Proverbs

Proverbs 11

Chapter 11 of Proverbs continues to delineate the contrast between righteousness and lawlessness. God, in His wonderful grace, uses every opportunity to warn the young and inexperienced of the dangers and sorrows of rebelling against His Word. He puts before them the physical and spiritual blessings to be found in obedience to wisdom and truth. 11:1 Our God would have earthly scales regulated by heavenly standards. He delights in absolute integrity. A deceitful balance indicates lack o...

Proverbs 10

This chapter begins the second division of the book, which is strictly proverbial. Previously we have been listening to Wisdom’s exhortation to enter her house. She called us to heed the instructions gathered together for our enlightenment regarding suitable behavior in all circumstances. The seductive voice of Folly would turn us aside from this right course. Happy the man who refuses Folly and, attracted by Wisdom, conscientiously seeks to follow her words. This is particularly true o...

Proverbs 9

A final contrast between Wisdom and Folly is described in this chapter. The figure of the previous chapter is still used. Wisdom is likened to a prudent woman inviting the traveler to enter her home, where true knowledge is given to all who sincerely seek it. Folly takes her stand in a similar way, urging all to turn in to her. She offers “the pleasures of sin for a season” to those who yield to her entreaties. 9:1-2 The Word of God as a whole, and Proverbs in particular, is Wisdom...

Proverbs 28

None are so cowardly as those who are carrying about a guilty conscience. They are terrified by their own thoughts and frightened by a shadow. The first verse contrasts them with the righteous. 28:1 Some men live in the continual dread of the consequences of their sin. But those who live to please God and walk rightly before men, are inspired with holy confidence and almost superhuman courage. When naturally weak and timid men and women were martyred for Christ’s sake they were bolde...

Introductory Notes By Arno C. Gaebelein

The Title The title of the book of Proverbs in the Hebrew Bible is Mishle, which is derived from the verb mashal, “to rule”; hence Mishle means “short sayings that are given to govern life and conduct.” The word also has the meaning of “a resemblance”--that is, “a parable.” Many proverbs are concentrated parables. Our English word “proverbs” comes from the word proverbia used in the Latin translation. The Authorship Traditionally the authorship of the whole book ...

Author’s Introduction

In the book of Ecclesiastes, the royal preacher graphically related the story of his weary search for happiness “under the sun.” Its disappointing result led to the oft-repeated lament, “Vanity of vanities; all is vanity and vexation of spirit.” He then directed those who would escape the devious paths he had chosen in life to consider the collection of proverbs that he had “sought out and set in order.” Vanity of vanities, saith the preacher; all is vanity. And moreover, beca...

Proverbs 1

The first four verses of the book of Proverbs would seem to justify the title given to this remarkable collection of sayings—“The Young Man’s Book.” There are nine words used in this brief introductory portion that recur throughout the book. These words should be considered in beginning this study since they are not mere synonyms used pedantically or idly. But as “every word of God is pure,” so these terms are employed throughout this passage with admirable precision. 1:1-4 ...

Proverbs 2

In the opening verses of Proverbs 2 the secret that so many have sought in vain is revealed: how to find the knowledge of God. After all, there is very little mystery about it. The Christian need not be scholarly and profound to understand the Scripture. It is a certain condition of soul, rather than a well-equipped mind, that is required. God has given His Word. He exhorts us to search it in dependence on His Holy Spirit, who guides us into all truth. 2:1-5 These verses do not suggest...

Proverbs 3

The exhortation of Proverbs 3:1 is important to all of us. Many see long life as an evidence of the special blessing of the Lord. “Let thine heart keep my commandments,” is a much needed admonition. 3:1-2 These verses speak of far more than submission to duty. They suggest loving devotion to the will of God. The Psalmist said, “Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee” (Psalm 119:11). And Ezra “prepared his heart to seek the law of the Lord, and to...

Proverbs 4

Solomon’s early training is touchingly alluded to in the first four verses of this chapter. 4:1-4 As his mother’s only son, Solomon was tenderly loved and cared for; as the object of his father’s heart, he had been carefully instructed in the law of the Lord, and had profited by it. The unhappy history of Solomon’s half-brother Adonijah shows how indebted Solomon was to his mother’s counsel and his father’s instruction. David had never intervened in Adonijah’s activiti...
Syndicate content