“As vinegar to the teeth
and smoke to the eyes,
So is the sluggard to those
Who send him ” (Proverbs 10:26).
Nothing can set one’s teeth on edge more than vinegar, and few things are as irritating to the eyes as smoke blowing directly into them. So it is, the writer says, with a lazy, irresponsible person who is sent to do a job but doesn’t do it.
Calling him a sluggard, Solomon points out how annoying it is to the sender, implying the sluggard leaves in his wake unfinished jobs or unfinished business for someone else to take care of.
In Christ, the scriptures leave no room for such a person, whether he be an evangelist, an elder, or just a member of a congregation. Individual industry is not only encouraged but commanded. We are told to be “workers with the Lord” in whatever tasks we have before us.