Pathways Through Proverbs
April 27, 2008
Today's Reading - Proverbs 27
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Following Scripture Verses
- Boast not thyself of to morrow; for thou knowest not what a day may bring forth.
- Let another man praise thee, and not thine own mouth; a stranger, and not thine own lips.
- A stone is heavy, and the sand weighty; but a fool's wrath is heavier than them both.
- Wrath is cruel, and anger is outrageous; but who is able to stand before envy?
- Open rebuke is better than secret love.
- Faithful are the wounds of a friend; but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful.
- The full soul loatheth an honeycomb; but to the hungry soul every bitter thing is sweet.
- As a bird that wandereth from her nest, so is a man that wandereth from his place.
- Ointment and perfume rejoice the heart: so doth the sweetness of a man's friend by hearty counsel.
- Thine own friend, and thy father's friend, forsake not; neither go into thy brother's house in the day of thy calamity: for better is a neighbour that is near than a brother far off.
- My son, be wise, and make my heart glad, that I may answer him that reproacheth me.
- A prudent man foreseeth the evil, and hideth himself; but the simple pass on, and are punished.
- Take his garment that is surety for a stranger, and take a pledge of him for a strange woman.
- He that blesseth his friend with a loud voice, rising early in the morning, it shall be counted a curse to him.
- A continual dropping in a very rainy day and a contentious woman are alike.
- Whosoever hideth her hideth the wind, and the ointment of his right hand, which bewrayeth itself.
- Iron sharpeneth iron; so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend.
- Whoso keepeth the fig tree shall eat the fruit thereof: so he that waiteth on his master shall be honoured.
- As in water face answereth to face, so the heart of man to man.
- Hell and destruction are never full; so the eyes of man are never satisfied.
- As the fining pot for silver, and the furnace for gold; so a man to his praise.
- Though thou shouldest bray a fool in a mortar among wheat with a pestle, yet will not his foolishness depart from him.
- Be thou diligent to know the state of thy flocks, and look well to thy herds.
- For riches are not for ever: and doth the crown endure to every generation?
- The hay appeareth, and the tender grass sheweth itself, and herbs of the mountains are gathered.
- The lambs are for thy clothing, and the goats are the price of the field.
- And thou shalt have goats' milk enough for thy food, for the food of thy household, and for the maintenance for thy maidens.
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Solomon is instructing his son in these verses about the importance of friends. Family is wonderful, but friends are important too, and should be appreciated. He opens by reminding us that we should not forsake our friends. He even tells us to be concerned about the needs of those who were friends to our family in years past. I believe that there are two applications to this. First of all, we should not forsake friends when they have a problem. So often we expect someone else to take care of the needs of others. We will excuse our lack of aid by deciding that the struggling individual's family should take care of them. While it is true that family should assist (I Tim. 5:4), it is also true that friends need to help out as well.
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Second, I believe the context also indicates that we should not ignore our friends when we have a problem. Notice that the verse instructs us not to go to our brother's house in the day of calamity. This does not mean that we can not seek help from our family, but it does mean that our friends can be an encouragement and comfort to us, and that we should allow them to be a blessing to us. Often, in times of grief, caring friends have been pushed aside because the hurting person wanted only his family to be around him. This is a serious mistake.
Finally, Solomon teaches us that friends can be more valuable then family. We have all heard the expression, "blood is thicker than water", meaning that family is more important than anything else. The Bible disagrees. If you have a friend who is close by and is a regular help and blessing to you, then thank God for him. Your brother who lives hundreds of miles away may not be there for you, but your neighbor is.
Friendships are important. Be a blessing to your friends, and let them be a blessing to you.
Pastor Mark J Montgomery