Proverbs 4-6

Wednesday Evening Bible Study

June 30, 2004

Proverbs 4

:1-9 Father to Son

:4 He taught me also …

What follows (vs. 4-9) are David’s words to Solomon.


When I was a boy of 14, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around.  But when I got to be 21, I was astonished at how much the old man had learned in seven years.

-- Mark Twain

:7 Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom

Wisdom isn’t just knowing facts, it’s knowing what to do with them. 


One day while my daughter-in-law and I were chatting on the phone, her 9-year-old son, Aaron, had a problem with the VCR. Aaron is hearing-impaired and so he signed to his mother that the VCR needed fixing. She, in turn, signed to him that he would have to wait until she was finished talking. Shortly after that my daughter-in-law's doorbell rang and she hurriedly brought our conversation to an end.

She went to the door and there was Aaron. Knowing how extended some of his mother's phone conversations could be, he had gone outside and rung the doorbell. He had never heard it in his life, but he knew how to use the device as a problem solver.

-- Betty Sowder, Joplin, MO, Christian Reader, "Lite Fare."

Wisdom isn’t something you gain through education, it’s what you get from paying attention to God.

:10-19 Safety in wisdom

:12 When thou goest, thy steps shall not be straitened

straitenedyatsar – to bind, be distressed, be cramped; “hampered”

:18 But the path of the just is as the shining light

God’s desire is that we grow in Him.

(2 Cor 3:18 KJV) But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.

Don’t let yourself become stagnant.

(Rev 3:14-19 NLT)  "Write this letter to the angel of the church in Laodicea. This is the message from the one who is the Amen--the faithful and true witness, the ruler of God's creation: {15} "I know all the things you do, that you are neither hot nor cold. I wish you were one or the other! {16} But since you are like lukewarm water, I will spit you out of my mouth! {17} You say, 'I am rich. I have everything I want. I don't need a thing!' And you don't realize that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked. {18} I advise you to buy gold from me--gold that has been purified by fire. Then you will be rich. And also buy white garments so you will not be shamed by your nakedness. And buy ointment for your eyes so you will be able to see. {19} I am the one who corrects and disciplines everyone I love. Be diligent and turn from your indifference.

:20-27 Take care to obey

:23 Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life.

Solomon gives us four things to pay attention to:

1.  heart

It all starts in the heart.

(Luke 6:43-45 KJV) For a good tree bringeth not forth corrupt fruit; neither doth a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. {44} For every tree is known by his own fruit. For of thorns men do not gather figs, nor of a bramble bush gather they grapes. {45} A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is evil: for of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaketh.

Take time to press in to the Lord.  Draw near to Him.  He’s the one who can change and renew your heart.  Especially take time to love, adore, praise, and thank Him.  If you were to make a recording of all the things that come from your mouth, would they tend to be words of gracefulness and thanksgiving, or complaining and griping?  Make a choice to praise God.

:24 Put away from thee a froward mouth

2. mouth

Watch what comes out of your mouth.

Words can build people up or ruin them.

(James 3:5 NLT) So also, the tongue is a small thing, but what enormous damage it can do. A tiny spark can set a great forest on fire.

(Prov 12:18 NLT) Some people make cutting remarks, but the words of the wise bring healing.

:25 Let thine eyes look right on

3. eyes

Be careful what you look at.

(Job 31:1 KJV) I made a covenant with mine eyes; why then should I think upon a maid?

:26 Ponder the path of thy feet, and let all thy ways be established.

4. feet

Be careful where you go.

Proverbs 5

:1-6 Watch for the strange woman

:3 For the lips of a strange woman drop as an honeycomb

strange womanzuwr – to be strange, be a stranger; strange woman, prostitute, harlot

Solomon gave wise advice to his son, but in the end he didn’t follow his own advice.

(1 Ki 11:1 KJV) But king Solomon loved many strange women …

And when he was old, these were the ones that turned his heart away from the Lord.

:4 But her end is bitter as wormwood, sharp as a twoedged sword.

Immorality is sweet at first, but later it’s bitter.

:7-14 Penalties for sexual impurity

:10 Lest strangers be filled with thy wealth

Money going to prostitutes


:11 And thou mourn at the last, when thy flesh and thy body are consumed,

Sexually transmitted diseases are nothing new.

:12 And say, How have I hated instruction, and my heart despised reproof;

I’ve cried this a few times when I’ve gotten into something that I knew I shouldn’t have done.

:15-20 Be satisfied at home

:15 Drink waters out of thine own cistern

The saying goes, “The grass looks greener on the other side”. But the truth is, the grass is greenest where it’s watered.

Don’t be looking at someone else’ grass. Take care of your own lawn. Part of “lawn-care” involves what you say to each other.

Husbands are to wash their wives with the water of their words.

(Eph 5:25-28 KJV) Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; {26} That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, {27} That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish. {28} So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself.


Say Something Nice
A husband and wife are getting ready for bed. The wife is standing in front of a full-length mirror taking a hard look at herself. “You know,” she says, “I look in the mirror, and I see an old woman.” “My face is all wrinkled, every part of my body is hanging out a mile.” “I’ve got fat legs, and my arms are all flabby.” She turns to her husband and says; “Tell me something positive to make me feel better about myself.” He studies hard for a moment thinking about it and then says in a soft, thoughtful voice; “Well, ... there’s nothing wrong with your eyesight.” Services for the husband will be held Saturday morning at 10:30 at Forest Lawn.
That’s not the way to do it.

:18 Let thy fountain be blessed: and rejoice with the wife of thy youth.

Be satisfied with your own wife.

God’s design is that your sexual needs be met with your spouse.

(1 Cor 7:1-3 NLT)  Now about the questions you asked in your letter. Yes, it is good to live a celibate life. {2} But because there is so much sexual immorality, each man should have his own wife, and each woman should have her own husband. {3} The husband should not deprive his wife of sexual intimacy, which is her right as a married woman, nor should the wife deprive her husband.
Sex within marriage is one of God’s ways of avoiding “fornication” or, immorality.

:21-23 God sees and repays

:21 For the ways of man are before the eyes of the LORD

God sees what you’re doing. He loves you so much that He can’t take His eyes off of you.

Proverbs 6

:1-5 Business deals

:1 My son, if thou be surety for thy friend, if thou hast stricken thy hand with a stranger,

Be careful about the business deals you get into.

Co-signing on a loan for a friend will end in disaster.

Don’t get into business deals with strangers.

:3 Do this now, my son, and deliver thyself

Get out of the deal as quick as possible.

:6-11 Work hard

:7 Which having no guide, overseer, or ruler,

Do you need someone to have to tell you what to do? Do you need a boss constantly watching over you to keep you working?

(Col 3:22-25 NLT) You slaves must obey your earthly masters in everything you do. Try to please them all the time, not just when they are watching you. Obey them willingly because of your reverent fear of the Lord. {23} Work hard and cheerfully at whatever you do, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people. {24} Remember that the Lord will give you an inheritance as your reward, and the Master you are serving is Christ. {25} But if you do what is wrong, you will be paid back for the wrong you have done. For God has no favorites who can get away with evil.


Oz Guiness, an astute observer of the American scene says,

“The main problem with American Christians is not that they aren’t where they should be, but they are not what they should be right where they are. Doctors, businessmen, teachers, etc.”
-- Living by the Book Workbook, by Howard Hendricks

:11 So shall thy poverty come as one that travelleth

(Prov 6:11 NLT)  and poverty will pounce on you like a bandit; scarcity will attack you like an armed robber.

The old parable of the ant and the grasshopper – the grasshopper sang the song, “The world owes me a living”. All summer long the ant worked hard storing up for the winter while the grasshopper played. When the winter came, the grasshopper almost died while the ant relaxed in his warm house.


Work hard

Here is an interesting letter to the editor of the Los Angeles Times concerning work:

There has been a lot of criticism of people who do not want to work, especially when they are collecting welfare. Most people prefer to work and that’s fine, but others may prefer to sit in the park, go to the beach, or observe the wonders of nature. Now those who dislike working should not be penalized by depriving them of the benefits of our society. There is plenty for all. Everyone does not feel the same way about working. Some have built-in feelings about it that makes it very unpleasant for them to work, especially when it is required. Now this could be looked upon as a handicap. We don’t punish others with handicaps. Our society provides for them and should do the same for those with a natural dislike for work. Why can’t we live and let live with each to his own style?

This classified ad in the San Francisco Chronicle was really interesting. Under "Wanted" it says:

Executive age 22-80. Job entails sitting with feet on desk from 10 am to 4:30 pm watching others work. Must be willing to play golf every other afternoon. Salary starts at $1,000 a week.

But now wait a minute, there's this footnote:

We don't really have this job open. We just thought you'd like to see in print what everybody is applying for.

-- Associated Press 6-20-90

Paul wrote,
(2 Th 3:7-12 NLT)  For you know that you ought to follow our example. We were never lazy when we were with you. {8} We never accepted food from anyone without paying for it. We worked hard day and night so that we would not be a burden to any of you. {9} It wasn't that we didn't have the right to ask you to feed us, but we wanted to give you an example to follow. {10} Even while we were with you, we gave you this rule: "Whoever does not work should not eat." {11} Yet we hear that some of you are living idle lives, refusing to work and wasting time meddling in other people's business. {12} In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, we appeal to such people--no, we command them: Settle down and get to work. Earn your own living.

:12-19 The deceitful man

:12 A naughty person

naughty[email protected]‘al –worthless, good for nothing, unprofitable, wicked

:16 These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are …

These sum up the things he’s just been talking about. This “six” “seven” thing is apparently just a way of speaking to get your attention.

:19 …he that soweth discord among brethren.

Watch out who you hang out with.

(1 Cor 15:33 NIV) Do not be misled: "Bad company corrupts good character."

:20-24 Commandments keep you from trouble

:20 forsake not the law of thy mother:

We’ve seen Solomon talking about a son paying attention to his father’s advice. But a mother’s advice is pretty important too …


Throughout the centuries, mothers have been giving their children plenty of good advice and notable quotes. Here's just a small sampling:

ALBERT EINSTEIN'S MOTHER: "But it's your senior picture. Can't you do something about your hair? Styling gel, mousse, something...?"
THOMAS EDISON'S MOTHER: "Of course I'm proud that you invented the electric light bulb. Now turn it off and get to bed!"
BARNEY'S MOTHER: "I realize strained plums are your favorite, Barney, but you're starting to look a little purple."
JONAH'S MOTHER: "That's a nice story, but now tell me where you've really been for the last three days."

Mothers are VERY important.


“Somebody” said.....
....a mother is an unskilled laborer. “Somebody” never gave a squirmy infant a bath. know how to be a mother by instinct. “Somebody” never took a three-year old shopping.
....that “good” mothers never yell at their kids. “Somebody’s” child never sent a baseball through a neighbor’s picture window.
....a mother can find all the answers to her child-rearing questions in books. “Somebody” never had a child stuff beans in his nose.
....your mother knows you love her, so you don’t have to tell her. “Somebody” isn’t a mother.

:25-35 Pain of adultery

:29 So he that goeth in to his neighbour's wife

Don’t play with fire.

It starts with “lust” in your heart (vs. 25).  It ends with adultery (vs. 29).

Pornography, swim suit issues, etc. aren’t just harmless past times.  They lead somewhere.

At the very least, it pollutes your mind toward women.
At the most you will end up devastated, and devastating the people that care about you.

:31 But if he be found, he shall restore sevenfold

A thief was supposed to repay what he stole.

:32 But whoso committeth adultery with a woman lacketh understanding

You can’t make repayment for adultery. How can you ever make it right?

:33 A wound and dishonour shall he get

Make a list of what would happen if you committed this sin. Force yourself to look at the consequences.

What would it do to your wife?

What would it do to your kids? (how would you feel if one of your parents committed adultery or broke up the family?)

What will it do to your grandkids?

What will it do to your friends?

What will it do to folks at church that know you?

What will it do to your effectiveness in your ministry?

What will it do to people you’ve witnessed to?

What will it do to the other person’s spouse?

What will it do to their family and friends?

What if you contracted a sexually transmitted disease?

:35 He will not regard any ransom

Adultery and divorce – divorce is allowed when adultery is involved, but not necessary. A couple doesn’t have to divorce. God’s best would be reconciliation where there is true repentance, forgiveness, and restoration. This is exactly how God treats us when we commit “spiritual adultery” against Him. Yet God also knows the pain involved and some people can’t get to the point where they can ever let this pain go, or trust the spouse again.