Pathways Through Proverbs
November 7, 2008
Today's Reading - Proverbs 7
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Following Scripture Verses
- My son, keep my words, and lay up my commandments with thee.
- Keep my commandments, and live; and my law as the apple of thine eye.
- Bind them upon thy fingers, write them upon the table of thine heart.
- Say unto wisdom, Thou art my sister; and call understanding thy kinswoman:
- That they may keep thee from the strange woman, from the stranger which flattereth with her words.
- For at the window of my house I looked through my casement,
- And beheld among the simple ones, I discerned among the youths, a young man void of understanding,
- Passing through the street near her corner; and he went the way to her house,
- In the twilight, in the evening, in the black and dark night:
- And, behold, there met him a woman with the attire of an harlot, and subtil of heart.
- (She is loud and stubborn; her feet abide not in her house:
- Now is she without, now in the streets, and lieth in wait at every corner.)
- So she caught him, and kissed him, and with an impudent face said unto him,
- I have peace offerings with me; this day have I payed my vows.
- Therefore came I forth to meet thee, diligently to seek thy face, and I have found thee.
- I have decked my bed with coverings of tapestry, with carved works, with fine linen of Egypt.
- I have perfumed my bed with myrrh, aloes, and cinnamon.
- Come, let us take our fill of love until the morning: let us solace ourselves with loves.
- For the goodman is not at home, he is gone a long journey:
- He hath taken a bag of money with him, and will come home at the day appointed.
- With her much fair speech she caused him to yield, with the flattering of her lips she forced him.
- He goeth after her straightway, as an ox goeth to the slaughter, or as a fool to the correction of the stocks;
- Till a dart strike through his liver; as a bird hasteth to the snare, and knoweth not that it is for his life.
- Hearken unto me now therefore, O ye children, and attend to the words of my mouth.
- Let not thine heart decline to her ways, go not astray in her paths.
- For she hath cast down many wounded: yea, many strong men have been slain by her.
- Her house is the way to hell, going down to the chambers of death.
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We have spent almost the entire year looking at the sad case in this chapter of a young man surrendering his purity to a wicked woman. We have noted bad decisions that he made and tools that she used in her attempt to seduce him. Finally, after all that has transpired that evening, we come to verse 21 where the young man falls into immorality.
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It is interesting to note that what ultimately pushed him over the edge was her words. Undoubtedly her appearance and touch enticed him, but it was her claims that she loved him, and that she had been to the Temple, and that know one would ever know that finally broke his will to resist. He put himself squarely in the middle of temptation, and then her words led him to surrender to it. Notice the use of the word "force". She could not make him sin by the force of her physical strength, but she could make him sin through her speech. We must learn from this that the words that we listen to are powerful, and they will lead us to commit actions that we never thought we would. Therefore, we need to guard our ears, and sift everything we hear through the Word of God.
Also, notice the unflattering way that verse 22 describes his decision: he is as an ox going to slaughter and a fool going to punishment. There are two common elements in these descriptions. First of all, neither the ox nor the fool understands what the consequences of their actions are. The ox is a dumb animal, and the fool is spiritually incapable of understanding. Second, both sets of consequences are very severe. For the ox it means his death, although he doesn't realize that as he heads down the path. For the fool it is pain, public humiliation, and a lasting reputation, but he doesn't think about that because he is enjoying his sin so much.
Be very careful in the words you listen to, the people you spend your time with, and the activities that you get involved in. What seems like a good idea right now may prove to be the worst decision you could have made. Do everything based upon the Scriptures and the leadership of the Holy Spirit and you won't go astray.
Pastor Mark J Montgomery