The Admirable Ox?

by Stan Mitchell
oxenstare2.jpg“All at once he follows her, as an ox goes to the slaughter, or as a stag is caught fast,” (Proverbs 7:22, ESV).
The conventional wisdom thinks of a philanderer as a suave, sophisticated conqueror of women’s hearts. He is the object of considerable envy on the part of other men, the forbidden fruit of many intrigued women. He even fancies himself as the cool woman’s man.
So how does the Wise Man of Proverbs go about denting this image? He uses analogies to describe what the philanderer is really like. He compares this ladies’ man with such inelegant things as a “loaf of bread” (Proverbs 6:26) or a lumbering ox (Proverbs 7:22).
Have you ever heard of a sexy loaf of bread? How about an ox, dressed to the nines, ready to take on the night club circuit?
Solomon’s strategy is to tear aside the facade of a man who considers himself God’s gift to women and see the real person underneath.
He wants to divert the snidely admiring gaze, especially of the youth, trying hard to discern what it means to be a real man.
Cheating on loved ones is not cool. It’s tawdry and selfish, and it renders the participants the very opposite of what they imagine themselves to be. They are loaves of uninteresting bread, lumbering oxen, dragged along by the neck by forces stronger than their inner will.
Many times in Africa, I have seen an ox pulled along by a snip of a boy, barely six-years old. Do you feel a rope around your neck?

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