Saturday, May 14, 2022
Your Life Is at Stake
4 1-2 Listen, friends, to some fatherly advice;
sit up and take notice so you’ll know how to live.
I’m giving you good counsel;
don’t let it go in one ear and out the other.
3-9 When I was a boy at my father’s knee,
the pride and joy of my mother,
He would sit me down and drill me:
“Take this to heart. Do what I tell you—live!
Sell everything and buy Wisdom! Forage for Understanding!
Don’t forget one word! Don’t deviate an inch!
Never walk away from Wisdom—she guards your life;
love her—she keeps her eye on you.
Above all and before all, do this: Get Wisdom!
Write this at the top of your list: Get Understanding!
Throw your arms around her—believe me, you won’t regret it;
never let her go—she’ll make your life glorious.
She’ll garland your life with grace,
she’ll festoon your days with beauty.”
-Proverbs 4:1-9 The Message
A Father’s Wise Instruction
4 Hear, O sons, a father’s instruction,
and be attentive, that you may gain insight,
2 for I give you good precepts;
do not forsake my teaching.
3 When I was a son with my father,
tender, the only one in the sight of my mother,
4 he taught me and said to me,
“Let your heart hold fast my words;
keep my commandments, and live.
5 Get wisdom; get insight;
do not forget, and do not turn away from the words of my mouth.
6 Do not forsake her, and she will keep you;
love her, and she will guard you.
7 The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom,
and whatever you get, get insight.
8 Prize her highly, and she will exalt you;
she will honor you if you embrace her.
9 She will place on your head a graceful garland;
she will bestow on you a beautiful crown.”
Verses 3-4 studies: As parents, one of the most extraordinary responsibilities is encouraging your children to become wise. Solomon talks about his father, David, who encouraged him to get wisdom when he was young (2 Chronicles 28-29). Because of David’s encouragement to Solomon prompted Solomon to ask God for an understanding heart above everything else. Wisdom can be passed on from generation to generation. But, wisdom comes from God; parents can only encourage their children to gain knowledge and turn to God. If your parents didn’t encourage you or teach this, God’s Word is full of understanding in place of your parents’ teaching it. You can learn wisdom and then create a legacy of learning when you teach your children.
David's Instructions to Solomon 2 When David's time to die drew near, he commanded Solomon his son, saying, 2 “I am about to go the way of all the earth. Be strong, and show yourself a man, 3 and keep the charge of the Lord your God, walking in his ways and keeping his statutes, his commandments, his rules, and his testimonies, as it is written in the Law of Moses, that you may prosper in all that you do and wherever you turn, 4 that the Lord may establish his word that he spoke concerning me, saying, ‘If your sons pay close attention to their way, to walk before me in faithfulness with all their heart and with all their soul, you shall not lack[a] a man on the throne of Israel.’ 5 “Moreover, you also know what Joab the son of Zeruiah did to me, how he dealt with the two commanders of the armies of Israel, Abner the son of Ner, and Amasa the son of Jether, whom he killed, avenging[b] in time of peace for blood that had been shed in war, and putting the blood of war[c] on the belt around his[d] waist and on the sandals on his feet. 6 Act therefore according to your wisdom, but do not let his gray head go down to Sheol in peace. 7 But deal loyally with the sons of Barzillai the Gileadite, and let them be among those who eat at your table, for with such loyalty[e] they met me when I fled from Absalom your brother. 8 And there is also with you Shimei the son of Gera, the Benjaminite from Bahurim, who cursed me with a grievous curse on the day when I went to Mahanaim. But when he came down to meet me at the Jordan, I swore to him by the Lord, saying, ‘I will not put you to death with the sword.’ 9 Now therefore do not hold him guiltless, for you are a wise man. You will know what you ought to do to him, and you shall bring his gray head down with blood to Sheol.” -1 Kings 2:1-9 ESV 9 Give your servant therefore an understanding mind to govern your people, that I may discern between good and evil, for who is able to govern this your great people?” -1 Kings 3:9 ESV
Verses 5-7 studies: If you choose to get wisdom, get after it! It takes a good amount of determination. There are days you want to abandon getting knowledge, but this is a process you shouldn’t give up, no matter how hard it is. It’s not a once-in-a-lifetime step, but it is a daily learning process to choose between the wicked (4:14-17, 19) or righteousness (4:18). There is nothing else more important or valuable.
Verse 7 study: David taught Solomon to seek God’s wisdom as a young boy. This is important because this is a choice that Solomon can make, and Solomon learned this lesson well. Solomon chose wisdom over everything when God approached the new king to see about new requests. We should make God’s wisdom our first choice. We don’t have to wait for God to come to us. Through prayer, we can ask for it. James 1:5 reminds us we can get wisdom through God, and he will grant it.
5 If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. -James 1:5 ESV