July 13, 2007
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Following Scripture Verses
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- The proverbs of Solomon the son of David, king of Israel;
- To know wisdom and instruction; to perceive the words of understanding;
- To receive the instruction of wisdom, justice, and judgment, and equity;
- To give subtilty to the simple, to the young man knowledge and discretion.
- A wise man will hear, and will increase learning; and a man of understanding shall attain unto wise counsels:
- To understand a proverb, and the interpretation; the words of the wise, and their dark sayings.
- The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.
- My son, hear the instruction of thy father, and forsake not the law of thy mother:
- For they shall be an ornament of grace unto thy head, and chains about thy neck.
- My son, if sinners entice thee, consent thou not.
- If they say, Come with us, let us lay wait for blood, let us lurk privily for the innocent without cause:
- Let us swallow them up alive as the grave; and whole, as those that go down into the pit:
- We shall find all precious substance, we shall fill our houses with spoil:
- Cast in thy lot among us; let us all have one purse:
- My son, walk not thou in the way with them; refrain thy foot from their path:
- For their feet run to evil, and make haste to shed blood.
- Surely in vain the net is spread in the sight of any bird.
- And they lay wait for their own blood; they lurk privily for their own lives.
- So are the ways of every one that is greedy of gain; which taketh away the life of the owners thereof.
- Wisdom crieth without; she uttereth her voice in the streets:
- She crieth in the chief place of concourse, in the openings of the gates: in the city she uttereth her words, saying,
- How long, ye simple ones, will ye love simplicity? and the scorners delight in their scorning, and fools hate knowledge?
- Turn you at my reproof: behold, I will pour out my spirit unto you, I will make known my words unto you.
- Because I have called, and ye refused; I have stretched out my hand, and no man regarded;
- But ye have set at nought all my counsel, and would none of my reproof:
- I also will laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your fear cometh;
- When your fear cometh as desolation, and your destruction cometh as a whirlwind; when distress and anguish cometh upon you.
- Then shall they call upon me, but I will not answer; they shall seek me early, but they shall not find me:
- For that they hated knowledge, and did not choose the fear of the LORD:
- They would none of my counsel: they despised all my reproof.
- Therefore shall they eat of the fruit of their own way, and be filled with their own devices.
- For the turning away of the simple shall slay them, and the prosperity of fools shall destroy them.
- But whoso hearkeneth unto me shall dwell safely, and shall be quiet from fear of evil.
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- My son, if thou wilt receive my words, and hide my commandments with thee;
- So that thou incline thine ear unto wisdom, and apply thine heart to understanding;
- Yea, if thou criest after knowledge, and liftest up thy voice for understanding;
- If thou seekest her as silver, and searchest for her as for hid treasures;
- Then shalt thou understand the fear of the LORD, and find the knowledge of God.
- For the LORD giveth wisdom: out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding.
- He layeth up sound wisdom for the righteous: he is a buckler to them that walk uprightly.
- He keepeth the paths of judgment, and preserveth the way of his saints.
- Then shalt thou understand righteousness, and judgment, and equity; yea, every good path.
- When wisdom entereth into thine heart, and knowledge is pleasant unto thy soul;
- Discretion shall preserve thee, understanding shall keep thee:
- To deliver thee from the way of the evil man, from the man that speaketh froward things;
- Who leave the paths of uprightness, to walk in the ways of darkness;
- Who rejoice to do evil, and delight in the frowardness of the wicked;
- Whose ways are crooked, and they froward in their paths:
- To deliver thee from the strange woman, even from the stranger which flattereth with her words;
- Which forsaketh the guide of her youth, and forgetteth the covenant of her God.
- For her house inclineth unto death, and her paths unto the dead.
- None that go unto her return again, neither take they hold of the paths of life.
- That thou mayest walk in the way of good men, and keep the paths of the righteous.
- For the upright shall dwell in the land, and the perfect shall remain in it.
- But the wicked shall be cut off from the earth, and the transgressors shall be rooted out of it.
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- My son, forget not my law; but let thine heart keep my commandments:
- For length of days, and long life, and peace, shall they add to thee.
- Let not mercy and truth forsake thee: bind them about thy neck; write them upon the table of thine heart:
- So shalt thou find favour and good understanding in the sight of God and man.
- Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.
- In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.
- Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil.
- It shall be health to thy navel, and marrow to thy bones.
- Honour the LORD with thy substance, and with the firstfruits of all thine increase:
- So shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst out with new wine.
- My son, despise not the chastening of the LORD; neither be weary of his correction:
- For whom the LORD loveth he correcteth; even as a father the son in whom he delighteth.
- Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, and the man that getteth understanding.
- For the merchandise of it is better than the merchandise of silver, and the gain thereof than fine gold.
- She is more precious than rubies: and all the things thou canst desire are not to be compared unto her.
- Length of days is in her right hand; and in her left hand riches and honour.
- Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace.
- She is a tree of life to them that lay hold upon her: and happy is every one that retaineth her.
- The LORD by wisdom hath founded the earth; by understanding hath he established the heavens.
- By his knowledge the depths are broken up, and the clouds drop down the dew.
- My son, let not them depart from thine eyes: keep sound wisdom and discretion:
- So shall they be life unto thy soul, and grace to thy neck.
- Then shalt thou walk in thy way safely, and thy foot shall not stumble.
- When thou liest down, thou shalt not be afraid: yea, thou shalt lie down, and thy sleep shall be sweet.
- Be not afraid of sudden fear, neither of the desolation of the wicked, when it cometh.
- For the LORD shall be thy confidence, and shall keep thy foot from being taken.
- Withhold not good from them to whom it is due, when it is in the power of thine hand to do it.
- Say not unto thy neighbour, Go, and come again, and to morrow I will give; when thou hast it by thee.
- Devise not evil against thy neighbour, seeing he dwelleth securely by thee.
- Strive not with a man without cause, if he have done thee no harm.
- Envy thou not the oppressor, and choose none of his ways.
- For the froward is abomination to the LORD: but his secret is with the righteous.
- The curse of the LORD is in the house of the wicked: but he blesseth the habitation of the just.
- Surely he scorneth the scorners: but he giveth grace unto the lowly.
- The wise shall inherit glory: but shame shall be the promotion of fools.
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Thought for the day:
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The purpose of the book of Proverbs is spelled out for us in the early verses of chapter 1. In verses 2-4 Solomon writes that the proverbs were given,
"To know wisdom and instruction; to perceive the words of understanding; To receive the instruction of wisdom, justice, and judgment, and equity; To give subtilty to the simple, to the young man knowledge and discretion."
Mankind in general today lacks wisdom, and unfortunately the same is true among many Christians as well. These proverbs are succinct statements that will give those who hear them and apply them the understanding necessary to function in this evil world.
In verse 7 of chapter 1, Solomon establishes the foundational principle of the book. There he states,
"The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction."
Nothing else given in the book of Proverbs will be of benefit if the reader does not first fear the Lord. After all, if God is not to be feared, then why should what He has to say be heeded? This fear of the Lord is contrasted with the fool who despises wisdom. The Lord, through the pen of Solomon, does not mince words here. Wisdom only comes to those who put God first, and those who don't do so are fools. These seem to be the only two options given, so right away each one of us has to determine which group we are a part of.
Beginning in verse 22 of chapter 1, Solomon discusses the repercussions of rejecting the wisdom of God. In verse 22 he spells out the three levels of spiritual ignorance: the simple, the scorner, and the fool. The simple are those who either do not know truth, normally because of chronological or spiritual youth, or those who ignore the truth that they are given. As they progress through life and continue to reject the light that they have, they begin to become scoffers, making fun of those who attempt to live their lives by Biblical standards. If they do not turn from this path, they sink to the lowest level: that of the fool. These people hate the wisdom of the Word of God and completely reject what It has to say. Please note that as soon as an individual chooses to ignore that which the Bible says, he has begun down the path towards becoming a fool. Since none of us wants to carry that label, we need to repent immediately and put into practice the wisdom of God.
In verse 23 the Lord calls for repentance. He promises that He will fill us with the Holy Spirit and will give us further light if we will respond to that which we already have. However, if we choose not to repent, there is a price to be paid. God says in verses 24 and 25 that He attempts to get His children to return to Him. He calls and stretches out His hand in an effort to get our attention and assist us back to Him. He offers counsel, and even reproof, to then wayward because His desire is to have His children follow Him. Yet when that is rejected the judgment of God must fall. When trials come to the rebel, God says that He will laugh at them. When they are filled with fear and anguish, and want God to now step in and solve their problems, He states in verse 28 that He will not answer them. The reason given is "they hated knowledge, and did not choose the fear of the LORD: They would none of my counsel: they despised all my reproof," (29-30). God gave them an opportunity to repent, and they chose to ignore it. They could have had the blessings of God, but they didn't want them. Now that they want God's help, it is too late. According to verse 31 they shall "eat of the fruit of their own way, and be filled with their own devices."
The Bible tells us to "seek the Lord while He may be found" (Isaiah 55:6). We don't have the right to assume that God functions at our beck and call. When He reveals truth to us, or leads us to repentance, we need to respond immediately, for there may come a time when it is too late for us to receive the blessings that He desires to give us today.
But whoso hearkeneth unto me shall dwell safely, and shall be quiet from fear of evil.
Pastor Mark J Montgomery