So, in this context open rebuke is still showing love, but is much more useful then "secret" love.

Just some thoughts, God bless.

Anonymous said...

this is an interesting evolution of posts i think...one idea building on the next. first its a bombardment of posts talking about the merit of rebuke. this is the main meat, the message i think the author was getting across. very "old testiment". then a single post kinda opening the door showing how when interpreted to focus on the love aspect the phrase can take on a different meaning. the first few posts advocate that its much better to rebuke someone than to stay silent in your love for them. the dilemma is this, no one wants to do that! so then the fourth post aleviates the problem and shows how the verse could be read as a warning to all...to act and speak out to others you love and let them know how you feel. because you'd be better off rebuking them than doing nothing at all. both interpretations don't quite encompass the whole meaning. the last one wraps it up better. as far as christians go...this verse IS talking about love and its telling you not hide it...and in this instance its saying that if you love someone...you should look out for them. you should be a good friend, and you should tell them whats up when they are doin so hot. you should show them that you love them, don't be afraid, and don't be silent. the way the bible phrases it makes it sound all dramatic and what not. its talkin about simple "hey ur my friend and i'm gonna take care of you". i don't think the verse is at all talking about the kind of rebuke you have to give when you are a parent or some other kind of authority figure, ego usually takes care of any obsticles. i don't think any parent ever needed advice from the bible on how rebuke their child rather than keeping their love a "secret".