September 1, 2009

Proverbs 1

There are some good comments on Proverbs 31, so go back and read those if you haven't! Since we reached the end of Proverbs it feels like we should be done, but we started this challenge at Proverbs 10! I am going to use this opportunity to sprinkle in sermon notes and questions from my pastor's daily meditations (I've received permission!)

The proverbs of Solomon son of David, king of Israel:

2 for attaining wisdom and discipline;
for understanding words of insight;

3 for acquiring a disciplined and prudent life,
doing what is right and just and fair;

4 for giving prudence to the simple,
knowledge and discretion to the young-

5 let the wise listen and add to their learning,
and let the discerning get guidance-

6 for understanding proverbs and parables,
the sayings and riddles of the wise.

7 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge,
but fools despise wisdom and discipline.

Why did Solomon write the Proverbs? Where does wisdom come from? How is the fear of the Lord the beginning of knowledge? What does it mean to fear the Lord? Who is the wisest person you know?

8 Listen, my son, to your father's instruction
and do not forsake your mother's teaching.

9 They will be a garland to grace your head
and a chain to adorn your neck.

10 My son, if sinners entice you,
do not give in to them.

11 If they say, "Come along with us;
let's lie in wait for some one's blood,
let's waylay some harmless soul;

12 let's swallow them alive, like the grave,
and whole, like those who go down to the pit;

13 we will get all sorts of valuable things
and fill our houses with plunder;

14 throw in your lot with us,
and we will share a common purse"-

15 my son, do not go along with them,
do not set foot on their paths;

16 for their feet rush into sin,
they are swift to shed blood.

17 How useless to spread a net
in full view of all the birds!

18 These men lie in wait for their own blood;
they waylay only themselves!

19 Such is the end of all who go after ill-gotten gain;
it takes away the lives of those who get it.

20 Wisdom calls aloud in the street,
she raises her voice in the public squares;

21 at the head of the noisy streets she cries out,
in the gateways of the city she makes her speech:

I love that wisdom is described as bold. Sometimes when I'm in the midst of a lot of people who are speaking foolishly or about foolish things, I don't have any confidence at all to speak wisdom. I feel like what I have to say is foolish.

22 "How long will you simple ones love your simple ways?
How long will mockers delight in mockery
and fools hate knowledge?

23 If you had responded to my rebuke,
I would have poured out my heart to you
and made my thoughts known to you.

24 But since you rejected me when I called
and no one gave heed when I stretched out my hand,

25 since you ignored all my advice
and would not accept my rebuke,

26 I in turn will laugh at your disaster;
I will mock when calamity overtakes you-

27 when calamity overtakes you like a storm,
when disaster sweeps over you like a whirlwind,
when distress and trouble overwhelm you.

28 "Then they will call to me but I will not answer;
they will look for me but will not find me.

29 Since they hated knowledge
and did not choose to fear the LORD,

30 since they would not accept my advice
and spurned my rebuke,

31 they will eat the fruit of their ways
and be filled with the fruit of their schemes.

32 For the waywardness of the simple will kill them,
and the complacency of fools will destroy them;

33 but whoever listens to me will live in safety
and be at ease, without fear of harm."

Verse 32 is so good for me to read. It's not that fools went on a mission to ignore God. They were just wayward and complacent. Look where it got them? Killed and destroyed. Listening to wisdom brings safety and ease. I relax just reading those words.


Stephanie's Mommy Brain said...

Interesting how wisdom and discipline always go together.

PS. Via Reader at 1:10 pm eastern

Candice said...

When I was reading this Proverb I couldn't help but think how the world has never changed. We think that this generations problems are unique-they are not.

Do you notice the longing of a father and mother saying "son, don't join a gang. It will lead you nowhere. It's your blood that will be shed in the end." Do I truly cry out to my son's "listen, don't go that way! Choose life, wisdom, and the fear of the Lord." Sure, I make them go to church but do I truly cry out to them?

Then in the middle we have the reality that God has wisdom call out to us everywhere we are. In the streets, at the gates! Wisdom is everywhere to see to those who are looking for it. It's in the parable of life. It isn't hidden as we think of hidden, it is there calling out for those with ears!

Then there is the ultimate punishment for those who do not pay any attention. Those who don't listen or think to look for the wisdom around them. When the time comes and the world collapses around them they will will ask but it will be nowhere to be found. I view this as eternal punishment.

Father, Jesus, Spirit of the Almighty God. Open our ears! We seek you as for treasure and search for you as gold. May we open our ears and listen to the wisdom you offer us on a daily basis. My mind is so busy and content with what I am doing I don't even pursue wisdom. Cleanse our ears. I ask that you would show us in your infinate wisdom what it is to truly fear you. Then may we be quick to obey. Ever seeking your face! May we be found in the Holy of Holies where you are! Oh, Word of God, speak. Amen