Proverbs 14:6-11 contains several warnings of the danger of associating with fools.
Verse 6--A scoffer seeks wisdom in vain,
but knowledge is easy for one who understands.
Verse 7--Leave the presence of a fool,
for there you do not find words of knowledge.
Verse 8--It is the wisdom of the clever to understand where they go,
but the folly of fools misleads.
Verse 9--Fools mock at the guilt offering,
but the upright enjoy God's favor.
Verse 10--The heart knows its own bitterness,
and no stranger shares its joy.
Verse 11--The house of the wicked is destroyed,
but the tent of the upright flourishes.
What lessons can we learn from these wise sayings?
1. A scoffer is arrogant and self-opinionated. He/She is always right, and others are always wrong. The wise is open to other ideas, and thus constantly grows in knowledge. But the fool closes his/her mind to any ideas other than his/her own.
2. Those with whom we associate have a great influence on our thinking, speech, and actions. Therefore, we must learn to avoid the company of fools (see Proverbs 13:20; 22:24-25; 23:20; 28:7). 1 Corinthians 15:33 says: "Do not be deceived; 'Bad company ruins good morals.'"
3. Fools think they are above confessing sins and seeking God's forgiveness. After all, others are as sinful or more sinful than they are. But the upright recognize their sinful ways, confess their sins to God, repent, and seek God's grace.
4. Although a person can share joy and sorrow with others (Romans 12:15; 1 Corinthians 12:26), it is impossible for one person to share the depth of joy or sorrow that another person feels.
5. God is loving and patient and forgiving. But if an individual manifests no intention of living for God, ultimately God will punish that person; and if a person persists in faithfulness to God, God will bless that person a hundredfold.