Morning Bible Study
The book of Proverbs is all about wisdom.
Wisdom is not about knowing facts.
Wisdom is about knowing what to do with what you know.
Wisdom is knowing when to do it.
Wisdom is knowing how to do it.
We are now crossing into a new section of the book of Proverbs.
The first nine chapters of Proverbs were small “mini-lectures” that Solomon
gives to his son.
The rest of the book are what we typically call the “proverbs”.
Proverbs are sayings, typically short, that give wisdom and insight into
They are intended to lead to a better life.
They are not absolute promises – that if you do these things that you will
always be healthy, wealthy, and things will always go your way.
They are general principles – that if you do them your life will be
generally better than if you didn’t do them.
I want to encourage you to have a pencil or pen ready as we work through
I am not going to take time to stop and unpack every single proverb, or
we’d be in Proverbs for the next ten years.
God may want to use one of the proverbs that we simply pass over to speak
to you, so be ready to mark up your Bible or write down a verse.
It is not the rhyming of word sounds, but of ideas.
Most of these proverbs are in two lines, and one line plays off of another.
Sometimes the second line is a parallel of the first. It expresses the same
idea with different words.
Sometimes the second line is an opposite idea, still clarifying the second,
but by way of contrast.
Be careful that you don’t look at one phrase without looking at the other.
:1 The proverbs of Solomon: A wise son makes a glad father, But a foolish
son is the grief of his mother.
:2 Treasures of wickedness profit nothing, But righteousness delivers from
HCSB) Ill-gotten gains do not profit anyone, but righteousness rescues
:3 The Lord will not allow
the righteous soul to famish, But He casts away the desire of the wicked.
:3 The Lord will not allow
the righteous soul to famish
God feeds the hunger and quenches the thirst of the righteous person, the
one who follows Jesus.
The wicked person keeps hungering for more and more.
We all have a hunger inside of us.
Hugh Hefner was a man with appetites.
To some people it looked like he really “lived the good
life”, living a hedonistic lifestyle of fulfilling his every lust.
What the press will rarely talk about was how miserable,
lonely, and afraid of death he was. He
was a miserable man behind the scenes.
It appears that the famous movie mogul Harvey Weinstein is also a man of
Do you see how that’s turning out?
You and I are no different.
We too have appetites.
The difference is merely how we try to satisfy our appetites.
6:35 NKJV) “I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and
he who believes in Me shall never thirst.
We all have thirsts as well.
We all have an inner “thirst” inside of us.
There’s a part of us that seems dry and empty.
Our problem comes when we try to satisfy that thirst with
the wrong kinds of things.
Only Jesus can fill that inner thirst.
When Jesus met a Samaritan woman at a well, he talked about what we thirst
4:13–14 NKJV) —13 Jesus answered and said to her, “Whoever drinks of this water will
thirst again, 14
whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the
water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up
into everlasting life.”
Let me ask you this – do you believe that Jesus can satisfy your inner
hunger and quench that thirst in your soul?
Until you do, you will keep struggling.
:4 He who has a slack hand becomes poor, But the hand of the diligent makes
HCSB) Idle hands make one poor, but diligent hands bring riches.
:5 He who gathers in summer is a wise son; He who sleeps in harvest is
a son who causes shame.
:5 He who gathers in summer is a wise son
Summer time is typically harvest time.
It’s when the farmers work hard to reap their fields and gather the
grain that has been growing all year.
Just like verse 4, this is a picture of diligence.
You need to work hard while you’ve got work. Don’t take work for granted.
This will be a recurring theme throughout Proverbs. We’ll talk more about it in coming chapters.
:6 Blessings are on the head of the righteous, But violence covers
the mouth of the wicked.
(Proverbs 10:6 NLT)
godly are showered with blessings; the words of the wicked conceal violent
It’s hard to believe a person who has established a reputation for being
:7 The memory of the righteous is blessed, But the name of the
wicked will rot.
:8 The wise in heart will receive commands, But a prating fool will fall.
(Proverbs 10:8 NLT)
wise are glad to be instructed, but babbling fools fall flat on their faces.
The wise person likes to listen and learn.
The foolish person likes to talk.
And talk is going to cause them trouble.
:9 He who walks with integrity walks securely, But he who perverts his ways
will become known.
(Proverbs 10:9 NLT)
with integrity walk safely, but those who follow crooked paths will be exposed.
When you live your life with integrity, you never have to worry about
looking over your shoulder to see if some underhanded thing you did is going to
catch up with you.
If you live your life trying to be sneaky and devious, know that one day it
will all be known.
:10 He who winks with the eye causes trouble, But a prating fool will fall.
HCSB) A sly wink of the eye causes grief, and foolish lips will be
:11 The mouth of the righteous is a well of life, But violence
covers the mouth of the wicked.
:12 Hatred stirs up strife, But love covers all sins.
:12 love covers all sins
Peter quotes this verse:
(1 Peter 4:8 NKJV) And above
all things have fervent love for one another, for “love will cover a
multitude of sins.”
Hatred uses the knowledge of a person’s sin against them as a weapon,
stirring up strife.
Love knows when to be quiet.
This is not “covering” up a sin, like ignoring a person’s sin.
This is “covering” in the sense that you don’t go blabbing about what a
person is struggling with when you should be helping them to get out of their
There is a place for keeping some things confidential.
NKJV) Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are
spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself
lest you also be tempted.
In a way, Noah was like the first action hero who saved the world.
While the world was facing judgment, and unwilling to repent of their sins,
Noah built an ark and saved the human race by saving his family.
The story of Noah doesn’t end when the flood ended.
NLT) —20 After the flood, Noah began to cultivate the ground, and he planted
a vineyard. 21 One day he
drank some wine he had made, and he became drunk and lay naked inside his tent.
Righteous old Noah got stinkin’ drunk. The implication is that he did something
embarrassing and foolish inside his tent, laying around naked.
Noah’s youngest son, Ham, walks in on his dad.
22 Ham, the
father of Canaan, saw that his father was naked and went outside and told his
The story is graciously unclear as to exactly what Ham did
to Noah. At the very least, there’s some
kind of ridicule going on as in, “Look what righteous old dad is doing!!!”
23 Then Shem
and Japheth took a robe, held it over their shoulders, and backed into the tent
to cover their father. As they did this, they looked the other way so they
would not see him naked. 24 When Noah woke up from his stupor, he learned what Ham, his
youngest son, had done.
Noah would pronounce a curse on Ham’s family for whatever
it was that he did.
Shem and Japheth are the ones we should try to be like.
While Ham broadcast Noah’s sin, Shem and Japheth covered
There is a place for confidentiality among people who love each other.
I’m not talking about turning your head to abuse.
Husbands and wives, do you broadcast your spouse’s sins to your friends or
family without their permission?
It is impossible to keep peace between man and woman in family life if they
do not condone and overlook each other’s faults but watch everything to the
smallest point. For who does not at times offend?
-- Martin Luther.
:13 Wisdom is found on the lips of him who has understanding, But a rod is
for the back of him who is devoid of understanding.
:13 a rod is for the back
Sometimes it is appropriate for a person who rejects wisdom to experience
punishment for their deeds.
:14 Wise people store up knowledge, But the mouth of the foolish is
NLT) Wise people treasure knowledge, but the babbling of a fool invites
:15 The rich man’s wealth is his strong city; The destruction of the
poor is their poverty.
:15 The rich man’s wealth
Solomon is just being honest.
Wealth does provide a type of protection.
This doesn’t make it right or wrong, it’s just a statement of fact in this
world we live in.
:16 The labor of the righteous leads to life, The wages of the
wicked to sin.
:17 He who keeps instruction is in the way of life, But he who
refuses correction goes astray.
:17 he who refuses correction goes astray
We will continue to see this subject throughout Proverbs.
Are you a teachable person?
Are you willing to learn from what wisdom wants to teach you?
Are you willing to accept correction when you’re wrong?
Those of you who remember the movie know the Mr. Miyagi’s goal wasn’t clean
cars. He was teaching underlying lessons.
You may be wondering what the point is with the things you’re facing.
Just remember to learn your lessons.
Understand that even as you grow and mature in life, and as you agonize
over decisions, you are not going always choose the right path.
Sometimes, whether it is in willful disobedience, or simple ignorance, you
will make bad decisions.
The question is, will you learn from your bad decisions, or will you go on
to repeat them over and over again.
Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting
Do you want to be “wise”? The issue
isn’t whether or not you were born with a high IQ. The issue has to do with whether or not you
Will you learn if God wants to teach you something?
:18 Whoever hides hatred has lying lips, And whoever spreads slander
is a fool.
NLT) Hiding hatred makes you a liar; slandering others makes you a fool.
:19 In the multitude of words sin is not lacking, But he who restrains his
lips is wise.
:19 he who restrains his lips is wise
Mark Twain said,
It’s better to keep your mouth closed and let people think you’re a fool,
than to open your mouth and remove all doubt.
Caution here – in relationships it is important to have good communication,
and that requires words.
Your spouse shouldn’t have to guess what you’re thinking.
Yet sometimes we say more than we need to, and we’re careless in what we
I think it’s a good rule in life that whenever possible, you take time to
think about what you’re going to say before you say it.
The more you open your mouth, the better your chance is of blowing it.
Some of you want to force words out of your spouse because you want a
problem to be resolved immediately.
Sometimes it’s better to wait a day for things to cool down, so words are
more carefully chosen.
:20 The tongue of the righteous is choice silver; The heart of the
wicked is worth little.
:21 The lips of the righteous feed many, But fools die for lack of wisdom.
:22 The blessing of the Lord
makes one rich, And He adds no sorrow with it.
:22 He adds no sorrow with it
When you earn your income legally, you have no anxiety over it.
You aren’t worrying if the IRS or the FBI is going to catch you.
:23 To do evil is like sport to a fool, But a man of understanding
:23 To do evil is like sport to a fool
Some people find comfort or pleasure in doing bad things.
I find that “evil” is often a subject of the comedy shows on TV.
Video: How I Met Your Mother –
How can Hollywood be incensed at Harvey Weinstein’s conduct, when it’s all
“wink, wink” at Barney’s playbook?
There might be pleasure in sin for a season, but it all ends poorly.
A wise man will pay attention to these things and avoid them.
What’s the deal with bars anyway? I have this notion that bars on TV are a sort
of substitute for church.
Have you noticed how common it is in TV shows for the
characters to wind up their day at the bar for drinks?
Or they end up at home … with a drink.
Do you remember the old 1980s comedy “Cheers”? It’s about life in a Boston bar.
Listen carefully to the theme song. There’s not a single thing in the words of
the theme that shouldn’t apply to church.
Video: Cheers Intro
The bar is just the world’s cheap imitation of what God
designed us for – fellowship with Him and with each other. It’s a “false pleasure” compared to what God
has for us.
The Bible tells us that alcohol itself is a cheap
imitation of what God has for us.
5:18 NLT) Don’t be drunk with wine, because that will ruin your life.
Instead, be filled with the Holy Spirit
:24 The fear of the wicked will come upon him, And the desire of the
righteous will be granted.
:25 When the whirlwind passes by, the wicked is no more, But
the righteous has an everlasting foundation.
NLT) When the storms of life come, the wicked are whirled away, but the
godly have a lasting foundation.
Ladies, does this remind you of last week’s retreat? You are only going to survive the storms of
life by walking with Jesus.
:26 As vinegar to the teeth and smoke to the eyes, So is the lazy man
to those who send him.
:26 So is the lazy man to those who send him
I’ve never drunk vinegar, so I don’t know what that’s like, but we’ve all
had our share of smoke in our eyes the past week with the fires, haven’t we?
It’s not pleasant.
If someone asks you to do something, and you agree, don’t be surprised if
they are a little bit annoyed if you don’t follow through.
:27 The fear of the Lord
prolongs days, But the years of the wicked will be shortened.
When you have a healthy fear of the Lord, then you don’t do the kinds of
evil things that will shorten your life.
:28 The hope of the righteous will be gladness, But the expectation
of the wicked will perish.
The good things in life that the wicked are hoping for will ultimately come
:29 The way of the Lord is
strength for the upright, But destruction will come to the workers of
:30 The righteous will never be removed, But the wicked will not inhabit
:31 The mouth of the righteous brings forth wisdom, But the perverse tongue
will be cut out.
:32 The lips of the righteous know what is acceptable, But the mouth of the
wicked what is perverse.
HCSB) The lips of the righteous know what is appropriate, but the mouth
of the wicked, only what is perverse.
:24 The fear of the wicked will come upon him, And the desire of the
righteous will be granted.
:24 The fear of the wicked will come upon him
Fears and Desires
Some would say that this means you need to be careful what you think about
because your thoughts have the power to create your future.
No. It’s simply stating that the
wicked still has a sense of fear, knowing that they are doing the wrong thing. One day they will get what’s coming to them.
Ultimately, one of the greatest fears that folks have is the fear of death.
And everyone will die.
(Hebrews 9:27 NKJV)
as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment,
Will you face God’s judgment when you die?
There is a way to escape God’s judgment, through the grace
of God offered to you in Jesus Christ.
3:16–17 NKJV) —16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that
whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. 17 For God did
not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world
through Him might be saved.
When you trust your life to Jesus, you no longer need to
fear death, because you have been saved from hell.
When you give your life to Jesus Christ, He gives you His
righteousness. You become “righteous” in
God’s eyes. (2Cor. 5:21)
(2 Corinthians 5:21
NKJV) For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we
might become the righteousness of God in Him.
What about that “desire of the righteous”?
I think the greatest desire of the righteous is our hope
That desire will be granted.