Why study the Proverbs?
The first few verses answer that
The proverbs of Solomon son of David,
king of Israel:
for gaining wisdom and instruction;
for understanding words of insight;
for receiving instruction in prudent
doing what is right and just and fair;
for giving prudence to those who are
knowledge and discretion to the young—
let the wise listen and add to their
and let the discerning get guidance—
for understanding proverbs and
the sayings and riddles of the wise.
· Understanding insight
· Instruction on prudent behavior
· Instruction on doing what is right and just
· Prudence—not just instruction but prudence
· Knowledge and discretion
· More wisdom and learning
· God’s guidance
· Understanding wisdom literature
This brings us to what I will call a
golden nugget. It’s Proverbs
The fear of the Lord is the beginning
but fools despise wisdom and instruction.
We must understand that there is a
right way to live! The world will tell
you that everyone sorts out what is right and wrong for themselves. The world in wrong. Woke America is wrong.
God decides what is right and wrong
and he has given us wisdom to understand his ways. We must desire God’s ways. The Proverbs help us do that.
To understand this proverb, we must
understand the parallelism of much of Hebrew literature. The two phrases describe God’s wisdom in
terms of those seeking God and those denying God. Thus, God’s people fear the Lord, desire
knowledge, wisdom, instruction, and in some translations, discipline.
Those who reject God do not fear him
and do not seek his knowledge, wisdom, instruction, or discipline.
From the beginning, Solomon tells us
there is God’s way and there is everything else. Blessings lie in God’s way and
destruction in the everything else.
There is God’s way and there is everything
I’m not going to cram 9 weeks of
reading and study into a few minutes, so we will jump to the next golden
nugget. It’s Proverbs
3:5-6. Many know this
by heart. Trust in the Lord…
There is a lot packed into this
verse. It uses the parallelism that you
will come to know well.
First trust in the Lord with
everything that you have and you are.
It’s an all in sort of deal. That’s what we are charged to
do. It stands in opposition to what we
are told not to do—lean on our own understanding. That’s our human nature—to trust our thinking
over God’s wisdom.
It’s a wrestling match for most
people. God says one thing but I’m thinking something else makes more
sense. How do I choose God’s way?
Acknowledge him every step of the
way. God, I do not understand it but
I will obey you.
When you hit that first big obstacle
in doing something God’s way, you don’t think or say, Told you so, God. We should have done this my way. On the
contrary, you say, Hallelujah, Amen, Praise the Lord.
You are no sunshine soldier. You acknowledge that you will stay the course
even during hardship.
God’s promise is to keep you on the
very path that he designed for you.
There is God’s way and there is everything
We only go a little farther into this
same chapter to gain wisdom on the Lord’s disciple. Hear
My son, do not despise the Lord’s
and do not resent his rebuke,
because the Lord disciplines those he
as a father the son he delights in.
Direction, correction, rebuke,
admonishment, sanctions, and other actions taken because you veered from the
path set for you by the Lord fall under the umbrella that we call
discipline. Discipline is more than
this, but for now, we consider the corrective part of discipline.
It’s not punishment. Punishment has to do with God’s wrath and if
you have truly professed Jesus is Lord, you will not know that
wrath. It’s more than
saying some words. It’s professing as truth that you believe
completely that Jesus is Lord of all, but especially in your life. It’s also believing that Jesus is who he says
We might think of the way,
the truth, and the life.
What you need to understand is that
God does not punish those who seek him.
He disciplines them. Sometimes it
might be hard to tell the two apart, but they are different and distinct. How?
God disciples those whom he
loves. God’s love is for everyone, but
not everyone will recognize God’s discipline as his love.
Some will—wisely—receive his
will—foolishly--reject it and harden their hearts against him.
Understand that God
desires none to perish. He loves you.
If you will trust in him and seek him, he will use the circumstances of
your life to bring you to loving relationship with him.
One day, you will become a parent and
will get a taste of this. Whether your
child brings home a perfect report card or spent all day in the principal’s
office, you will still love them.
You might give them 20 hugs and a day
of being grounded at the same time, but both are rooted in love.
God loves you and he will do what he
thinks is best to keep you on track.
Our response to God’s discipline
should be Thank You, Amen, Hallelujah, and Praise the Lord! It’s for our own good and comes out of God’s love.
That’s as far as we will go for
now. You are challenged to read the
Proverbs. Read one chapter every day
until you catch up with us and then read the same chapter every day. It is a worthwhile investment.
Wisdom is worth it!
These links may help you catch up.
way and everything else
to mom and dad
of Both Worlds
I Hated Discipline
Full View of the Lord
the ant, work is wisdom
things in the Everything Else Category
in the headlights
Precious than Rubies
as the Ultimate Plank Holder
Your Simple Ways
Water is Sweet