READING: Proverbs 7-9
TEXTS AND APPLICATION: These chapters continue to describe wisdom, with a particular application to resisting seduction and adultery. Within that context, though, are reminders for us.
1. Wisdom means continually remembering instruction.
We too easily forget instruction even before it settles in our head. The writer of Proverbs reminds us we are to protect instruction so we don’t lose it, tie it to our finger so it’s ever before us, and write it on our heart so it becomes DNA. That’s much different than hearing a sermon and forgetting what we’ve heard before we get to the car.
Prov. 7:2-3 Keep my commands and live; protect my teachings as the pupil of your eye. Tie them to your fingers; write them on the tablet of your heart.
2. Wisdom lacks when we follow the path of sin.
In an illustration about a seductress luring a young man, the writer dramatically shows what happens when we surrender to our sinful desires. Following our urges and forgetting the consequences, we foolishly choose the temporary over the eternal. Whatever our sin struggles may be, we follow the same path when we choose disobedience.
Prov. 7:22-23 He follows her impulsively like an ox going to the slaughter, like a deer bounding toward a trap until an arrow pierces its liver, like a bird darting into a snare—he doesn’t know it will cost him his life.
3. Wisdom means staying away from the traps.
Sin and folly beckon us, and we often know the “traps” that get us. Greed that wants more. Ego that begs for more recognition. That co-worker whose attentiveness is alluring. Anger toward someone that we refuse to release. Language and jokes that dishonor God. The wise person avoids the paths of sin in his life and instead seeks godly instruction.
Prov. 7:25 Don’t let your heart turn aside to her [the seductress] ways; don’t stray onto her paths.
Prov. 8:5 Learn to be shrewd, you who are inexperienced [likely, those who are easily misled]; develop common sense, you who are foolish.
PRAYER: Regardless of how long we’ve been believers, we can still fall. Let’s pray today that God would grant us His wisdom to recognize and avoid the traps in front of us.
TOMORROW’S READING: Proverbs 10-12