How do you get rid of strife and contention in a group? That is what God wants us to be instructed in today in Proverbs. He is about to tell us about the horrific fellow known as the "scoffer." Wherever this man is - there is trouble and strife about to break loose. When we learn how to identify and rid ourselves of him and his ilk, we will find that the dishonor and disunity will go away as well.
The word scoffer refers to someone who loves to mock, scorn, deride with great contempt to anyone but himself. The scoffer loves to express his utter contempt with someone with whom he disagrees. He knows nothing of positive criticism - he only knows of mocking and seeking to scorn his enemies. It is not enough for him to merely disagree - he must do it in the most disagreeable way possible! He knows only how to show complete and absolute contempt toward those he finds in his philosophical crosshairs.
A wise man knows that mocking his detractors will usually yield him some serious enemies. Very rarely does this tactic yield converts to his way of thinking. Heaping a mocking shame and disgrace on others is not a positive way to communicate a message which you desire to use to change someone's mind and thinking. But that is what the scoffer excells at in life. As a result when he comes around you will also find contention, strife, and dishonor. He will use his words to strike up fights among people. He loves to fight - and loves to accelerate an argument to the point of intense strife. He also loves to see dishonor come to his opponents. He cares little what happens to the organization in which he is wreaking his havoc. He only cares for his own ungodly thoughts and desires. The more damage he can render to his opponents - the better he sees the outcome of his actions.
There is one response to such a man - get him out! Scripture says that we are to "drive out" this kind of man. Too often we want to try to win him over to our way of thinking. That is NOT going to happen - because he is un-winnable while he is a scoffer. The New Testament tells us to reject a factious man after a warning. We are not to have a three strikes policy with such dangerous men. Get their contention-stimulating behavior and conversation thrown out of the assembly of God's people. This man knows nothing about how to walk in unity with others. He only airs his own opinions and contentious thoughts. He cares nothing for those of others. The best thing we can offer him - is the way out. This may sound hard - but when dealing with a scoffer, you are not dealing with someone who can be won over. Therefore the best thing to do is to follow the godly advice of Solomon - drive him out!