TAKE TWO PROVERBS AND CALL ME IN THE MORNING
God might prescribe this wisdom as medicine. So I split this chapter into two halves and break it down one line at a time, as one pill at a time. This medicine can cure our nation and the world, but most will not take this free medicine. So only those who submit to God, those of the Kingdom of God, will take this and be cured. When God’s judgment on the world winds down only these will be standing. Foolishness is a terminal disease.
1 Better is the poor that walketh in his integrity, than he that is perverse in his lips, and is a fool.
Poverty is not a curse when it is in partnership with honesty and self-control. Wealth cannot redeem foolish behavior, lies, and offensive speech. Most of us are safer without the false confidence of wealth.
2 Also, that the soul be without knowledge, it is not good; and he that hasteth with his feet sinneth.
We are in danger without knowledge, and that must be scriptural knowledge. To rush into a decision without solid knowledge is to meet destruction. Even religions miss the truth, and often enter life and death battles based on false assumptions. To believe a lie is a deceptive form of knowledge.
3 The foolishness of man perverteth his way: and his heart fretteth against the Lord.
What could be a good life may be going off course because of human foolishness. When we go bad a lingering doubt or an open rebellion ferments in our mind as we fight God.
4 Wealth maketh many friends; but the poor is separated from his neighbour.
Rich men always have good company; lost relatives, financial planners, salesmen, lovers, and counselors. Are those all real friends though? Lose the money and become the poor man to see how fast your closest neighbors become total strangers.
5 A false witness shall not be unpunished, and he that speaketh lies shall not escape.
Liars who bring false charges against the innocent will be found guilty. There is a witness who sees everything we do and reserves his judgment until his time.
6 Many will intreat the favour of the prince: and every man is a friend to him that giveth gifts.
Men who hold the wealth and power have a long list of appointments with a multitude of new friends. A generous man will have many friends as long as the gifts keep coming.
7 All the brethren of the poor do hate him: how much more do his friends go far from him? he pursueth them with words, yet they are wanting to him.
The poor man’s family consider him lazy, a burden, a source of shame, and avoid him. And those who are merely his friends avoid him even more. If he makes a plea for help they prove themselves to be less than true friends.
8 He that getteth wisdom loveth his own soul: he that keepeth understanding shall find good.
One who seeks this wisdom finds the medicine of the soul, which prevents the second death. Who retains that wisdom will discover that it produces only good in this life and the next.
9 A false witness shall not be unpunished, and he that speaketh lies shall perish.
If God repeats himself he is not forgetful, he is making sure that your hearing is working. One who blames an innocent person for a crime will himself be blamed for the greater crime. The liars will be punished, so believe the warning that God has repeated for your benefit: tell the truth.
10 Delight is not seemly for a fool; much less for a servant to have rule over princes.
Celebration is misplaced and inappropriate if victory seems to be handed to a fool. Yet the appointment of unqualified men to leadership positions are even more inappropriate. In this age, promotions are enabling men to make appointments that may demonstrate everything that God has promised to punish.
11 The discretion of a man deferreth his anger; and it is his glory to pass over a transgression.
Self-control is a treasure that can keep us from anger that is destructive. One who can forgive or cover other’s mistakes displays the mercy of God as a shining example. The Christians of Iraq can show the power of God when they can overcome the horror of ISIS. The world needs to see the power of this.
12 The king’s wrath is as the roaring of a lion; but his favour is as dew upon the grass.
We do not have kings as there were when this was written. There are rulers with power to harm the weak, but only one king retains the full anointing of God. Jesus is the king of kings and is the power of God himself. When this king has had enough the whole world will know it. And even now good people know the freedom of walking in his grace.
13 A foolish son is the calamity of his father: and the contentions of a wife are a continual dropping.
Anyone who knows the value of wisdom for a good life strives to give that good gift to his children. There are few sorrows to compare to that of watching children chose the way of death by rejecting wisdom. Another grief is the endless darts of a bitter wife who delivers only complaints. Imagine the grief of the man who knows both!
14 House and riches are the inheritance of fathers: and a prudent wife is from the Lord.
Parents will deliver all the insurance of prosperity that they can for their children. But only god can deliver a godly wife. I am blessed to have seen both.