This section in Prov. 25-26 shows how to establish righteous leadership: be humble, do research, practice timely speech, achieve perceptive relationships, seek God's honor, reject foolish behavior and reject lies.
Be Humble and Do Research
It is a glory of kings to search out a matter and God's glory to conceal it. The hearts of kings are unsearchable. Removing the wicked from the king's presence to establish his throne in righteousness is like moving dross from silver. Do not claim a place among great men as it is better for the king to ask for you to come up than be humiliated before a nobleman (Prov. 25:1-7). Be humble and do research to remove evil and establish righteous leadership.
Practice Timely Speech
Consider what you bring to court so your neighbor does not shame you. Do not betray another man's confidence when you argue your case with a neighbor so you do not lose your good reputation. A word aptly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver. A wise man's rebuke to a listening ear is like an earring of gold. A trustworthy messenger refreshes his master's spirit like the coolness of snow at harvest time. A man who boast of gifts he does not give is like clouds without rain. A gentle tongue with patience can persuade a ruler and break a bone (Prov. 25:8-15). Say the right thing at the right time to increase persuasiveness and one's reputation among leaders.
Achieve Perceptive Relationships
Eating too much honey causes vomiting. Spending too much time in a neighbor's house causes him to hate you. Giving false testimony is like a sword. Relying on the unfaithful in times of trouble is like a bad tooth. Singing songs to a heavy heart is like one who takes away a garment on a cold day. Giving your enemy food and water when he is hungry and thirsty is heaping burning coals on his head that God rewards (Prov. 25:16-22). Take a counter-intuitive approach in relationships to reap good results.
Seek God's Honor
A sly tongue brings angry looks like a north wind bringing rain. Better to live on a corner of a roof than share a house with a quarrelsome wife. Good news from a distant land is like cold water to a weary soul. A righteous man who gives way to the wicked is like a polluted well. Seeking one's own honor is dishonorable like eating too much honey. A man lacking self-control is like a city whose walls are broken down (Prov. 25:23-28). Seek God's honor by living with self-control and not spend time pleasing people.
Reject Foolish Behavior
Honor is not fitting for a fool like snow in summer. An undeserved curse does not come to rest like a fluttering sparrow. A rod for the back of fools like a whip for a horse. You will be like a fool if you answer him according to his folly. A fool will not be wise in his own eyes if you answer as his folly deserves. Sending a message by the hand of a fool is like cutting off one's feet. A proverb in the mouth of a fool is like a lame's man legs. Giving honor to a fool is like tying a stone in a sling. He who hires a fool or any passer-by is like an archer who wounds at random. A fool repeats his folly like a dog returning to its vomit. A man wise in his own eyes is worse than a fool (Prov. 26:1-12). Reject foolish behavior of being wise in your own eyes.
A sluggard sees a fierce lion roaming the streets, stays in bed too long, lazy and wiser in his own eyes than seven men who answer discreetly. A passer-by who meddles in a quarrel not his own is like one seizing a dog by the ears. A man who deceives his neighbor saying he was only joking is like a madman shooting deadly arrows. A quarrel dies down without gossip or strife similar to a fire going out without wood. The words of a gossip go down to a man's inmost parts. Do not believe fervent and charming speech from an evil and deceitful heart filled with seven abominations. His malice may be concealed by deception but wickedness will be exposed in the assembly. A man falls into the pit he digs. A lying tongue hates those it hurts and flattery works ruin (Prov. 26:13-28). Reject laziness, gossiping, deception and lies to avoid ruin.
Consider the following checklist in establishing righteous leadership in your home, church or workplace and pick the one most applicable to you right now:
1. Be humble
2. Do research to remove evil
3. Say the right thing at the right time to increase persuasiveness and one's reputation among leaders
4. Take a counter-intuitive approach in relationships to reap good results
5. Seek God's honor by living with self-control and not spend time pleasing people
6. Reject foolish behavior of being wise in your own eyes
7. Reject laziness, gossiping, deception and lies to avoid ruin