Proverbs 21:24

Proud Wrath

The Man who Deals in Proud Wrath

A. The Terms Used

1. Proud

a. Strong’s: pride, insolence, presumptuousness, arrogance.

b. Dictionary of Biblical Languages: the concept of an inflated view of oneself, self-willed and not humble, as a moral failure; scorn, lack of respect,

c. Zodhiates: Presumptuous pride.

d. Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament: A sense of self-importance, which often is exaggerated to include defiance and even rebelliousness.

e. This term for pride is often associated with presumption.
• The two concepts are related.
• Because of a man’s pride, he presumes too much in his own favor.

f. Usages:
• Obadiah 1:3 – The pride of the Edomites who wrongly presumed that they had a safe place in the cliffs. This was due to an inflated view of themselves and the security they provided for themselves.
• Deut 18:20; cf. v. 22 – A false prophet is one who speaks presumptuously because of PRIDE.
• Deut 1:43 – This proud presumption is also associated with rebellion.
• Ps. 119:78,122 – The proud are also seen opposing God and God’s people.

2. Wrath

a. Strong’s: excess, fury, wrath, arrogance, outburst of rage

b. Dictionary of Biblical Languages – A state of intense displeasure, implying outbursts as actions of anger.

3. Solomon is describing a man, a proud man who, because of his pride, is given to outbursts of rage and anger.

a. This man would be a good candidate for a series of classes in anger management.

b. We all know people like this. They blow up easily. At the slightest insult or rebuke and they let off steam. They are volcanoes just waiting to explode at the slightest tremor.

4. The man Solomon describes DEALS with this behavior.

a. Deal:
• Strong’s: fashions; makes; prepares; maintains
• Dictionary of Biblical Languages: Do; cause; make; bring about a state or event; to behave or to conduct oneself in a particular way.
• It speaks of a lifestyle; one’s daily practice; a way of life.

b. The point is that this is more than just an occasional failure.
• We ALL lose our tempers on occasion.
• We have all blown up at one time or another. Perhaps many times over a period of years.
• But Solomon is not talking about someone who has a normal struggle with anger.
• The man he describes here has a REAL problem with anger… with proud wrath.
• He DEALS with proud anger. He conducts his life this way. It is part of his lifestyle. It is how he deals with anyone or anything that crosses him.
• If you do something he doesn’t like, you will experience his proud wrath.

c. Prov. 13:10 – This kind of proud wrath continually leads to contention. This man LIVES in the midst of contention because he brings it with him everywhere he goes.
• We all know this man—we’ve all met this type.
• Sometimes we get angry back at them. In reality, we should rather PITY them. They are pitiful, wretched, unhappy creatures.
• They are constantly losing their friends and their jobs. Because they have no control over their anger, they blow up at everyone. Theirs is an equal opportunity wrath. They blow up at enemies and friends. They blow at the policeman who dares to stop them for speeding. They blow up at the teacher who has the audacity to call them on their behavior. They blow up at their boss… and the president of the company.
• It’s not a happy life they live.
• At the root of it all is PRIDE.

d. Prov. 25:28 – I’m sure the psychologists have a fancy name for this syndrome or disorder.
• The Bible simply says that this man has no control over his spirit.
• This man is a slave to his proud wrath. This is an ongoing issue with him.
• It is really kind of a pitiful condition to be in. It makes for a very miserable life.



1. After describing this “syndrome,” Solomon gives it three “names.”

2. Psychologists may refer to this as disorder, making it a medical issue that often requires medication.

3. The Bible describes it differently—with three terms describing three different SINS.

A. Proud

1. This term is in the same family of words as the word “proud” in the second part of the proverb.

2. It means: Arrogant; proud; insolent; presumptuous.

3. Perhaps it is repeated to emphasize the point: Behind these outbursts of wrath and anger is deep-seated, entrenched PRIDE.

4. Prov. 11:2 – When this kind of pride comes, it is inevitably followed by shame.

a. The man with no control of his spirit blows up easily.

b. Initially, it feels good to blow up and let others have it… to get it off your chest.

c. It only takes a few seconds to blow up.

d. However, the ripples of that outburst go on and on and on.

e. And living with the ripples brings shame.

f. He may be ashamed of his uncontrolled spirit.

g. He may be ashamed of treating others so cruelly.

h. He may be ashamed of making such a fool of himself.

i. He may be ashamed of burning all his bridges behind him.

j. He may be ashamed of losing so many friends.

k. He may be ashamed of causing so much contention.

l. He may be ashamed of all the messes he’s left behind.

5. Yes, we can call this man PROUD.

B. Haughty

1. Defined:

a. Strong’s: Proud; arrogant; haughty.

b. Dictionary of Biblical Languages: Pertaining to being proud and high-minded, as a moral failure.

c. Zodhiates: It is used to define a person who is insolent, prideful, and narcissistically self-centered.

d. A haughty person believes he is the greatest and that the world revolves around him… or at least that it should, if it were functioning properly.

e. For this man, life is able about me, myself, and I. Those are his three best friends. (Usually his only friends!)

2. I John 2:16 – Haughty is what John describes as the “pride of life.” It does not originate from the Father, but rather finds its source in the fallen, sinful, proud heart of man.

C. Scorner

1. Defined:

a. Strong’s: To scorn; make mouths at; talk arrogantly; mock.

b. Dictionary of Biblical Languages: Talk big; i.e., speak words which show no respect for the object or person.

c. To express contempt for…

d. Mocking is also related to pride and arrogance. It indicates that the person mocking feels superior to those he mocks.

e. Prov.16:5 – Every one that is proud in heart is an abomination to the LORD.

f. This is not an innocent disorder that the man caught… as one might catch a cold. This is SIN which God hates.

2. Usage:

a. Prov. 3:34 – God Himself scorns the scorners. God will mock them! God will show disrespect to them. Sooner or later, they will get a taste of their own medicine…

b. Prov. 9:8 – It is pointless to reprove a scorner and try to talk sense to him. He will simply hate you. He can’t handle anything negative directed towards himself—even though he has no problem blowing up towards others and mocking them.

c. Prov. 9:12 – If you scorn, you will BEAR it. You will have to bear the consequences of your ungodly behavior. You can’t just talk arrogantly against others and expect no repercussions!

d. Prov. 19:29 – Judgments are prepared for scorners.

e. Prov. 22:10 – What’s the best way to deal with an irascible, unrepentant scorner?
• Cast him out! Tough love is required with this “syndrome.”
• Why so harsh? Because he won’t listen.
• The only thing this person will listen to is having to deal with the pain and suffering that he brings on himself.
• Don’t coddle him. Don’t bail him out. Cast him out.
• That’s God’s cure for this disorder.

3. Solomon’s MAIN point in this proverb is this: beware of this kind of mocking, scorning, arrogant, haughty pride.

a. It leads to explosive behavior… proud wrath… a lack of control over one’s spirit… and this “syndrome” and its ripples, you may have to DEAL WITH the rest of your life!

b. Men who deal with proud wrath get a very bad name… a bad reputation as a proud and haughty scorner, and that follows him everywhere. The name is well deserved.

4. The way of victory is not Prozac or valium… or a 12 step program.

5. The way of victory is the filling of the Holy Spirit which results in the FRUIT of the Spirit, namely, temperance: self control.