The Proverb For The Day

 

 

24:23-25, “These things also belong to the wise: It is not good to show partiality in judgment. He who says to the wicked, ‘You are righteous,’ Him the people will curse; Nations will abhor him. But those who rebuke the wicked will have delight, and a good blessing will come upon them.” To discriminate persons in judgment is not good. The judge should be impartial as to the position of office, badge on the chest, or the family name. One wrong sentence does more harm than many bad examples. Once this happens the system is corrupt, the rights of the people suffer, and the public is in unrest. Those who judge must always prepare to bring a just sentence. Someone said, “For in causes of life and death, judge’s ought, as far as the law permits, in justice remember mercy, and to cast a severe eye upon the example, but a merciful eye upon the person.” Pastor Gary ><> 

23:1-3, “When you sit down to eat with a ruler, consider carefully what is before you; and put a knife to your throat if you are a man given to appetite. Do not desire his delicacies, for they are deceptive food.” The writer is warning about the danger of evil deals made over good meals. Therefore, he instructs carefulness as to whom you’re eating with and what the occasion is. The great temptation especially if you are prone to overeat is to ignore the danger and enter into a transaction that could compromise your convictions and wreck your moral nature. If you’re not careful you could end up putting yourself in the power of another man’s rule simple because you could not control your appetite. Our appetites not only have the potential to destroy our morals, but it also can destroy our health! Let’s not only be careful whom we eat with but how much we eat! Pastor Gary ><> 

22:20-21, “Have I not written to you excellent things of counsels and knowledge, That I may make you know the certainty of the words of truth, that you may answer words of truth to those who send to you?”  God’s written word is truth. It is the record of God’s revelation. God has spoken through His prophets, but most powerfully in His Son (Heb.1:1-2). The Bible is to be lifted above every other book and its message is to be impressed on the hearts of people as from God. With “certainty” God’s Word must be believed and practiced for it is truth and contains, “excellent things of counsel and knowledge.” It should also be taught “that you may answer words of truth…” If the “believer” cannot live in the certainty of truth, should he expect anyone else too? When people fail in truth, they confuse those who seek truth. If you’re a person of the Word live like it! Pastor Gary <>< 

21:13, “Whoever shuts his ears to the cry of the poor will also cry himself and not be heard.” If you want to be heard in your times of need you must also hear others in their times of need. No need seems important until it comes to your own. It’s then that you expect to be heard and some action taken to meet your need. But what about the voices of the poor that you turned a deaf ear to. Jesus said, “Give, and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom” (Luke 6:13). The characteristic of Jesus’ followers must be generosity and mercy. And James wrote, “For judgment is without mercy to the one who has shown no mercy. Mercy triumphs over judgment” (6:38). We are not to judge the poor but help them in their time of need. The writer is not talking about those who are lazy but those who are poor. Pastor Gary ><> 

20:17, “Bread gained by deceit is sweet to a man, but afterward his mouth will be filled with gravel.” There are very few people who think about the result of an action before they act. And the writer here warns that the result of dishonest gain will end badly. What may start out sweet will turn to “gravel”, meaning discomfort, disappointment, un-profitableness, injury, and failure. Gain by deceit has always had its players, it is seen by some as a short cut to wealth and fame. Deceitful people seem to experience a rush that pushes them toward their next victim, the writer said it “is sweet to a man” at first. Let me challenge all of us to consider the result of all of our actions before we do or say anything. That which may seem sweet at the time could very well turn to gravel. Pastor Gary ><> 

19:4, “Wealth makes many friends, but the poor is separated from his friend.” This truth is illustrated in the Lord's story of the prodigal son. If he had money in his pocket and a liberal hand to spend it, he had plenty of friends. When his funds gave out his friends got out, leaving him bankrupt and alone in the far country where famine, and starvation, stared him in the face. Their retreat is a revelation of a shallow friendship. In fact, it reveals further they were in it only for what they could get. The prodigal is now separated from his “friends”, or a more real look they have separated from him because he has no more resources and possesses no means. He would have been considered to entertain only fair-weather friends, and there are many of those around. The condition of a man’s bank account (rich or poor) should not be what friendships are built upon. Pastor Gary ><> 

18:13, “He who answers a matter before he hears it, it is folly and shame to him.” People are often too quick in forming their opinions. Such folly is that a superficial glance is enough to conclude a verdict about someone or something. We often do this with people, and things about them. We should be more generous with our opinions, give people every opportunity of showing good, and be ready to believe that there may be an unseen goodness that is slow to surface. People are also quick in forming their opinions about religion. Someone said, “A minimum of evidence and a maximum of prejudice contribute to form the faith of many people.” The same is equally true regarding unbelief! Our duty is not to rush to a hasty conclusion or retreat into paralyzing doubt, but “search the Scriptures” where conviction and truth can surely be found. And then you might give an answer! Pastor Gary ><>

17:1, Better is a dry morsel with quietness, than a house full of feasting with strife.” If you have ever been in a house filled with strife, then you already understand this Proverb. This house is full of strife, adversity, chiding, controversy, and disrespect. This house may have its feast, but it also has its fights. There seems always to be a high price paid for living the luxurious life. How many reality T.V. shows of the luxurious reveal strife today. They may live in the big house, but so many live in a big mess! The better life may not be as luxurious, but it will be filled with quietness, peace, rest, and happiness. It is a home of safety for family and friends. This kind of home provides a great example for all to follow. The secret of happiness lies in limiting our desires, not in increasing our substance. A “dry morsel” who would have thought it could be all a home needed! Pastor Gary ><> 

16:18-19, “Pride goes before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall. Better to be of a humble spirit with the lowly, than to divide the spoil with the proud.”  People full of pride believe their success is of their own doing. Pride is a demonstration of arrogance and an ungrateful attitude toward God for it is He from Whom all blessings come. Pride at its ugliest is when men overestimate their own importance and virtue, such men are looked upon with distaste rather than delight. There is no area of human thought and action where pride is not a dangerous guide, it always comes before a fall! But humility is where men will find success; he has a true view of his own heart, and others admire his genuine character. Humility is the gateway into the kingdom of God. It is the humble which is conscious of sin and seeks the Savior. Stay among the lowly! Pastor Gary ><> *13

15:31-32 (TLB), “If you profit from constructive criticism, you will be elected to the wise men’s hall of fame. But to reject criticism is to harm yourself and your own best interests.” Sound criticism teaches the true way of pleasing God which is really the only life worth living. God always has our best interests in mind and our friends for the most part do also. Our friends at times may fail to say it with tact but it could still be the truth. The truth will set you free but it might hurt first. Just because it hurts don’t reject the constructive work of criticism. Wise people profit from criticism. But you harm yourself when you reject criticism; it’s like a sick man rejecting medicine that might be his only cure. You may not be as good as you think you are – therefore welcome corrective criticism and join the hall of fame. Be grateful for such a friend! Pastor Gary <>< 

14:18-19, “The simple inherit folly, but the prudent are crowned with knowledge. The evil will bow before the good, and the wicked at the gates of the righteous.” A day is coming where everything is turned right-side up, putting things back in order. The foolish, wicked, good, and prudent will be put back in their rightful places. The simple takes possession of folly, feeds on it, leads others into it, and enjoys it. But the prudent are crowned with knowledge, as one writer said, “The wise is the only king.” And in the end every knee will bow to the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords. The final victory of good over evil is set forth here. But for now, the wicked may appear successful although it will not last, they will in the end bow to the righteous King. Be careful not to look at the way things are now but how they will be. 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 workplace 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 ><> 

12:15, The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, but he who heeds counsel is wise.” This is a recurring truth throughout Proverbs! The fool sees from one perspective alone, his own, therefore his path will always lead downward. When our way is right in our own eyes and it is the wrong way, we are certainly on the way down. The fool imagines himself to be humble when he is proud, generous when he is selfish, spiritual when he is worldly, and a son of God when he is a child of darkness. He opposes all instruction and correction, and his attitude is that of rejection. He is so far down in his thinking he may never come back up. But those who heed counsel are wise and, on their way, upward. The wise is opposite of all that is true of the fool. He welcomes counsel and his attitude is of the humble and he desires all the lessons of the Divine teacher. Be wise! Pastor Gary <>< 

11:27-28, “He who earnestly seeks good finds favor, but trouble will come to him who seeks evil. He who trusts in his riches will fall, But the righteous will flourish like foliage.” Both the good and evil seek, and both will be rewarded, favor for good and trouble for evil. It seems that everyone would seek good, but how we see so often the pursuit of evil by many. If there is consistent trouble in your life you might want to question what you’re seeking. The principle of consequence will not change, but what you seek can be changed. Every action comes with consequences. If you want the favor of God which is all the elements of His blessings trust Him and seek good. If you trust your riches you will fall. But if evil is all you seek expect trouble at every turn. You chose what you seek but God chooses what you get! Pastor Gary <>< 

10:9, He who walks with integrity walks securely, but he who perverts his ways will become known.” Integrity is a rare quality these days, but for those who have it, they walk “securely.” They honestly and earnestly seek guidance from the Lord. They walk “securely” because, God leads them where they go, teaches them what to do and how to act, in all relationships and circumstances. Instead of moving to the right or the left they walk straight on the path of justice, purity, and righteousness. They walk “securely” because on this path they will find no snares of sin or the stumbling blocks of folly scattered about. But this is not true of the other; he “perverts” his ways. His path is filled with all the snares of sin and folly. He stumbles and gets entangled almost with every step, and he will be known by his foolishness. Walk with integrity and “securely! Pastor Gary ><> 

9:9, “If you have good sense, instruction will help you to have even better sense. And if you live right, education will help you to know even more.” The context of these truths is wisdom. Wisdom is beyond knowledge it’s how to apply knowledge to circumstances. There seems to be two types of people those that want to know and those that think they know. And they know just enough to feel the pride of superiority and self-conceit. But the truly wise man will be the first to see the limits of his knowledge and welcome more. There are many new things to grasp for those who are ready. He is even willing to listen to and learn about the unpleasant things of his life. His goal is to learn, change, and grow into the man God is shaping him to become! Knowledge is what you learn by looking around; wisdom is what you learn by looking up. Look up! Pastor Gary <>< 

8:1-4, “With great understanding, Wisdom is calling out as she stands at the crossroads and on every hill, beside the way, where the paths meet. She cries out by the gates, at the entry of the city, at the entrance of the doors: ‘To you, O men, I call, and my voice is to the sons of men’.” Christ a one-word description for wisdom. If you follow Christ you will have good sense, understanding, instruction, knowledge, sound judgment, and you will experience happiness and life. The struggle is to get people to believe by faith in Christ and then obey Him! Wisdom is calling (Luke 19:10) but people are not hearing with the intent to obey. And their actions are noticeable when they do, as well as when they do not. Read the rest of the chapter and see for yourself what life lived in Christ promises. God’s Word is more than information its transformation for those who follow Christ. Pastor Gary <>< 

7:10-12, And there a woman met him, with the attire of a harlot, and a crafty heart. She was loud and rebellious; her feet would not stay at home. At times she was outside, at times in the open square, lurking at every corner…” (Read on). All 27 verses are the unfolding tragedy of temptation leading to moral deception. The temptation of the harlot’s attire and heart is filled with lust. Her activity was loud, lose, and looking, she knows what she wants and so does any that sees her. She can’t be missed and that’s her goal. She has set the trap and she is the bait – her victim will be kissed, reasoned with, and invited to her bed, and promised pleasure beyond his wildest dreams. He does not realize that his sin will one day be exposed and that his dreams will become nightmares! Reason tells you to go in, wisdom tells you to run away, which one will you listen to? Run! Pastor Gary ><> 

6:12-15, “A worthless person, a wicked man, walks with a perverse mouth; He winks with his eyes, He shuffles his feet, He points with his fingers; Perversity is in his heart, he devises evil continually, he sows discord. Therefore, his calamity shall come suddenly; suddenly he shall be broken without remedy.” This is a man that cast off all restraint; he has joined the ranks of the wicked. His decision to join the wicked has control now of his mouth, eyes, feet, hands, and heart. All his words and actions are bent toward deception, discord, and he even takes pleasure in doing evil. This man has silenced the redeeming voice of God and now he is without remedy, no medicine, cure, or deliverance for his soul. God is not mocked; if a man sows to the flesh he will reap corruption (Galatians 6:8). Be careful who you walk with, you may not come back! Pastor Gary <>< 

5:15-17, Drink water from your own cistern, and running water from your own well. Should your fountains be dispersed abroad, streams of water in the streets? Let them be only your own, and not for strangers with you.” We find here the counterpart of the earlier warning for the lips of the immoral woman (V.5-6). The husband and wife is the relationship God chooses to bless! And men we need to take note of our wife! She is described as a cistern and spring, which was highly esteemed. The wife therefore is to be the husband’s unique delight, the source of pleasure, and the faithful origin of the family. She is to be “your own” – which is in contrast of the immoral woman’s love. You are to be only your wife’s lover and she must be your only lover also. God will bless the man and woman that take their wedding vows seriously. It honors God and He in turn honors you! Pastor Gary <>< 

4:6, “Do not forsake her [Wisdom], and she will preserve you; Love her, and she will keep you.” Wisdom is not just about what to do but it also includes what to avoid. There is so much in this life that tempts us to stray from God. Therefore, we are instructed not to forsake wisdom. To forsake is to loosen, relinquish, or forget the wise teachings in your life. There is a promise given to those who love wisdom: she will “preserve” and “keep” you. Wisdom will guard, protect, and maintain what wise teachings provide for you throughout life. Love wisdom as you would a friend, obey wisdom as you would a parent and you will have the good sense to turn away from all unrighteousness and the overwhelming results. Love wisdom and win turn from her and you will lose your way, and possible your life! Pastor Gary <>< 

3:3-4, Let not mercy (love) and truth forsake you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart, and so find favor and high esteem in the sight of God and man.” Love and truth are to be characteristics of men. The first and second commandment is that we love God first with our all, and that we love our neighbor. When we fail to love our neighbor we will also fail to love God. Love toward God should invoke worship, praise, and service. And love toward others should invoke outward help, forgiveness of wrongs, sympathy, thoughtfulness, and spiritual growth.  And truth should invoke stability, faithfulness, integrity, and confidence in all a man promises. It is through love and truth that man finds, “favor and high esteem in the sight of God and man.” The best way to not forsake love and truth, practice them every day! Pastor Gary <>< 

2:9, Then (with wisdom) you will understand righteousness and justice, equity and every good path.” Wisdom not only benefits us in our relationships with men but also with God. It is through wisdom that we can understand and travel every good path that leads to righteousness, justice, and equity. When we travel on the good path we please God for it is a path already being traveled by Him, and designed for us. Every course of action of which goodness is characteristic is on this path. But the path that we choose away from God is the wrong path and it leads us away from righteousness, justice, and equity. Our relationship cannot be right with God or with men as long as we travel on the wrong path. So many people wonder why their life is such a mess; they might question which path they are traveling! A course correction may be all that’s needed. Pastor Gary <>< 

1:3-6, To receive the instruction of wisdom, Justice, judgment, and equity; To give prudence to the simple, to the young man knowledge and discretion--A wise man will hear and increase learning, and a man of understanding will attain wise counsel, to understand a proverb and an enigma, the words of the wise and their riddles.”  The writer starts right off giving his reason for writing the Proverbs. Yet most start out their day without reading them or anything from God’s Word! To read is to receive wisdom, to gain knowledge, discretion, and it increases understanding. Every day, we will be confronted with conflicting choices, unwanted temptations, and a surplus of distractions. Satan hopes every day that you do not have time to be in God’s Word. Satan attacks, distracts and destroyers, But Solomon writes and invites all to be wise! Start a new year in God’s Word. Pastor Gary ><>

31:26, She opens her mouth with wisdom, and on her tongue is the law of kindness.” We find in verses 10-31 the characteristics of a Christian woman. And in verse 26 we find her to full of wisdom and she speaks with kindness. She is not just a good wife but she guides her family with wisdom. She knows the law of the Lord and therefore she knows where to guide her family for lasting joy, and eternal life. She avoids gossip, slander, and idle talk, but gives sound advice, and grace to all who listen to her. Her speech agrees with the law and her actions follow her mouth. Kindness is the law she lives by and it’s what tempers her actions and reactions in all her relationships and circumstances throughout her life. If you have such a wife, you have found someone who will bless you all the days of your life. And you should bless her! Pastor Gary <>< 

30:21-23, For three things the earth is perturbed, Yes, for four it cannot bear up: For a servant when he reigns, A fool when he is filled with food, A hateful woman when she is married, and a maidservant who succeeds her mistress.”  The writer points out four things (many) that are unbearable, they are upside down, out of place. First, the servant in authority, this belongs to the wise and strong. The feeble in mind and heart are the wrong men in the wrong place of power. Second, the self-satisfied fool, he smirks in desperate times, basks in ease, and is unaware of true conditions! Third, the ill-tempered wife, she is out of place in any home, there is no delight or sweetness where she lives! And last, an ambitious maidservant who obtains her mistress’s property either by evil or right, and then makes bad use of it. Beware of things out of place! Gary French ><> 

29:18, “Where there is no revelation, the people cast off restraint; But happy is he who keeps the law.” This nation rejects the revelation of God, rejects the power of prayer, and is busy trying to change the laws of God. True life is found only in Jesus Christ, but when men reject God’s revelation and the only way to salvation, they have no knowledge of Him. To reject God leads to disobedience, unbelief, and spiritual separation. To be separated from God is to be destitute of all His blessings and favor, of all that brings joy and happiness, and of all that God has done to bring man eternal life. Without eternal life man is perishing day by day and death will be his final reward. Where the Word and will of God are unknown there is a plunge morally! But “happy” is the man that walks in the revelation of God and lives in obedience to Jesus Christ! Pastor Gary <>< 

28:27, “He who gives to the poor will not lack, but he who hides his eyes will have many curses.” We must consider that the Lord is fully aware of our giving as well as are keeping. If God can investigate the heart of a man He certainly can look into a man’s wallet, or bank account. God knows the worth of all men and He considers them all worth helping. God has set forth a principle, “it is more blessed to give than to receive” and each time He gives us an opportunity to give, do we, when we do, we believe Him. And the second principle brought to light here is that you reap what you sow. When we give to the poor we will be blessed and helped in our time of need should that time come. But if we hide our eyes, ignore, and show a lack of compassion the same shall return to us. The point is, it is foolish to expect help when we refuse to give help. “He” sees you! Pastor Gary ><> 

27:18, “Whoever keeps the fig tree will eat its fruit; so he who waits on his master will be honored.” We see here a picture of faithful service. And most of us by occupation serve in some form or other. God requires faithfulness, we who are stewards be found faithful (Colossians 3:23-25). Those whose character and example we admire are faithful in their entire house (Hebrews 3:5). And if we care to be respected, we must maintain a good work ethic that will stand the test of time and pass any inspection throughout life. Faithfulness does have its reward in due time, “Whoever keeps the fig tree will eat its fruit.” We are the servants of Christ, we owe Him everything, and we should offer Him our will, our hearts, and the service of our lives. He will generously regard what we do for others as something we do for Him. He will not disappoint us, stay faithful! Pastor Gary ><> 

26:27, Whoever digs a pit will fall into it and he who rolls a stone will have it roll back on him.” Each of these acts is done to trap, deceive, and swindle the unsuspecting. People who are a part of these deceiving traps are partners with the devil, and like him there is a pit for him and his workers. So, in the end the devil and his workers are preparing a pit for their own destruction! The principle is that each sin brings its own punishment. If the foolish sinner is left to himself, he will certainly reap the fatal consequences of wickedness. Sin is naturally fatal, and it seems men have failed to see it, or see it and just do not care, for whatever a man sows he will reap. The Jews rejected Christ and laid snares for Him and in the end watched Him die, but their rejection of Christ was their own pit! The world continues to dig a pit by rejecting Christ and that also will lead to its own ruin. Pastor Gary <>< 

25:13, “Like the cold of snow in time of harvest Is a faithful messenger to those who send him, for he refreshes the soul of his masters.” If a man were wealthy enough, he would often refresh the guests at his table with drinks iced by snow that was brought at enormous cost and great speed from distant snow-clad peaks. Perhaps Solomon did the same, for the snowy summit of mount Hermon was not very far away. But such a refreshment must have been as rare as it would have been relished. In his proverb Solomon was likening a faithful messenger to ice-cold drinks! A messenger would be very important bringing news that could encourage and refresh or warn of coming danger. Today we celebrate Jesus’ birthday a refreshing message at great cost to God, it cost Him His one and only Son, but the gift of His Son brings hope, peace, joy, and the love of God to each that will receive His Son, Jesus Christ by faith. John 3:16. May you be refreshed by the “Good News” of Jesus Christ! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. Pastor Gary ><>