1 Dead flies putrefy the perfumer’s ointment,
And cause it to give off a foul odor;
So does a little folly to one respected for wisdom and honor.
(Ecclesiastes 10:1, New King James Version)
A Little Folly
What is in a name? Solomon says in Proverbs that a good name is better than great riches. How easy is it to keep a good name or a good reputation? It only takes one dead fly to putrefy the perfumer's ointment, and unfortunately, it only takes one misdeed or misjudgment to ruin a person's good name.
Why is that? It seems as though we are a people who, first of all, do not honor a good name as we should, and second, are too quick to believe the worst in others. Evil tidings of another person, whether true or not, spread like a vicious wildfire caught in a strong wind. When the fire is over, all that is left is charred remains of a once beautiful forest. Even though the person may have been completely innocent, the scars will remain forever.
What about the honorable person who did putrefy the ointment through his misdeeds? As Christians, we should think very carefully of this. People of the world watch believers, and are very quick to challenge any misdeed we may do. As a matter of fact, they are looking for excuses to condemn Christianity.
We are not in an easy position; we are people, too, with sin natures that tempt us daily. Therefore, of all people, we should be most patient and understanding of our fellow believers. When a believer gets caught in a snare, do we bring a rope to hang him, or a rope to pull him out of the lake? We must remember, "There, but for God's grace, go I."
So, let us first of all pray that God would keep us from a little folly, and secondly let us pray for love, grace, and forgiveness for our fellow believers in Christ.
God Bless You,