Pathways Through Proverbs
December 9, 2008
Today's Reading - Proverbs 9
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Following Scripture Verses
- Wisdom hath builded her house, she hath hewn out her seven pillars:
- She hath killed her beasts; she hath mingled her wine; she hath also furnished her table.
- She hath sent forth her maidens: she crieth upon the highest places of the city,
- Whoso is simple, let him turn in hither: as for him that wanteth understanding, she saith to him,
- Come, eat of my bread, and drink of the wine which I have mingled.
- Forsake the foolish, and live; and go in the way of understanding.
- He that reproveth a scorner getteth to himself shame: and he that rebuketh a wicked man getteth himself a blot.
- Reprove not a scorner, lest he hate thee: rebuke a wise man, and he will love thee.
- Give instruction to a wise man, and he will be yet wiser: teach a just man, and he will increase in learning.
- The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding.
- For by me thy days shall be multiplied, and the years of thy life shall be increased.
- If thou be wise, thou shalt be wise for thyself: but if thou scornest, thou alone shalt bear it.
- A foolish woman is clamorous: she is simple, and knoweth nothing.
- For she sitteth at the door of her house, on a seat in the high places of the city,
- To call passengers who go right on their ways:
- Whoso is simple, let him turn in hither: and as for him that wanteth understanding, she saith to him,
- Stolen waters are sweet, and bread eaten in secret is pleasant.
- But he knoweth not that the dead are there; and that her guests are in the depths of hell.
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As we have seen previously, Proverbs 9 depicts the choice that a man must make between wisdom and foolishness. Wisdom is crying out for him to choose her in these early verses, but in the middle of stating why wisdom should be the choice, Solomon includes the verses in our text. Perhaps the previous verse sheds light on the reason for this, for in it the call is given to "Forsake the foolish and live." This is a message that the scorner does not want to hear. He thinks that he is living quite well now, and does not want to be told that his behavior is foolish and will ultimately bring about his destruction. Thus, he will normally rebel against the reproof.
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When a fool rejects a rebuke, he will undoubtedly do it in a vicious way. He will mock the one who has called him to repentance. He will make accusations against him, both to his face and behind his back. Thus, the one who is pleading with the fool to change his ways receives shame and a blot for his efforts. The fool's friends will join him in his ridicule of the believer. They will be quick to listen to every false charge that is made against him. His reputation will be damaged because he has taken a stand for righteousness. And, according to verse 8, he will be hated.
This sounds terrible, and Solomon warns that this is going to happen when we deal with the ungodly. However, it seems to me that all these things happened to Jesus. He was despised, accused of being a sinner, and mocked for his lineage and His statements concerning His Deity. He was hated so much that He was crucified. The reason for this is that He called men to forsake their foolish ideas of a works-based or nationality-based salvation, and called on them to repent and believe.
If we are going to be like Christ, we are going to suffer reproach for it. If we are going to call men to repentance, we need to be prepared for their rejection. The call of wisdom remains the same, and we must deliver it, regardless of the consequences.
Pastor Mark J Montgomery