CLEAR WARNINGS OF THE STORM
Does wisdom have a place in our modern world? Solomon delivered the wisdom of God to us but do we even submit to God? Watching the leaders of our nation leaves that question very much in doubt. Seeing the support of the people for corrupt leaders suggests that our petty greed far outweighs our commitment to any higher authority or conscience. Watching the general apathy or selfish interests points to the same destruction that Solomon’s Israel experienced in their day.
23 A man hath joy by the answer of his mouth: and a word spoken in due season, how good is it!
There may be many ways to give joy to others with good words. Encouragement overcomes doubt and fear. Compliments build self image and wise counsel prevents all kinds of bad experiences. Confession and apologies are great but forgiveness is powerful. Words can be weapons of peace.
24 The way of life is above to the wise, that he may depart from hell beneath.
No, life is not in a starship or on the Moon. God is above the wisdom of man, and no wisdom or science surpasses him. This life and the next depend on his wisdom and no other. You are reading the right book.
25 The Lord will destroy the house of the proud: but he will establish the border of the widow.
Well there certainly is a choice. You may turn away from the wisdom of God with your free will. Pride can make us reject “religion” and the real God as well. Everything we are, all that we represent can be demolished or lifted up at the will of God. He will protect the faithful against all destruction.
26 The thoughts of the wicked are an abomination to the Lord: but the words of the pure are pleasant words.
How many wicked men and women do we have in our world and nation? We are learning that our elected officials are deep in vile corruption and violence. God knows the heart of darkness and it is vile and offensive to his holiness. God also knows those who are truthful, kind, and righteous even when no one else sees. That is a position with rewards.
27 He that is greedy of gain troubleth his own house; but he that hateth gifts shall live.
Greed is the word that is destroying our nation today. As it destroys our leaders, so it also destroys the home and family of all who are obsessed with gain. Isn’t it amazing when a politician refuses a bribe? So a man can become taller by living by honesty.
28 The heart of the righteous studieth to answer: but the mouth of the wicked poureth out evil things.
When you live to do right you learn to find the best source for answers. Here you are, in the Proverbs, the best place to start. Those who live for themselves have no reason to search for better poison than their own home brew.
29 The Lord is far from the wicked: but he heareth the prayer of the righteous.
Why is it so hard for some to believe in God? They never see evidence of God when he is driven, repelled by their actions. In contrast there is no limit to the range of prayers from those who are his servants.
30 The light of the eyes rejoiceth the heart: and a good report maketh the bones fat.
Well a twinkle in the eye is welcome, but the light of a clear conscience signals confidence to our friends. A life of service and honesty helps you and your friends and neighbors.
31 The ear that heareth the reproof of life abideth among the wise.
Hearing reproof is hard for all of us. Scripture is full of reproof and yet I know people with years in ministry who struggle with issues clearly defined by scriptures.
32 He that refuseth instruction despiseth his own soul: but he that heareth reproof getteth understanding.
Self loathing must be at epidemic level in America considering how many warnings have been published about our presidential candidates. The bible has some warnings that apply and even the Christians are in rebellion. There is no obligation to vote for corruption and the constitution is under the Bible. Well I know there are no few people who have been paying attention. Corruption is being exposed and opposed so these have the kind of understanding that gives life.
33 The fear of the Lord is the instruction of wisdom; and before honour is humility.
The fear of the Lord is again being revealed as a key to wisdom, the beginning of knowledge. God is the key to life or death and this humbles our self sufficiency. When we allow God to be sovereign he recognizes our surrender with honor. How our elected officials need to learn the value of humility.