He that reproveth a scorner getteth to himself shame: and he that rebuketh a wicked man getteth himself a blot.
– Proverbs 9:7
Verses 7-12 give the two responses to wisdom’s invitation—the scorner’s response and the wise man’s response. Verses 7 & 8 speak of the scorner and verses 9-11 speak of the wise man. Verse 12 summarizes both. The scorner, or scoffer, is one of the foolish characters in Proverbs. The word means to mock or make mouths at. It captures the foolish character as a problem of attitude and not ability. They take “delight in their scorning” (Proverbs 1:22). Scorners despise correction (Proverbs 13:1) and thus do not find wisdom (Proverbs 14:6). Reproving and rebuking such only gains trouble and abuse for the effort. Scorners despise the corrector as much as the correction (Proverbs 15:12).