King Saul gave his daughter Michal to David to be his wife. Laden with sarcasm, 2 Samuel 6:20b records but one incident of her lack of respect for her husband when she says to him, “How the king of Israel distinguished himself today!” Michal is illustrative of a contentious woman. Solomon, in fact, is quite repetitious (four times!) about a wife’s being contentious toward her husband—as if stating the actuality is insufficient: 

It is better to live in a corner of a roof than in a house shared with a contentious woman (Proverbs 21:9). 

It is better to live in a desert land than with a contentious and vexing woman (Proverbs 21:19). 

It is better to live in a corner of the roof than in a house shared with a contentious woman (Proverbs 25:24). 

A constant dripping on a day of steady rain and a contentious woman are alike; he who would restrain her restrains the wind, and grasps oil with his right hand (Proverbs 27:15–16). 

The Hebrew word for contentious (madon), which appears in each of these Proverbs, means “an often perverse and wearisome tendency to quarrel and dispute.” 

This woman is obstinate and argumentative, unrelenting in irritation. 

She plays really close to the net in conversational tennis. Avoid being or marrying such a one for the Solomonic reasons stated. And if you are such and name the name of Christ, you have no excuse and must stop such behaviour. Not only are you driving your husband crazy, but you’re hurting the corporate witness of the body of Christ! The antithesis of contentious found in 1 Timothy 2:11–13 teaches that godly women will be submissive to their husbands. Further, glean from this passage that the basis for a woman’s submission is rooted in the order of creation—meaning the principle is timeless, not cultural (as if this truth were not applicable in today’s society). Do not be contentious. 

Author: Godfrey Gregg

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