Pathways Through Proverbs
December 32, 2008
Today's Reading - Proverbs 32
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Following Scripture Verses
- The words of king Lemuel, the prophecy that his mother taught him.
- What, my son? and what, the son of my womb? and what, the son of my vows?
- Give not thy strength unto women, nor thy ways to that which destroyeth kings.
- It is not for kings, O Lemuel, it is not for kings to drink wine; nor for princes strong drink:
- Lest they drink, and forget the law, and pervert the judgment of any of the afflicted.
- Give strong drink unto him that is ready to perish, and wine unto those that be of heavy hearts.
- Let him drink, and forget his poverty, and remember his misery no more.
- Open thy mouth for the dumb in the cause of all such as are appointed to destruction.
- Open thy mouth, judge righteously, and plead the cause of the poor and needy.
- Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies.
- The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil.
- She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.
- She seeketh wool, and flax, and worketh willingly with her hands.
- She is like the merchants' ships; she bringeth her food from afar.
- She riseth also while it is yet night, and giveth meat to her household, and a portion to her maidens.
- She considereth a field, and buyeth it: with the fruit of her hands she planteth a vineyard.
- She girdeth her loins with strength, and strengtheneth her arms.
- She perceiveth that her merchandise is good: her candle goeth not out by night.
- She layeth her hands to the spindle, and her hands hold the distaff.
- She stretcheth out her hand to the poor; yea, she reacheth forth her hands to the needy.
- She is not afraid of the snow for her household: for all her household are clothed with scarlet.
- She maketh herself coverings of tapestry; her clothing is silk and purple.
- Her husband is known in the gates, when he sitteth among the elders of the land.
- She maketh fine linen, and selleth it; and delivereth girdles unto the merchant.
- Strength and honour are her clothing; and she shall rejoice in time to come.
- She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness.
- She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness.
- Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her.
- Many daughters have done virtuously, but thou excellest them all.
- Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the LORD, she shall be praised.
- Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates.
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Today's verse seems to be very appropriate as we bring the year to a conclusion. While it speaks specifically to the virtuous woman, I believe that there is a principle here that is applicable to all believers, and to a certain extent sums up the message of the entire book.
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The proverb opens with the admonition to "give her of the fruit of her hands." The principle is this: you will reap what you sow. If you act in a foolish manner you will receive the results of that behavior. If you use improper speech, you will get yourself in trouble. If you refuse to discipline your children, your children will someday bring you grief. If you lose your temper, your life will be filled with strife. If you are slothful and wasteful, you will live a life of poverty. If you abstain from evil, and follow the Lord's direction, you will be blessed by Him. Whatever path you choose to take, be it wise or foolish, you will ultimately reap the fruit of the seeds that you have sown.
The second half of the verse indicates that the woman's own works will praise her. Not only will you reap what you sow, but the choices that you make will be seen by others, and they will respond to you with either praise or scorn. A man does not need to go around telling others how wonderful he is; his actions and speech will bear that out. A man's decisions will prove his wisdom or foolishness. A man's family will prove whether or not he was a Biblical husband and father. A man's words will reveal what exists in his heart. The testimony that you currently have in front of the world at large, and the legacy that you will ultimately leave, will let everyone know what kind of Christian you really are.
We all want good fruit, and we all want to be thought of with respect and appreciation. If we consistently put into practice the principles of the past 365 days, we will accomplish both.
Thanks for reading these. I hope that they have been a blessing to you, and perhaps even a help at some point. I do not know if I will continue sending out a devotional each day in 2009. However, I do have some thoughts for the upcoming year, and perhaps I will continue to do this. I guess we will all find out tomorrow!
May the Lord bless you and give you a wonderful New Year to use in service to Him.
Pastor Mark J Montgomery