6 Minute Read + Scripture readings


Zechariah 10:1–11:17
Revelation 18:1-24
Psalm 146:1-10
Proverbs 30:33


Proverbs 30:33 (CSB): “For the churning of milk produces butter, and twisting a nose draws blood, and stirring up anger produces strife.”


In our Verse for Today, we see the beauty of the book of Proverbs. In order to share a nugget of wisdom, the truth that Solomon is trying to get across is compared to other things that would have been familiar to his readers.

Proverbs 30:33 (CSB): “For the churning of milk produces butter, and twisting a nose draws blood, and stirring up anger produces strife.”

While some other English translations use different words for each phrase, the words translated “churning,” “twisting,” and “stirring” in the Christian Standard Bible are all the same word in the Hebrew Old Testament. The same word is used all three times.

The “churning of milk produces butter” (or “cream” would be a better translation). My grandma had a butter churn that she obtained from her mom. My great-grandma must have used that churn to make cream and butter. She would have put milk into it and then thrust the plunger up and down. As she continually pressed and agitated that milk (along with some additives), it would have thickened. The “churning” caused the milk’s qualities to change.

It is also true that “twisting a nose draws blood.” I’ve never had the desire to squeeze and twist my nose to produce blood but my nose has certainly been hit and bumped a few times. On occasion, that’s all it took for me to get a nose-bleed. The “twisting” caused my nose to do something undesirable.

With these two word-pictures in mind, Solomon now makes his ultimate point: “stirring up anger produces strife.”

We all know what it’s like to be wronged. We know what it’s like for someone to say something unkind to us or to do something that was completely inappropriate. We also know how easy it is for us to get upset after such a scenario.

But, our Verse for Today paints a picture of someone who “presses their anger.” They stoke the fires. They feed that anger until it grows and grows. Just like milk and a nose will produce something very different when pressed, so does anger. It produces strife. It produces rifts in relationships. Maybe a relationship will even be severed. And all of this is because anger was allowed to be pressed.

Don’t do it! Don’t “press your anger.” Instead, do what Jesus has called us to do – love others. His message was consistent with the cry of the Old Testament…

Proverbs 10:12 (CSB): “Hatred stirs up conflicts, but love covers all offenses.”

So, what happens when love is pressed? It produces noble character. It works to mend relationships. It brings happiness to the heart. It pleases God. On and on the benefits go.

So, don’t let your anger fester. Ask God to enable you to love those who have mistreated you. Read 1 Corinthians 13 to understand what your love should look like. And then, after putting it into action, enjoy the benefits of following God’s wonderful commands.