The Pleasure of Pyromaniacs

Michael Beck

“As coals are to burning coals, and wood to fire; so is a contentious man to kindle strife.” (Proverbs 26:21)

The cry of so many today is “Burn it down!” Some people get a kick out of starting fires. They are called pyromaniacs. They have a lust to destroy. There are also spiritual arsonists. Their hearts are filled with rage, hatred, and pride. With their mouths they love to pit one against another. They enjoy conflict and war. They lack peace and they don’t like to see others enjoying it. The world that they see is not the world that they want.

They are embittered and angry over things as they are. They don’t know how to change the present order or build a better world, so they deem the next best thing is to simply tear down. If they can stir up others to do the same they are happy. They are known for who and what they are “against,” and there is a whole lot they see that they don’t like.

We must keep our heart with all diligence or we will become a stumblingblock to others. We will be a sower of discord. We will stir up unnecessary strife and contention. Will we be perfect men? Then we will seek peace and pursue it. We will not fret or stir ourselves up with anger because of what we behold. (Psalm 37:1) We must let God put out the fire in our own hearts, if we are to be His children in the world. He calls us to be peacemakers, not trouble-makers.

“Hatred stirreth up strifes: but love covereth all sins.” (Proverbs 10:12)

“He that is of a proud heart stirreth up strife: but he that putteth his trust in the LORD shall be made fat.” (Proverbs 28:25)

“An angry man stirreth up strife, and a furious man aboundeth in transgression.” (Proverbs 29:22)

“A wrathful man stirreth up strife: but he that is slow to anger appeaseth strife.” (Proverbs 15:18)

Michael Beck is a pastor in the Dallas, TX area and the main author on Signpost. Receive a daily devotional he publishes every morning via email.