“Whoever rebukes a man will afterward find more favor than he who flatters with his tongue.”
Think about it: why do we flatter people?
Instead of telling them the truth, we lie about what we really think.
Why do we lie?
Because we want their favor.
If we didn’t care about gaining their favor, we wouldn’t lie (flatter). We would just say it like it is (with love, of course).
Wisdom, however, tells us that it is actually the opposite that is true.
Rebuking someone (confronting someone with the truth) will gain you more favor than flattery.
True love isn’t flattery. True love is truth-telling. Flattery gets you through the moment in peace. Flattery gets you favor for another minute or two. But flattery isn’t love. If you think about it, it is hatred for them and love for yourself disguised as love for them. Often we confuse flattery with love for the sake of “respecting everybody.”
Lovingly confronting someone with the truth (rebuke) is genuine love.
It may cause you to lose favor for the moment.
But the Proverb says it will “afterward” bring you favor.
It will do us (or them!) no good at all to flatter someone. It will not bring long term favor and will only delay the inevitable. You will only continue flattering (lying) and they will continue to be blind to the truth.
Can you find one place in the Gospels where Jesus flattered? Nope.
Why? Because He genuinely loves.
And talk about favor? One day, every knee will bow.
STOP: Who in your life needs to be loved with the truth today?