so drop the matter before a dispute breaks out.
whoever builds a high gate invites destruction.
I love how verse 14 says to drop the matter. It seems so simplistic, “so drop the matter before a dispute breaks out.” The verse after this one says that God hates for the guilty to be acquitted, so it seems clear that God isn’t speaking of just letting other people do bad things to you all the time. It seems to me He is speaking of those silly useless quarrels, which we all have, over trivial things.
Ever fight with your spouse of toothpaste? Or who had to get up and turn the light off last night? Those quarrels, bickering silliness, truly can be like breaching a dam. Suppressing those feelings of frustration is just as bad, as that is what causes the dam that is breached to be so damaging.
No, God doesn’t want us to be victims. And he doesn’t want us to hold back years of frustration to pour forth upon the unsuspecting loved one when we can hold the dam no longer. He does want us to “drop the matter”. Drop does not imply hide, it means let it go. Stop making it an issue. So many little issues between my kids would not exist if they chose to drop them, let them go. They wouldn’t even care in five minutes.
The same is true for many marriages. Many marriages are lost of trifles.
Verse 19 relates to verse 14. “Whoever loves a quarrel loves sin”. Some of you think, “Who would love a quarrel?” But a few of you out there are like me, or like I used to be. You deep down love a good argument. It gets your blood pumping, adrenaline flowing. It leaves you feeling quite satisfied, dare I say – proud. But God says loving quarrels means loving sin. That’s harsh. Or is it? God clearly shows us in His word that quarreling isn’t what He has in mind for His children. We need to seek first His will, His kingdom. Or we are first seeking the world and sin.
God made provisions for what his people should do should a dispute arise. Clearly He knew we would have disagreements and miscommunications, as fallible humans. We can see from His love and care that He has ways to settle these disputes and issues, therefore when He tells us not to quarrel but rather let it drop, we can trust that He knows what is best for us and understands the difference between a need for justice and a selfish need to be right.