Forthright Magazine

7 practical points from Proverbs 1

Note: The following article comes from a little unfinished work I did several years ago on the book of Proverbs. I pulled it out because we’re encouraging people to read a chapter a day from the book during July — 31 chapters for 31 days. (You might want to get in on the project.)

The Missus has a WhatsApp group of 22 women reading together. Last month, we read the book of Psalms.

A good exercise would be to read it in the International English Bible, a version done by our brethren. They’ve published a free PDF of the book of Proverbs here.

  1. Proverbs is more than cute sayings and knowing stuff, 1-6. It means “skillful living,” making good decisions, making sense of it all. It lays out a “discerning plan” to the clueless.
  2. Wisdom starts with a right attitude toward God, 7. Recognize who he is, his power and greatness, his love and goodness. (See Ps 62.11-12, for example.) Fear is deep, abiding reverence, knowledge of what he can do, both to bless and to destroy. Solomon starts Proverbs with fearing God, and ends Ecclesiastes with the same over-arching truth, Eccl 12.13-14.
  3. The best setting for gaining wisdom is at home, from parents, 8-9. Start early! Wisdom dresses you up better than a tux. This is the life! 3.22.
  4. Wisdom rips the mask off of sin, 8-19. It shows that the enticement to evil is the path to self-destruction. Wisdom is knowing who to listen to.
  5. Sin promises a wild ride, riches, and belonging, 11-14. It ends in a spectacular crash.
  6. Wisdom packs a wallop, 23, 30. It often comes in the form of a rebuke, not pretty memes. Respond positively to that, and you got it.
  7. Wisdom has the last laugh, 25-27. After being spurned, it cannot be found when disaster strikes, 28. It cannot save when it has been rejected repeatedly.


J. Randal Matheny
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