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Ambassador Baptist Church
1926 Babcock Blvd
Pittsburgh, PA 15209
(412)822-7255
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Pastor's Pen - July 18, 2007
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July 18, 2007

Proverbs 16-18
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Proverbs
Chapter 16
  1. The preparations of the heart in man, and the answer of the tongue, is from the LORD.
  2. All the ways of a man are clean in his own eyes; but the LORD weigheth the spirits.
  3. Commit thy works unto the LORD, and thy thoughts shall be established.
  4. The LORD hath made all things for himself: yea, even the wicked for the day of evil.
  5. Every one that is proud in heart is an abomination to the LORD: though hand join in hand, he shall not be unpunished.
  6. By mercy and truth iniquity is purged: and by the fear of the LORD men depart from evil.
  7. When a man's ways please the LORD, he maketh even his enemies to be at peace with him.
  8. Better is a little with righteousness than great revenues without right.
  9. A man's heart deviseth his way: but the LORD directeth his steps.
  10. A divine sentence is in the lips of the king: his mouth transgresseth not in judgment.
  11. A just weight and balance are the LORD'S: all the weights of the bag are his work.
  12. It is an abomination to kings to commit wickedness: for the throne is established by righteousness.
  13. Righteous lips are the delight of kings; and they love him that speaketh right.
  14. The wrath of a king is as messengers of death: but a wise man will pacify it.
  15. In the light of the king's countenance is life; and his favour is as a cloud of the latter rain.
  16. How much better is it to get wisdom than gold! and to get understanding rather to be chosen than silver!
  17. The highway of the upright is to depart from evil: he that keepeth his way preserveth his soul.
  18. Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall.
  19. Better it is to be of an humble spirit with the lowly, than to divide the spoil with the proud.
  20. He that handleth a matter wisely shall find good: and whoso trusteth in the LORD, happy is he.
  21. The wise in heart shall be called prudent: and the sweetness of the lips increaseth learning.
  22. Understanding is a wellspring of life unto him that hath it: but the instruction of fools is folly.
  23. The heart of the wise teacheth his mouth, and addeth learning to his lips.
  24. Pleasant words are as an honeycomb, sweet to the soul, and health to the bones.
  25. There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.
  26. He that laboureth laboureth for himself; for his mouth craveth it of him.
  27. An ungodly man diggeth up evil: and in his lips there is as a burning fire.
  28. A froward man soweth strife: and a whisperer separateth chief friends.
  29. A violent man enticeth his neighbour, and leadeth him into the way that is not good.
  30. He shutteth his eyes to devise froward things: moving his lips he bringeth evil to pass.
  31. The hoary head is a crown of glory, if it be found in the way of righteousness.
  32. He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty; and he that ruleth his spirit than he that taketh a city.
  33. The lot is cast into the lap; but the whole disposing thereof is of the LORD.


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Proverbs
Chapter 17
  1. Better is a dry morsel, and quietness therewith, than an house full of sacrifices with strife.
  2. A wise servant shall have rule over a son that causeth shame, and shall have part of the inheritance among the brethren.
  3. The fining pot is for silver, and the furnace for gold: but the LORD trieth the hearts.
  4. A wicked doer giveth heed to false lips; and a liar giveth ear to a naughty tongue.
  5. Whoso mocketh the poor reproacheth his Maker: and he that is glad at calamities shall not be unpunished.
  6. Children's children are the crown of old men; and the glory of children are their fathers.
  7. Excellent speech becometh not a fool: much less do lying lips a prince.
  8. A gift is as a precious stone in the eyes of him that hath it: whithersoever it turneth, it prospereth.
  9. He that covereth a transgression seeketh love; but he that repeateth a matter separateth very friends.
  10. A reproof entereth more into a wise man than an hundred stripes into a fool.
  11. An evil man seeketh only rebellion: therefore a cruel messenger shall be sent against him.
  12. Let a bear robbed of her whelps meet a man, rather than a fool in his folly.
  13. Whoso rewardeth evil for good, evil shall not depart from his house.
  14. The beginning of strife is as when one letteth out water: therefore leave off contention, before it be meddled with.
  15. He that justifieth the wicked, and he that condemneth the just, even they both are abomination to the LORD.
  16. Wherefore is there a price in the hand of a fool to get wisdom, seeing he hath no heart to it?
  17. A friend loveth at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.
  18. A man void of understanding striketh hands, and becometh surety in the presence of his friend.
  19. He loveth transgression that loveth strife: and he that exalteth his gate seeketh destruction.
  20. He that hath a froward heart findeth no good: and he that hath a perverse tongue falleth into mischief.
  21. He that begetteth a fool doeth it to his sorrow: and the father of a fool hath no joy.
  22. A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones.
  23. A wicked man taketh a gift out of the bosom to pervert the ways of judgment.
  24. Wisdom is before him that hath understanding; but the eyes of a fool are in the ends of the earth.
  25. A foolish son is a grief to his father, and bitterness to her that bare him.
  26. Also to punish the just is not good, nor to strike princes for equity.
  27. He that hath knowledge spareth his words: and a man of understanding is of an excellent spirit.
  28. Even a fool, when he holdeth his peace, is counted wise: and he that shutteth his lips is esteemed a man of understanding.


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Proverbs
Chapter 18
  1. Through desire a man, having separated himself, seeketh and intermeddleth with all wisdom.
  2. A fool hath no delight in understanding, but that his heart may discover itself.
  3. When the wicked cometh, then cometh also contempt, and with ignominy reproach.
  4. The words of a man's mouth are as deep waters, and the wellspring of wisdom as a flowing brook.
  5. It is not good to accept the person of the wicked, to overthrow the righteous in judgment.
  6. A fool's lips enter into contention, and his mouth calleth for strokes.
  7. A fool's mouth is his destruction, and his lips are the snare of his soul.
  8. The words of a talebearer are as wounds, and they go down into the innermost parts of the belly.
  9. He also that is slothful in his work is brother to him that is a great waster.
  10. The name of the LORD is a strong tower: the righteous runneth into it, and is safe.
  11. The rich man's wealth is his strong city, and as an high wall in his own conceit.
  12. Before destruction the heart of man is haughty, and before honour is humility.
  13. He that answereth a matter before he heareth it, it is folly and shame unto him.
  14. The spirit of a man will sustain his infirmity; but a wounded spirit who can bear?
  15. The heart of the prudent getteth knowledge; and the ear of the wise seeketh knowledge.
  16. A man's gift maketh room for him, and bringeth him before great men.
  17. He that is first in his own cause seemeth just; but his neighbour cometh and searcheth him.
  18. The lot causeth contentions to cease, and parteth between the mighty.
  19. A brother offended is harder to be won than a strong city: and their contentions are like the bars of a castle.
  20. A man's belly shall be satisfied with the fruit of his mouth; and with the increase of his lips shall he be filled.
  21. Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.
  22. Whoso findeth a wife findeth a good thing, and obtaineth favour of the LORD.
  23. The poor useth intreaties; but the rich answereth roughly.
  24. A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother.


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Thought for the day:
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 There are several different verses that we will look at today. The first is found in Proverbs 16:32:

"He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty; and he that ruleth his spirit than he that taketh a city."
Unfortunately, many Christians struggle with anger issues. They seem to feel that is someone offends them or inconveniences them that they have the right to lose their temper. I have heard Christians make threats towards others, and brag about how they will do this or that to the person who crosses them. This is foolish. A person may have physical might, but he would be better off to keep his temper in check. In fact, according to this verse, it is better to be in control of your spirit than it is to be able to conquer someone or something else. Our society teaches that "might makes right". Solomon writes that self-control, particularly in the area of angry emotions, is far better.

 The second verse to be noted is Proverbs 17:22, which reads,

"A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones."
The Christian's attitude toward life has a profound impact on his physical well-being. If an individual is continually gloomy, always thinking and imagining the worst, this will affect them in a very negative way. It will "dry them up" physically, and certainly influence their ability to serve the Lord. However, even when times are tough, the person who can exhibit the joy of the Lord, which is our strength (Neh. 8:10), will find that this produces in him the physical and spiritual refreshing that comes from trusting the Lord. Solomon says that it is like medicine, and it costs nothing!

 Another interesting verse is found in Proverbs 18:2. Here Solomon writes,

"A fool hath no delight in understanding, but that his heart may discover itself."
How often have we encountered people who do not want to be bothered with the facts, but simply want to state their own opinions? You can attempt to explain to them what is going on, and yet all they want to do is spout off their views. The Bible says that it is the foolish man who doesn't want to understand. The reason he doesn't want to understand is that he has already made up his mind in his heart, and he is anxious to share all he knows (or thinks he knows) with others rather than listening to what they have to say. I need to regularly ask myself the question: "Am I willing to listen and learn, or do I simply want to speak my mind."

 The final verse in this passage that we will discuss is Proverbs 18:24. It says,

"A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother."
There are two important aspects to this verse. First, there is the principle of friendliness. It is simply stated this way: if you want to have friends, be a friend. Over the years I have encountered people who complained that they had few friends, yet they themselves made minimal efforts to befriend others. On a personal note: I have had the experience as a pastor of hearing people complain that I didn't shake their hands on a given Sunday morning. This always makes me chuckle, for the fact is that they obviously made no attempt to shake my hand either! Because I never got around to them I am evil, but their unwillingness to come to shake hands with me is insignificant in their eyes. How foolish. I did not intentionally avoid these individuals, and, had they walked over to me and stuck out their hands, there would have been no problem at all. See, they wanted a "friend", but I had to be the one to make the first move. If you feel like you have no friends, perhaps you should try being a friend, and see how many people are really waiting to respond to you. The second aspect of this verse deals with Jesus Christ. Over the years I have had believers who came from unsaved family backgrounds tell me that their church friends were closer to them than their own blood relatives. I believe that this is the way it should be among brothers and sisters in Christ. In addition, Jesus Christ is the Friend of the Christian. John 15:13-15 Jesus said,
"Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you. Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you."
Christ is the greatest Friend that anyone could ever have, and our relationship to Him can be sweeter than any earthly relationship ever could be.

Pastor Mark J Montgomery

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Home of Ambassador Baptist Church
1926 Babcock Blvd
Pittsburgh, PA 15209
(412)822-7255
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