Proverbs 10:1-24:34 are randomly written, as if they were Judgments Solomon made about individual cases brought to him for Divine Wisdom (1 Kings Chapters 3 and 10), or simply God-given explanations about life. New Testament passages may help see the continuation of Wisdom offered through Jesus Christ.
10:23: Only a “fool” makes fun of doing “evil,” whereas “a man of understanding” possesses “wisdom.” Proverbs 14:9: “Fools mock at sin, But among the upright there is favor.” Proverbs 15:21: “Folly is joy to him who is destitute of discernment, But a man of understanding walks uprightly.” Only an evil person enjoys sin. Moses chose to refuse “to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin” (Hebrews 11:25) offered to him in Egypt. Proverbs 21:17: “He who loves pleasure will be a poor man; He who loves wine and oil will not be rich.” Pleasure derived from wickedness is a waste of time, effort, money, and souls. There is nothing at all wrong with real enjoyment and fun, but to “love” it means it has taken a place within the heart that crowds out the loves that should be greater: God, Jesus Christ, Word of God, husband or wife, children and family. Even a 12-year-old Jesus understood that He “must be about My Father’s business” (Luke 2:49), while today, 12-year-olds are so occupied with ball games, social activities, iphones, ipads, parties, proms, texting, sexting, Facebook, Instagram, tweeting, and the like, they don’t know which Father, or whose business they should be about! A young widow who has no home responsibility, but “lives in pleasure is dead while she lives” (1 Timothy 5:6). Male or female, “those who count it pleasure to carouse in the daytime” will “receive the wages of unrighteousness” (2 Peter 2:13). Truly, “the wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23), and sinners will pay those wages, either with: bodily dissipation, destroyed lives, ruined families, isolation and loneliness, and/or eternal punishment. There is no joy, pleasure, fun, or folly associated with any of these, and nothing to “love.”
The wise will listen to the experience of one wiser, Solomon, who’s “been there, done that:”
“I said in my heart, ‘Come now, I will test you with mirth; therefore enjoy pleasure”; but surely, this also was vanity. I said of laughter-‘Madness!;’ and of mirth, ‘What does it accomplish?’ I searched in my heart how to gratify my flesh with wine, while guiding my heart with wisdom, and how to lay hold on folly, till I might see what was good for the sons of men to do under heaven all the days of their lives. I made my works great, I built myself houses, and planted myself vineyards. I made myself gardens and orchards, and I planted all kinds of fruit trees in them. I made myself water pools from which to water the growing trees of the grove. I acquired male and female servants, and had servants born in my house. Yes, I had greater possessions of herds and flocks than all who were in Jerusalem before me. I also gathered for myself silver and gold and the special treasures of kings and of the provinces. I acquired male and female singers, the delights of the sons of men, and musical instruments of all kinds. So I became great and excelled more than all who were before me in Jerusalem. Also my wisdom remained with me. Whatever my eyes desired I did not keep from them. I did not withhold my heart from any pleasure, For my heart rejoiced in all my labor; And this was my reward from all my labor. Then I looked on all the works that my hands had done And on the labor in which I had toiled; And indeed all was vanity and grasping for the wind. There was no profit under the sun” (Ecclesiastes 2:1-11). The real “pleasure” in life costs less, is far more enjoyable, lasts longer, and helps more people see the better way: “fear God and keep His commandments” (Ecclesiastes 12:13).
All Scriptures and comments are based upon the New King James Version, unless otherwise noted.