Like a sparrow in its flitting, like a swallow in its flying, a curse that is causeless does not alight.
Have you ever been in the presence of someone with power who seeks to angrily intimidate you for something of which you were fully innocent? It is a frightening experience and leaves one helpless before the other. Nothing one can say or do will ever change the mind of the accuser.
This proverb complements the thought in verse one that “honor is not appropriate for a fool.” If given this honor, the foolish one uses his position against all whom he is upset with, often cursing them and trying to keep them in awe of him. This is no less than wickedness, but it also reveals the very weakenness/insecurity of the fool. He may have the wrong person and/or his concerns may be unfounded. Even so, there is a way to resolve matters of difference between the two.
Proverbs, too, gives hope to the innocent. Just as there is no danger in a bird flying over one’s head, so the curses of a fool will create no harm in the long run. Remember the futile curses of Goliath upon David (I Samuel 17:43). They got nowhere, just as the sparrow goes where we don’t know but oftens returns, not to rest on the head of the innocent one, but on the head of the accuser.
As Oliver Cromwell once said, “Trust in God and keep your powder dry.” Live you life before the Lord and he will defend you. Do not fear the angry and boisterous fool who would seek to belittle you. He will have his day in court before the judge of the universe.
© 2022 Tenth Presbyterian Church.
Permissions: You are permitted and encouraged to reproduce and distribute this material in its entirety or in unaltered excerpts, as long as you do not charge a fee. For Internet posting, please use only unaltered excerpts (not the content in its entirety) and provide a hyperlink to this page. Any exceptions to the above must be approved by Tenth Presbyterian Church.
Please include the following statement on any distributed copy: By George McFarland. © 2022 Tenth Presbyterian Church. Website: tenth.org