Tuesday, 17 August 2010 • 16:53:50 +1000

P ROVERBS  

I

N T R O D U C T I O N

The book of PROVERBS is a collection of moral and religious teachings in the form of sayings and proverbs. Much of it has to do with practical, everyday concerns. It begins with the reminder that “To have knowledge, you must first have reverence for the LORD”, and then goes on to deal with matters not only of religious morality, but also of common sense and good manners. Its many short sayings reveal the insights of ancient Israelite teachers about what a wise person will do in certain situations. Some of these concern family relationships, others, business dealings. Some deal with matters of etiquette in social relationships, and others with need of self-control. Much is said about such qualities as humility, patience, respect for the poor, and loyalty to friends.

THE

THIRTY WISE
S
A Y I N G S

22

950 BC — Proverbs 22: A Good Name is More Desirable Than Great Riches
17

Pay attention and listen to the sayings of the wise; apply your heart to what I teach, 18 for it is pleasing when you keep them in your heart and have all of them ready on your lips. 19 I want you to put your trust in the LORD; that is why I am going to tell them to you now. 20 I have written down thirty sayings for you. They contain knowledge and good advice, 21 teaching you true and reliable words, so that you can give sound answers to him who sent you.

–1–
22 Do not take advantage of the poor just because you can; do not take advantage of those who stand helpless in court. 23 The LORD will argue their case for them and threaten the life of anyone who threatens theirs.

–2–
Do not make friends with people who have hot, violent tempers. You might learn their habits and not be able to change.
24 25

–3–
Do not promise to be responsible for someone else's debts. should be unable to pay, they will take away even your bed.
26 27

If you

–4–
28

Never move an old property line that your ancestors established.

–5–
Show me someone who does a good job, and I will show you someone who is better than most and worthy of the company of kings.
29

950 BC — Proverbs 23: When You Sit to Eat with a Ruler, Consider Diligently what is Before You;

23

–6–
When you sit to dine with a ruler, keep in mind who he is, a 2 and put a knife to your throat if you are given to gluttony. 3 Do not grave his delicacies, for that food is deceptive.

–7–
Be wise enough not to wear yourself out trying to get rich. 5 Your money can be gone in a flash, as if it had grown wings and flown away like an eagle.
4

–8–
Do not eat at the table of a stingy person, do not crave his delicacies; for he is the kind of man who is always thinking about the cost. “Come on and have some more”, he says, but his heart is not with you. What he thinks is what he really is. 8 You will vomit up what you have eaten, and all your flattery will be wasted.
6 7

–9–
9

Do not speak to a fool, for he will scorn the wisdom of your words.

–10–
Never move an old property line or take over land owned by orphans. 11 The LORD is their powerful defender, and He will argue their case against you.
10

–11–
12

Apply your heart to instruction and your ears to words of knowledge.

–12–
Do not withhold discipline from a child; if you punish him with the rod, he will not die. 14 Punish him with the rod and save his soul from death.
13

–13–
My child, if your heart is wise, then my heart will be glad. inmost being will rejoice when I hear you speaking words of wisdom.
15 16

My

–14–
Do not be envious of sinful people; let reverence for the LORD be the concern of your life. 18 If it is, you have a bright future.
17

–15–
Listen, my child, be wise and give serious thought to the way you live. 20 Do not associate with people who drink too much wine or stuff themselves with food. 21 Drunkards and gluttons will be reduced to poverty. If all you do is eat and sleep, you will soon be wearing rags.
19

–16–
22 Listen to your father; without him you would not exist. When your mother is old, show her your appreciation. 23 Truth, wisdom, learning, and good sense — these are worth paying for, but too valuable for you to sell. 24 A righteous person's parents have good reason to be happy. You can take pride in a wise child. 25 Let your father and mother be proud of you; give your mother that happiness.

–17–
Pay close attention, my son, and let my life be your example. 27 Prostitutes and immoral women are a deadly trap. 28 Like a bandit she lies in wait, and multiplies the unfaithful among men.
26

–18–
Show me people who drink too much, who have to try out fancy drinks, and I will show you people who are miserable and sorry for themselves, always causing trouble and always complaining. Their eyes are bloodshot, and they have bruises that could have been avoided. 31 Do not let wine tempt you, even though it is rich red, and it sparkles in the cup, and it goes down smoothly. 32 The next morning you will feel as if you had been bitten by a poisonous snake. 33 Weird sights will appear before your eyes, and you will not be able to think or speak clearly. 34 You will feel as if you were out on the ocean, seasick, swinging high up in the rigging of a tossing ship. 35 “I must have been hit”, you will say; “I must have been beaten up, but I do not remember it. Why can't I wake up? I need another drink”.
29-30

950 BC — Proverbs 24: Do Not be Envious of Evil Men; Neither Desire to be with Them:

24

–19–
Do not be envious of evil people, and do not try to make friends with them. 2 Causing trouble is all they ever think about; every time they open their mouth someone is going to be hurt.

–20–
Homes are built on the foundation of wisdom and understanding. b 4 Where there is knowledge, the rooms are furnished with valuable, beautiful things.
3

–21–
Being wise is better than being strong;c yes, knowledge is more important than strength. 6 After all, you must make careful plans before you fight a battle, and the more good advice you get, the more likely you are to win.
5

–22–
7 Wise sayings are too deep for stupid people to understand. They have nothing to say when important matters are being discussed.

–23–
If you are always planning evil, you will earn a reputation as a troublemaker. 9 Any scheme a fool thinks up is sinful. People hate a person who has nothing but scorn for others.
8

–24–
If you are weak in a crisis, you are weak indeed. (But be of good courage, and GOD shall strengthen your heart).
10

–25–
11 Do not hesitate to rescue someone who is about to be executed unjustly. 12 You may say that it is none of your business, but GOD knows and judges your motives. He keeps watch on you; He knows. And He will reward you according to what you do.

–26–
My child, eat honey; it is good. And just as honey from the comb is sweet on your tongue, 14 you may be sure that wisdom is good for the soul. Get wisdom and you have a bright future.
13

–27–
Do not be like the wicked who scheme to rob honest people or to take away their homes. 16 No matter how often honest people fall, they always get up again; but disaster destroys the wicked.
15

–28–
Do not be glad when your enemies meet disaster, and do not rejoice when they stumble. 18 The LORD will know if you are gloating, and He will not like it; and then maybe He won't punish them.
17

–29–
19 Do not let evil people worry you; do not be envious of them. wicked person has no future — nothing to look forward to. 20

A

–30–
Have reverence for the LORD, my child, and honour the king. Have nothing to do with people who rebel against them; 22 such people could be ruined in a moment. Do you realise the disaster that GOD or the king can cause?
21

F
23

U R T H E R

  S

A Y I N G S

 OF THE W

I S E

The wise have also said these things: It is wrong for judges to be prejudiced. 24 If they pronounce a guilty person innocent, they will be cursed and hated by everyone. 25 Judges who punish the guilty, however, will be prosperous and enjoy a good reputation. 26 An honest answer is a sign of true friendship. 27 Do not build your house and establish a home until your fields are ready, and you are sure that you can earn a living. 28 Do not give evidence against others without good reason, or say misleading things about them. 29 Do not say, “I'll do to them just what they did to me! I'll get even with them!” 30 I walked through the fields and vineyards of a lazy, stupid person. 31 They were full of thorn bushes and overgrown with weeds. The stone wall around them had fallen down. 32 I looked at this, thought about it, and learned a lesson from it: 33 Go ahead and take your nap; go ahead and sleep. Fold your hands and rest awhile, 34 but while you are asleep, poverty will attack you like an armed robber.

FOOTNOTES a Proverbs 23:1 — keep . . . is; [ or ] notice carefully what is before you. b Proverbs 24:3 — Homes . . . understanding; [ or ] It takes care to lay the foundations of a house, and skill to build it. c Proverbs 24:5 — [ Some Ancient Translations ] Being wise is better than being strong; [ Hebrew ] A person is wise in strength. CROSS REFERENCES 1. Proverbs 24:33, 34 — Pr. 6.10, 11.

IT  IS BETTER  TO DIE  AS 
A  FREE  MAN,  THAN  TO 

LIVE 

AS 

SLAVE 

UNDER  THE  RULE  OF  A  F
A L S E

 

G O D

!