To Sharpen Others, We Must Be Sharpened

“As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.”

Proverbs 27:17

King Solomon imparts his wisdom to make youths’ naive nature wise and wise men even wiser in the book of Psalms. In the depths of his knowledge, given to him by God, Solomon shared, “As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another” (Pro. 27:17). The context of those few words is rich in wisdom, for they speak directly to the interaction of human relations; how we are to interrelate with one another. The people with whom we interact contribute to the shaping of our character, especially in our youth, and as we continue to grow and age.

The global society has lost the capacity to listen to one another. It has become more polarized than ever, with many people driven by hatred for others who disagree with their opinions. The ongoing was in Ukraine is a prime example of one side unwilling to listen to the other. Bitterness and hatred serves as the motivating force, just as it does around the globe, perpetuated by Satan and his demons lurking in the shadows and behind the scenes.

The good news is this: Jesus said, “In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world.” Therefore, as followers of Jesus Christ, we should expect such behavior in a fallen, sin-plagued world, but we should never see it in the church. If everyone in a church only desired to sharpen others but never be sharpened themselves, such a congregation will stagnate in its spiritual growth and become an ineffective in ministry and reaching the lost.

I am truly thankful for those who have sharpened and helped to hone my understanding of Scripture so I could grow closer to God with each passing day. Therefore, as we set out each day, let us always seek opportunities to sharpen other believers and allow other believers to sharpen us. Doing so works to keep the church anchored to God’s word and faithful to heed and keep His instructions. It will enable the church, as a whole, to reach greater depths in spiritual growth and become a mighty tool in God’s hand.

So, whom will you sharpen today, and perhaps more importantly, whom will you allow to sharpen you?

Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture is taken from the New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.

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