Pathways Through Proverbs
February 18, 2008
Today's Reading - Proverbs 18
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Following Scripture Verses
- Through desire a man, having separated himself, seeketh and intermeddleth with all wisdom.
- A fool hath no delight in understanding, but that his heart may discover itself.
- When the wicked cometh, then cometh also contempt, and with ignominy reproach.
- The words of a man's mouth are as deep waters, and the wellspring of wisdom as a flowing brook.
- It is not good to accept the person of the wicked, to overthrow the righteous in judgment.
- A fool's lips enter into contention, and his mouth calleth for strokes.
- A fool's mouth is his destruction, and his lips are the snare of his soul.
- The words of a talebearer are as wounds, and they go down into the innermost parts of the belly.
- He also that is slothful in his work is brother to him that is a great waster.
- The name of the LORD is a strong tower: the righteous runneth into it, and is safe.
- The rich man's wealth is his strong city, and as an high wall in his own conceit.
- Before destruction the heart of man is haughty, and before honour is humility.
- He that answereth a matter before he heareth it, it is folly and shame unto him.
- The spirit of a man will sustain his infirmity; but a wounded spirit who can bear?
- The heart of the prudent getteth knowledge; and the ear of the wise seeketh knowledge.
- A man's gift maketh room for him, and bringeth him before great men.
- He that is first in his own cause seemeth just; but his neighbour cometh and searcheth him.
- The lot causeth contentions to cease, and parteth between the mighty.
- A brother offended is harder to be won than a strong city: and their contentions are like the bars of a castle.
- A man's belly shall be satisfied with the fruit of his mouth; and with the increase of his lips shall he be filled.
- Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.
- Whoso findeth a wife findeth a good thing, and obtaineth favour of the LORD.
- The poor useth intreaties; but the rich answereth roughly.
- A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother.
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There are several great truths that are presented in this verse. The first is of a very practical nature: if you want to have friends, you need to be a friend. Over the years I have encountered numerous people who complained about their lack of friends, but they personally did nothing to try to be a friend to someone else. My favorite example concerns the individual who gets offended when the preacher doesn't come and shake his hand in church. He is angry that the pastor didn't come to him, but he clearly made no attempt to walk to the pastor! Don't hide in a corner or be unapproachable and then get upset because people don't seek out your company. Be a friend to others, and I guarantee that some of those people will become friends to you.
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The second truth has been a great encouragement to many believers down through the years. Sometimes your friends are closer to you than your own relatives are. I have known church members from unsaved families who found their friendship and fellowship among their Christian brothers. Their families rejected them because of their new beliefs, but they found the comfort, encouragement, and love that they needed in their local church. Here are two lessons: as a Christian, don't give up because your relatives don't want you, for there are believers who want to help you. Also, look for the Christian who may be alone in his faith. He needs someone to fill in the gap left by an unsaved family.
The third truth builds on the second: when absolutely no one seems to care, the Lord Jesus will stick with us. He calls us friends (John 15:15), and He has promised to never leave us nor forsake us (Heb. 13:5). You should be a friend to others, but even if they refuse to respond, always remember that Jesus wants to be the best Friend you ever had.
Pastor Mark J Montgomery