(#83) The Proverbs of Solomon 14:15-16-Simply Lost

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 14:15-16: “The simple believes every word, But the prudent considers well his steps. 16 A wise man fears and departs from evil, But a fool rages and is self-confident.”

“The simple” is a term, in the Book of Proverbs, which describes someone who is not using their mind for good judgment. “Simple” is not a compliment, for it is a disgrace for a human being not to use reasoning before acting. When sinful actions are the result of hormones, others, anger or malice, opportunity, lusts, pride, envy, rebelliousness, or willful ignorance, then prudence has not been used. “So then, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath; for the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God” (James 1:19-20).

One of the purposes of a proverb, Solomon said, is to “give prudence to the simple” (Proverbs 1:4). When one honestly, sincerely, and lovingly “thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth” (1 Corinthians 13:5-6), that indicates a purity of heart desiring to believe the best in others. But when one is “simple,” in the New Testament, it means to think innocently without always dwelling on wrongs, sins, or evil. One may therefore be easily deceived by slick speeches, designed to mislead. “For those who are such do not serve our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly, and by smooth words and flattering speech deceive the hearts of the simple. For your obedience has become known to all. Therefore I am glad on your behalf; but I want you to be wise in what is good, and simple concerning evil. And the God of peace will crush Satan under your feet shortly. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Amen” (Romans 16:18-20). Being “wise in what is good” means using God’s Word as a filter for discrimination or prudence. Being “simple concerning evil” means making judgments unmixed by seeing any possibilities of evil.

Every time sin is identified, “a fool rages” as if he is right and unjustly condemned! The indignant sinner makes mockery of God’s Word. “Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God” (1 Corinthians 6:9-10). NONE of such sinners has any moral right to such behavior, and NO right to condemn God, Scripture, or Christians because their behavior is damned! The church of Christ in Corinth was made up of people who, having heard, “believed and were baptized” (Acts 18:8), but had left behind their immorality and ungodliness (1 Corinthians 6:11). NO indignant or raging sinner will be saved. Scribes and Pharisees watched Jesus for something with which to condemn Him, but, with a miracle, He healed a man, and challenged their false doctrine. “But they were filled with rage, and discussed with one another what they might do to Jesus” (Luke 6:6-11). It is sad when any sinner reacts with defensive rage but misses Jesus Christ.

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

#bible-study, #discrimination, #evil, #good, #practical-lessons, #proverbs, #prudence, #simple, #wisdom


(#24) Studies in the Book of Proverbs Eight Reasons Why Listen To Reason: #6-8

#6-8 Proverbs 9:1-18

#6 Verses 1-6: She Speaks Protectively

Wisdom is pictured as having completed a perfect house, offering hospitality to all the “simple” (those who are following whatever leader speaks, in Proverbs not someone using good judgment) who will come. (1 “Seven pillars” show Divinely complete strength, (2 a sumptuous feast, (3 an invitation through trusted messengers, and (4 an appeal to the public: for the “simple” to “turn in,” and those “who lack understanding” to partake of the feast; that is, stop foolishness and follow understanding. The New Testament teaches (1 “that now the manifold wisdom of God might be made known by the church…according to the eternal purpose which He accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Ephesians 3:10-11). (2 The church of Christ is built by God’s Wisdom; offers a sumptuous feast: “I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever; and the bread that I shall give is My flesh, which I shall give for the life of the world” (John 6:51); (3 an invitation through trusted messengers: “”Therefore the wisdom of God also said, ‘I will send them prophets and apostles, and some of them they will kill and persecute’” (Luke 11:49); (4 an appeal to the public: “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light” (Matthew 11:28-30). Wisdom still invites from her house!

#7 Verses 7-12: She Speaks Principally

According to verses 7-8, “scorners” and a “wicked” person will only reject Wisdom and hate and hurt those who “correct.” But, given Wisdom, the “wise” will “love you,” for he will be “wiser,” and a “just man” will “increase in learning.” Jesus Christ said: “Remember the word that I said to you, ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you. If they kept My word, they will keep yours also” (John 15:20). The “beginning of wisdom” is to develop “fear (awe, respect) of the LORD” and “understanding” is produced by “knowledge of the Holy One” (plural in the Hebrew, like Elohim, Genesis 1:1, 26-27). Following Wisdom potentially lengthens life, for it is a purely individual response to God.

#8 Verses 13-18: She Speaks Purely

Wisdom is calling out, but at the same time, so, also is “a foolish woman.” Contrasted with Wisdom’s house which offers clean, long life, the “foolish woman” calls to all who “pass by” for “the simple” (those without discernment or wisdom) to “turn in here. Her appeal is the excitement of breaking law and comfort of secrecy. She appeals to those who don’t think ahead of their individual judgment from God.

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

#bible-study, #book-of-proverbs, #church-of-christ, #depths-of-hell, #foolish-woman, #lacks-understanding, #simple, #wisdom


Studies in the Book of Proverbs

(#5) Listen to Wisdom everywhere 1:20-33

Verses 20-21: The word “wisdom” is actually plural, “wisdoms,” but is personified as if a single individual. The Creator, “God,” is also in plural form, but with singular verbs, is spoken of as an individual (Genesis 1:1, 26-27). This may help explain Ephesians 3:10 which says “now the manifold wisdom of God might be made known by the church to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places.” God’s wisdom is obvious as if it was “shouted” in public places.

Verses 22-23: “Simple ones” are those who have been duped and deceived into sin, because they have not listened to wise advice. It is the attitude of sinners, some of whom attack wisdom with ignorance and ridicule (“scorners”), some refuse to be corrected (“fools”), throughout the Book of Proverbs. The only way for “sinners/scorners/fools” to be rescued is for them to “turn,” or repent and accept God’s wisdom. This is the theme of the entire Bible, for God “is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance” (2 Peter 3:9). Wisdom’s “spirit” (influence or education) will be poured into the gaps of a person’s knowledge by the “words” (revealed through miraculously-inspired writers in the Word of God, Ephesians 3:1-7) “known to you.”

Verses 24-25: This is willful ignorance because: the call is refused, the offered hand is snubbed, the counsel ridiculed, the rebuke is rejected.

Verses 26-27: When the terrible consequences of ignorance, which produce fear and terror, occur, Wisdom will offer rejection in return!

Verses 28-31: Fools who answered Wisdom’s cry with silence, then face consequences of their decisions, Wisdom will answer back with silence! In the absence of Wisdom, people will suffer consequences of their own decisions, and this is God’s rule for life, for Jesus said, “Every plant which My heavenly Father has not planted will be uprooted. Let them alone. They are blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind leads the blind, both will fall into a ditch” (Matthew 15:13-14). Sinners, who are punished by their own actions, have no one to blame but themselves! Those who survive their self-induced catastrophes, frequently learn to turn to Wisdom in their future.

Verses 32-33: The Rule of Wisdom is clearly stated in these verses. Jesus will apply this Rule on the Day of Judgment (Matthew 7:21-27).

Thought: In a crumbling society, “the complacency of fools” becomes a damning phrase to all who continue to vote, teach, approve, accept, or allow what has been done to continue to be done!

#bible-study, #christian-living, #complacency, #faith, #fools, #god, #practical-lessons, #scorner, #simple, #willful-ignorance, #wisdom

Can't They Make A Pen That Writes?

If folks can put a man on the moon, why can’t they make a ball point pen that writes (every time)?

When I buy groceries and begin to write a check – the pen doesn’t write, or the ink skips where you can’t read the writing. It’s always been amazing to me, that the more simple a thing is, the more complicated man makes it.

Do you think that’s the reason why folks seemingly can’t understand the Bible — because they make something that is relatively simple (the gospel) complicated?

#amaze, #ball, #check, #folk, #grocery, #ink, #man, #moon, #pen, #point, #reason, #simple, #skip, #understand, #write, #writing

If you can’t explain what you’re doing…

If you can’t explain what you’re doing in simple English, you’re probably doing something wrong.

Alfred Kazin, American critic and author (1915-1998)

#explain, #probably, #simple, #wrong

The Simple Believes Every Word

Proverbs 14:15:

“The simple believes every word, But the prudent [one who is wise & uses sound judgment] man considers well his steps.”

From whatever source of religious instruction – Investigate, Investigate, Investigate!

#believe, #consider, #instruction, #investigate, #prudent, #simple, #source, #step, #word

There is a point at which everything bec…

There is a point at which everything becomes simple and there is no longer any question of choice, because all you have staked will be lost if you look back. Life’s point of no return.

Dag Hammarskjold, Swedish diplomat, U.N. Secretary General (1905-1961)

#choice, #everything, #look, #lost, #point, #question, #return, #simple, #staked

The greatest truths are the simplest, an…

The greatest truths are the simplest, and so are the greatest men.

J.C. Hare, English clergyman and writer (1796-1855)

#great, #men, #simple, #truth