Proverbs 26:4&5

Do not answer a fool according to his folly, or you will be like him. Answer a fool as his folly deserves, That he may not be wise in his own eyes, NASB

The word “deserves” in this text is italicized which means the word is not in the original text but was added by the translators to aid understanding.

Those in leadership may find themselves dealing with fools, their behavior, and attitudes.

Verse 5 tells us these must be addressed but the leader is to set a standard which must be based on wisdom and knowledge. The fool’s folly must be addressed but not with folly.

The leader must understand that to address folly with folly is to validate the fool and his folly which is counter to the goal of discipline bringing correction.

There are many examples of fools and foolishness in this chapter, laziness, deception, lying, gossiping, and meddling. A good leader must be able to identify these and deal with them appropriately and not be influenced by them.