(#115) The Proverbs of Solomon 16:27-29-Neighborhood Watch

Since God Created humans, only God can provide specific understanding of human behavior. God gave Solomon Divine Wisdom (1 Kings Chapters 3 and 10) to explain what and why behavior is as it is, and Proverbs 10:1-24:34 are randomly written, as if they were Solomon’s judgments about individual cases brought to him, or simply God-given explanations about life. New Testament passages may help see the continuation of Wisdom offered through Jesus Christ.

Proverbs 16:27-29: “An ungodly man digs up evil, And it is on his lips like a burning fire. 28 A perverse man sows strife, And a whisperer separates the best of friends. 29 A violent man entices his neighbor, And leads him in a way that is not good.”

The “world of the ungodly” perished in the Flood in Noah’s day (2 Peter 2:5); the destruction of Sodom & Gomorrah was “an example to those who afterward would live ungodly” (2 Peter 2:6); and this heaven and earth “are reserved for fire until the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men” (2 Peter 3:7). God never rewards the ungodly with good!

The sins of the “ungodly” include: (1) digging up evil; (2) sowing strife; (3) whispering; (4) enticing neighbors in a way not good.

(1) Everyone has scars from sin and can be picked apart. It is the ungodly, however, whose lips are “burning” to tell what evil we have done! Other proverbs reveal backstabbers: “A talebearer reveals secrets, But he who is of a faithful spirit conceals a matter” (Proverbs 11:13); “He who goes about as a talebearer reveals secrets; Therefore do not associate with one who flatters with his lips” (Proverbs 20:19); “Where there is no wood, the fire goes out; And where there is no talebearer, strife ceases” (Proverbs 26:20); “The words of a talebearer are like tasty trifles, And they go down into the inmost body” (Proverbs 26:22). “Do not associate” with these.

(2) Sowing strife will reap its own harvest. Other proverbs show its dangers: “The beginning of strife is like releasing water; Therefore stop contention before a quarrel starts” (Proverbs 17:14); “Where there is no wood, the fire goes out; And where there is no talebearer, strife ceases. As charcoal is to burning coals, and wood to fire, So is a contentious man to kindle strife” (Proverbs 26:20-21); “He who is of a proud heart stirs up strife, But he who trusts in the LORD will be prospered” (Proverbs 28:25).

(3) Only enemies carry on a campaign of “whispering” against someone, and they are not friends (Lamentations 3:62)! “Whispering” is spreading dirt about someone to others, but being too cowardly to speak it out loud! “Whisperers” are “filled with all unrighteousness” (Romans 1:29), and are sneaky, slimy, slinky people who have the moral backbone of a maggot.

(4) The “violent man” uses people to act out his violence with him. The recent racist “game” called “Knockout” is done by “violent” people who huddle in their groups, only to strike out at harmless, innocent by-standers. Their gang includes the ungodly, perverse, whisperers condemned by God’s Wisdom.

It is indeed tragic when these sinners are Christians who have resurrected their “old man” of sin and smeared the royal name by which they are known (Ephesians 4:17-32)!

All Scriptures and comments are based upon the New King James Version, unless otherwise noted.

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