The Duty of Rebuking the Wicked
Proverbs 24:25
But to them that rebuke him shall be delight, and a good blessing shall come on them.

I. THE DUTY AND ITS OBLIGATION. By "rebuke" we may understand either that friendly office exercised by private persons towards their trespassing brethren, with a design and hope of reclaiming them from their evil ways, or else that severer method of proceeding by public censures and legal punishments, inflicted by persons in authority, with the same charitable end in view. Private Christians have a call and authority sufficient to admonish and reprove, where it can be done prudently and seasonably. We must not think ourselves at liberty to suffer sin and wickedness, committed in our sight and hearing, to pass without correction. The aid of the civil magistrate may be needed for those who will not be reformed and reclaimed from an evil course by arguments fetched from another world, but may be forced into better manners by temporal punishments. When these punishments have no fitness in them to make men better, they are of great use to prevent their growing worse and more hardened in their sins. The infliction of legal penalties is also necessary to prevent the contagion of bad example, that the venom spread no further, to taint the sound members, and corrupt those who are well disposed.


1. Delight, or an inward joy and satisfaction, flowing from the testimony of a good conscience, which is the most agreeable of all comforts. The thought of good done lies easy in men's minds, and the reflection upon it doth ever after minister comfort and delight to them. The greatest good one man can possibly do another is to assist and further him in the way of salvation; to keep him within the lines of duty; and to reclaim him to a better course.

2. A good blessing. A just God will not let this labour of love pass without reward. He will consider it in proportion to the measure of good that is done by it, and the discouragements and difficulties with which it is usually attended. The good blessing includes the blessing of men. Every man who rebukes evil without fear or favour shall, for his integrity, wisdom, and courage, be had in universal esteem. A good magistrate is respected and honoured by those who have no great regard to religion, for reasons of state. How much more may such expect honour and veneration from those who are concerned for religion and the glory of God.

(John Waugh, D.D.)

Parallel Verses
KJV: But to them that rebuke him shall be delight, and a good blessing shall come upon them.

WEB: but it will go well with those who convict the guilty, and a rich blessing will come on them.

The Delight of the Rebuker of Evil
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