The Proverb For The Day

 

 

22:4, By humility and the fear of the Lord are riches and honor and life.” Everyone lives by something and here we are encouraged to live by humility, and the fear of the Lord. Humility for most is difficult to live by; it is a lowly position not giving thought to self or a care for the recognition of the world. The fear of the Lord is a spirit of humble dependency on God, and reverence for Him. There is much to be enjoyed by those who humble themselves before God. And by doing so there is a threefold reward. First riches, the meek are to be rewarded with the inheritance of the earth (Matt.5:5). In the end, the best man will receive the best things here and in heaven. Second honor, the highest comes from God who discerns the heart, puts down the proud, and exalts the humble. Last, there is eternal life which is found only by faith in Jesus Christ! Pastor Gary <><

21:18, “The wicked shall be a ransom for the righteous, and the unfaithful for the upright.” This same truth is also found in Proverbs 11:8. God is at hand to deliver the righteous out of trouble. In fact, the trouble that the wicked devise for the righteous comes back on them. Or God takes the righteous away from the evil to come. The evil from which the righteous is saved fails upon the wicked. As Abraham says to the rich man in the parable, "Lazarus is now happy, and you are in pain" (Luke 16:25). This type of substitution occurs many times in Scripture. Thus, Haman was hanged on the gallows which he had erected for Mordecai (Esther 7:10); Daniel's accusers were cast into the den of lions from which he was saved (Daniel 6:24). The truth will come out and the righteous will be delivered, God has said so! Pastor Gary ><>

20:6, “Most men will proclaim each his own goodness, but who can find a faithful man?” A man’s tendency is to assure himself that he is right, even when he is totally wrong. It’s good to have confidence in yourself as long as you have examined and found yourself true in character and moral integrity. A man may be right and full of goodness but this will be discovered and confirmed by others. A man may proclaim his goodness, but be wise, wait and inquire before you take a man’s words about himself! Many have been hurt, abused, and misled by believing the smooth talk of a self-righteous man. Faithful men yield to God and love Him, they help their neighbors, and by doing so prove to be full of goodness. Be careful face value could prove to be less valuable than you first thought! “Ask the Lord to put awareness of Himself in you, and your self-awareness will disappear” (O.C. 8-20). Pastor Gary <><

19:5, 9, “A false witness will not go unpunished, and he who speaks lies will not escape.” Verse 9 adds “shall parish.” A false witness is always a threat to any community. It turns our system of justice into at times putting the wrong person in jail, or ruining their reputation. It also causes questions as to who is telling the truth. I think we just saw the reality of this during the presidential election. During the pre-election, we were not sure who to believe, or trust with the highest leadership position in our nation. And there is still many doubts and fears about the elect. I believe we all know that everything that was said about or by each candidate was not true, and we are now left to sort it all out. Determining justice sometimes is difficult, but even more difficult when false witnesses are called on. I want to encourage you to trust the Lord because liars will not go unpunished. Pastor Gary ><>

18:16, “A man's gift makes room for him, and brings him before great men.”  The Oriental custom of offering suitable gifts to one in authority, when a favor or an audience is desired, is here referred to. The gift here is not a bribe but rather a special gift given for reasons of respect, honor, or, love. Gifts could change a person’s mood, put a smile on someone’s face, or make someone’s day. A gift may even get you out of the dog house! Gifts have been a long time tradition of birthdays, Christmas, etc. A gift may provide a way into the heart of a person. God gave a gift that can change the heart of everyone’s life. God’s gift is Jesus Christ (John 3:16). The wise men brought gifts to Jesus showing reverence for the new born King. Gifts are important they may not be required but they are essential. I hope you have received the greatest gift of all Jesus Christ. Pastor Gary ><>

17:18, “A man devoid of understanding shakes hands in a pledge, and becomes surety for his friend.” John Phillips wrote, “To strike a bargain on behalf of a friend is the quickest way to destroy a friendship. When money comes between friends, problems often follow. It is rarely a good idea to loan money to a friend, to borrow money from a friend, or to ask a friend to provide security for a loan or guarantee a loan. It is not usually a good idea to sell a car to a friend. If something goes wrong with the transaction or some misunderstanding arises, the friendship will be strained.” I would have done well to have learned this lesson earlier in life. It could have saved me some disappointments, anger, and trouble. I know you may be thinking you don’t have a friend like mine, and that’s what most think until money is involved. Just be careful! Pastor Gary ><>  

16:10-15, “(A divine sentence) is on the lips of the king; His mouth must not transgress in judgment. Honest weights and scales are the LORD'S; All the weights in the bag are His work. It is an abomination for kings to commit wickedness, for a throne is established by righteousness. Righteous lips are the delight of kings, and they love him who speaks what is right. As messengers of death is the king's wrath, but a wise man will appease it. In the light of the king's face is life, and his favor is like a cloud of the latter rain.” The writer is stating the ideal leader. What he should do as a leader, but not all leaders do the right thing. A leader is to be right in judgement, honest with people, stay away from wickedness, and speak the truth. A leader that appoints judges, enters wars, signs bills, and leads leaders must be established by righteousness! We are still in trouble. Pray! Pastor Gary ><>

15:25, “The LORD will destroy the house of the proud, but He will establish the boundary of the widow.” Why would anyone want to stand in pride knowing eventually his or her house will be destroyed? Because they don’t believe this or any other truth from God’s Word. The proud are self-confident and believe they will answer to no one. But they fail to realize that they did not create themselves nor will they have the last word about their actions. Their house will fall. But note the widow void of all such pride her boundary is protected, and established. The widow is a symbol of weakness and easily taken advantage of throughout the Bible. Landmarks were easily moved and was a common practice used to steal from the weak. Be warned you may steal and even get away with it for now, but God will have the last word and he never fails in His promises. Pastor Gary ><>

14:10, “The heart knows its own bitterness, and a stranger does not share its joy.” A homely proverb says, "No one knows where the shoe pinches so well as he that wears it.” A person only knows the hurt or joy of another if he tells it, but even telling it falls short of the depth of either of these feelings. Neither our joys nor our sorrows can be wholly shared with another; no person stands in such intimate relation to us, or can put himself so entirely in our place, as to feel that which we feel. But we can turn with confidence to Jesus who wept human tears, and bore our sorrows, and was in all points tempted like we are, and has taken his human experience with him into heaven. It’s not that others don’t care they are simple limited as to how to share into the depth of another person’s heart. We can call to others, but above all call to Jesus. Pastor Gary ><> 

13:5, “A righteous man hates lying, but a wicked man is loathsome and comes to shame.” Lying is sin therefore the righteous man would hate it, he hates all sin. He does not even want to be associated with lying therefore he choose his friends and work place wisely. He wants to bring no shame to himself or to that of others. But this is not so of the wicked man. He causes shame not only to himself but also to those who trusted him. And his shame is marked by his flawed character and lying tongue. He not only brings shame but also reproach and disgrace. While the righteous hate all that is false and all that is even tainted by falsehood, the wicked on the other hand loves to disgrace and put to shame. For the righteous and the wicked, conflict will be unavoidable therefore the righteous should never compromise their convictions. Pastor Gary ><>

12:4, “An excellent wife is the crown of her husband, but she who causes shame is like rottenness in his bones.”  The writer points out two kinds of wives both of which are far different from each other. The first is considered excellent, and you can find her described in Proverbs 31. She is the crown of her husband. With her words she encourages her husband, builds him up and offers him support (of course he has given her reason to do so). An I know sometimes ladies you would like to “crown” him. The other kind of wife is completely opposite, she causes shame by her weak character, immodest dress, and wasteful spending. She is like rottenness in his bones. Such a wife poisons her husband’s life, and deprives him of strength. She causes him to wear a sad countenance and a heavy heart. Are you your husband’s crown, or his curse? Husbands do your part! Pastor Gary ><>

11:4, “Riches do not profit in the day of wrath, but righteousness delivers from death.” Money may buy your way out of many things but not in the day of wrath! The writer teaches the only currency that will profit on that day will be righteousness. Paul in Romans wrote, “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness” (1:18). But for all who trust in Christ are therefore clothed in righteousness are delivered from God’s wrath. The writer wants each person to understand that on that day his only hope of escape will be righteousness. But those who hold onto their riches will find no escape. I know that day by appearance may seem to have passed us by or is not coming at all, but don’t be fooled that day is yet to come, and the wrath of God will follow. Christ’ righteousness, man’s only hope. Pastor Gary ><>

10:8, “The wise in heart will receive commands, but a prating fool will fall.” We find another contrast here and it is like so many others, wisdom and foolishness. The wise are always ready to receive commands. They recognize good advice and follow it. By doing so they can avoid bad deals, bad relationships, and overcome evil temptations. But the foolish man shows no display of wisdom. He is always exposing his folly. He does so with his loose lips, his evil actions, and his outright disrespect for those who would give him advice. This is what we would call a “know it all”, you have known at least one during your life time. You can’t tell them anything, well I guess you can and I know you tried, but they just won’t listen to you! And as long as the fool walks away from the advice of others he will fall sooner or later! But you resist saying, “I told you so.” Pastor Gary ><>

9:4-6, “Are you confused about life, don't know what's going on? Come with me, oh come, have dinner with me! I've prepared a wonderful spread—fresh-baked bread, roast lamb, carefully selected wines. Leave your impoverished confusion and live! Walk up the street to a life with meaning” (MSG). Wisdom invites all people to a feast. It’s God’s invitation to eternal life through His Son Jesus Christ. God has only left us one thing to do and that is come! His mercy, friendship, comfort, peace, strength, and hopes await all those who come. This is God’s invitation to forsake folly, and to walk in righteousness, resulting in eternal life. He calls us away from the practice of sin and into fellowship with Himself. All are invited but only those who come and partake of God’s invitation will find the true meaning of life. Please come to the only feast that can change your life! Pastor Gary <><

8:22-26, "The LORD possessed me at the beginning of His way, before His works of old. I have been established from everlasting, from the beginning, before there was ever an earth. When there were no depths I was brought forth, when there were no fountains abounding with water. Before the mountains were settled, before the hills, I was brought forth; While as yet He had not made the earth or the fields, or the primeval dust of the world.” Wisdom speaks of the time before creation in words that we might understand. Wisdom invaded time, and is prepared to meet man on the ground of reason, but eventually man must meet Wisdom on the ground of revelation. Wisdom is prepared to meet men where they are. Wisdom is reasonable, and willing to introduce herself to man where he exists. But all of us have to make the choice to follow Wisdom’s leadership. Pastor Gary ><>

7:26, “Such a woman has caused the downfall and destruction of a lot of men.” This chapter is about the foolishness of unfaithfulness. The warning is clear destruction is unlimited, and every man better stand guard. The first 5 verses beg for attention, they guide with wisdom, and offer protection against such a woman. She is seen here as a ruthless conqueror leaving behind a battle field scattered with corpses. The next 22 verses paint a picture of deep deception constructed to deceive and destroy you. I know your first thought, not me! Read verse 26 again. And just think of Samson, David, and Solomon victims of such thinking and suffered for it. Someone said an unguarded strength can become a double weakness. Someone else said, “Today’s thrill may lead to tomorrow’s ruin.” The Lord has provided a way out take it! Pastor Gary <><

6:30-32, People do not despise a thief if he steals to satisfy himself when he is starving. Yet when he is found, he must restore sevenfold; He may have to give up all the substance of his house. Whoever commits adultery with a woman lacks understanding; He who does so destroys his own soul.” The starving man steals, but the adulterer destroys his own soul. The thief has a reasonable motive but the adulterer has no such motive or reason for his crime. The adulterer in fact lacks reason or understanding acting with a brutish and stupid condition to which lust has reduced him. Lust will always displace right reason! The following verses seem to indicate that it is the temporal life which is referred to, but the meaning of the term may be extended to embrace not only physical loss of life, but also moral and spiritual loss! Turn to Jesus He can save you (John 8:4-5). Pastor Gary ><>

5:11-12, “And you mourn at last, when your flesh and your body are consumed, and say: "How I have hated instruction and my heart despised correction!”  The season after enjoying the pleasure of sin will be experienced by guilt, pain, and doom. Sin makes many promises but breaks them all. Sin always presents itself with strong temptations, opposing divine teachings, wise council, and even winning over a man’s own conscience. Sin will if not turned from consume a man’s heritage that he was meant to have from God through Jesus Christ. Sin leaves man unprepared, unequipped, and unable to take hold of all that God had purposed him for. Sin will not go unpunished although it may not come immediately, “you will mourn at last.” Love instruction and correction and experience the peace of God. Pastor Gary <>< 

4:25-27, “Let your eyes look straight ahead, and your eyelids look right before you. Ponder the path of your feet, and let all your ways be established. Do not turn to the right or the left; Remove your foot from evil.” Make straight, or level the path before taking a step. The sense is to remove any obstacle that would keep you from making a right moral decision. Weigh the consequences of a step, what will it cost, and who will it hurt before taking it! If you ponder first, and remove the obstacles your conduct will be correct and the result “all your ways will be established”. Now allow nothing to turn you from the right path neither adversity nor prosperity nor anything else that which can possess the power of temptation. We don’t have to make bad decisions we choose to when we disregard God’s Word. Pray “But deliver us from the evil one” (Matt.6:13). Pastor Gary <><

3:33-35, The curse of the Lord is on the house of the wicked, but He blesses the home of the just. Surely He scorns the scornful, but gives grace to the humble. The wise shall inherit glory, but shame shall be the legacy of fools.” These verses describe the blessings of the wise and the scorn of the wicked. There are three characteristics of those whom God blesses. First just, they do what is right to others honestly, fairly, and considerately. Second humble, they are aware of their own failures and unworthiness. And last wise, they have the attitude of inquiry towards God, desiring truth, knowledge, and doing His will. God will give them grace, bless their homes, and exalt them in the end. But the wicked reject the council of God, yield to sin, and scoff at sacred things. God will scoff at them, curse their homes, and hold His hand against their hopes. Shame will be their only legacy! Pastor Gary ><>

2:6 “For the Lord gives wisdom; From His mouth come knowledge and understanding.” The Lord gives wisdom to those who have a personal relationship with Him; it is His gift to them. They are known by their love for God and their love for others. They fear the Lord, worship, and serve Him. Wisdom is not acquired by any natural means but by prayer, purity, and obedience to God, for He is the giver. Wisdom is His inspiration impressed on the hearts of His people for Biblical understanding, delivering His message, and leading others to follow Him. God’s wisdom through men will conflict with the speculation of current and future events. God’s wisdom will oppose worldly people and all their ways. Wisdom from above will not bend to any selfish greed, or unholy pleasure. Know God and you will know and understand how to live! Pastor Gary <><

1:24-25, “Because I have called and you refused, I have stretched out my hand and no one regarded, because you disdained all my counsel, and would have none of my rebuke…”  To reject wisdom after many invitations brings many terrible consequences (26-33). Wisdom has called to each person and many refuse to listen, she has stretched out her hand and you have refused to take hold of it! Wisdom has given counsel and rebuke through preachers, churches, friends, parents, etc. but you have deliberately rejected all the counsel of God. The course of human perversity is to postpone with no intention of heeding anything that would be for their best interests. Yet God in His mercy continues to extend and reach, but He will reach no further than human opposition and resistance allow Him to! Pastor Gary <><

31:16-19, “She considers a field and buys it; From her profits she plants a vineyard. She girds herself with strength, and strengthens her arms. She perceives that her merchandise is good, and her lamp does not go out by night. She stretches out her hands to the distaff, and her hand holds the spindle.” Solomon writes about the model woman one that any man would do well to find. She is wise with money, sound in body, and smart in business. John Philips writes, “One cannot help thinking that Solomon's mind kept going back to the Shulamite. He had wanted her so badly, yet she had turned him down… If he hadn't played the fool with so many other women, he might have had her. He probably wished he had listened to his mother's sound advice.” When we listen to wrong voices we end up making bad choices that keep us from having what we really want! Pastor Gary ><>

30:18-20, There are three things which are too wonderful for me, Yes, four which I do not understand: The way of an eagle in the air, the way of a serpent on a rock, the way of a ship in the midst of the sea, and the way of a man with a virgin. This is the way of an adulterous woman: She eats and wipes her mouth, and says, ‘I have done no wickedness’." Some believe it is the mystery of the flight of an eagle, or the passage of a ship, both move without leaving any visible trace behind. All the evidence is gone which illustrates the adulterous wiping her mouth to leave no visible trace behind. She has sinned in secret, and there is no outward proof of her guilt, and she boldly denies it! But the mystery or secret of our actions are all known by God, and He will bring ever secret work into judgment. The only One who can wipe away our sin is Jesus Christ! Pastor Gary ><>

29:19, “A servant will not be corrected by mere words; For though he understands, he will not respond.” The point, mere words at times are not enough to correct a servant, a child, or an employee. This is not a lack of understanding, but a lack of obedience. Stubbornness is his attitude about many things in life including correction. He is fully aware of what is expected of him, “But he will not respond”, in word or deed. How many experiences have we had in talking to someone and come to find out it went in one ear and out the other. Each situation may call for different kinds of discipline but must at times go beyond mere words. The writer in not suggesting abuse but discipline that leads to correction, a response that shows you got through. I have heard, “Talk is cheap”, if that’s true why do we use so much of it expecting great results? Pastor Gary ><>

28:13, “He who covers his sins will not prosper, but whoever confesses and forsakes them will have mercy.” Covering is often used to hide sin, but it will not cure. Covering is only dress up. It’s like putting a band-aid on skin cancer or clothing over a disease. In fact, we cannot prosper from under the covering. But mercy will come as we admit, confess, and forsake our sin. This allows God to get to the sin and do His work through the blood of Christ. He forgives and has mercy on those who confess and forsake their sin. Confession is only complete by forsaking the sin, if not it is mockery. Someone said, “We’re sorry and repent, and then go on from day to day, just as we always went.” Just remember God will not be mocked. The sin that you try to cover God uncovers, but the sin you confess God covers with His mercy! Pastor Gary <><  

27:1, “Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring forth.” About 6,500 people die every day in the U.S. and 155,000 worldwide, tomorrow you’re not promised! Prepare as best we can for tomorrow but presume nothing (James 4:13-17). Almost everything (except God) is uncertain about tomorrow – yet we assume we will have opportunities tomorrow. How many of us have been caught by the surprises of the moment, such as the dreaded news about health, death, or loss. Certainty is now uncertain, plans change, and life is rearranged. Therefore, don’t boast about tomorrow take advantage of today. Today hug, kiss, and say I love you, or I am sorry, make that call, and send that card. How many “should haves” will remain just because tomorrow may never came. And above all know Christ today, tomorrow? Pastor Gary <><     

26:13-16, “The lazy man says, ‘There is a lion in the road! A fierce lion is in the streets!’ As a door turns on its hinges, so does the lazy man on his bed. The lazy man buries his hand in the bowl; it wearies him to bring it back to his mouth. The lazy man is wiser in his own eyes than seven men who can answer sensibly.” A man should never want to be guilty of being “lazy”. He is described as getting no further than his bed; using any excuse (a lion) to avoid work, expects others to feed him and even believes him wiser than all others. The door moves on its hinges and makes no progress beyond its own confined sphere of motion; so the slothful man turns himself on his bed from side to side, but never leaves it to do his work. The idle fool sets more value by his own judgment than by the sense of any number of wise men. Listen it’s not a lion it’s a job get up and go to work! Pastor Gary ><>

25:1, These also are proverbs of Solomon which the men of Hezekiah king of Judah copied.” We find here a picture of the days of Hezekiah; we see his scribes going through the ancient libraries and bringing together the long-forgotten sayings of Solomon. Nearly three hundred years had passed between the days of Solomon and the time of King Hezekiah. Hezekiah was a great king yet he was not blinded to the greater wisdom of King Solomon. Neither King Hezekiah nor his men were above learning from the wise sayings of Solomon. They refused to live on their own thoughts therefore found guidance and nourishment from the thoughts of others. Private thinking leads to narrowness unless it is enlarged by the wisdom of others. Hezekiah sought truth reestablished it and experienced revival, we should too! Pastor Gary <><

24:21-22, “My son, fear the LORD and the king; do not associate with those given to change; For their calamity will rise suddenly, and who knows the ruin those two can bring?”  John Philips said these two verses deal with fickleness. And He said, “Here Solomon pointed us to the vacillating person— the fair-weather friend, the man who trims his sails to the prevailing political or religious wind. Having no permanent loyalty, he is only concerned about his selfish interests and personal safety. We are to note the vacillating person's instability (v.21). We are also to note the vacillating person's insecurity (v.22). Solomon warned his son not to trust a man who has turned traitor once. He might betray his king again. Solomon traced unstable behavior to a failure to keep God in the picture. The fear of the Lord cancels out the fear of man, a major cause of vacillation.” Pastor Gary ><>

23:29-35, Who has woe? Who has sorrow? Who has contentions? Who has complaints? Who has wounds without cause? Who has redness of eyes? Those who linger long at the wine, those who go in search of mixed wine…” Nothing wrong with drinking alcohol, really! In a few words Solomon warns of the painful and disgraceful consequences. Note the words “drunkard” and “wine bibber” (Vs.20-21); they are descriptive of the deep disregard in which the victim of this vice is held by sober men! Indulgence soon tells on a man’s personal behavior, that he is mastered by what he puts into his mouth. By way of the intoxicating drink he enters on a path of utter ruin. The “drunkard” is seen by family and friends as sinking and failing. Such are the consequences of departure from sobriety. It is the first step which is the most foolish and the most avoidable. Pastor Gary ><>