A Father’s Instruction
I die daily devotional.
10 Hear, my son, and accept my sayings
And the years of your life will be many.
11 I have directed you in the way of wisdom;
I have led you in upright paths.
12 When you walk, your steps will not be impeded;
And if you run, you will not stumble.
As I consider the meaning of an idea, an idea about direction, a direction that is not in the way of wisdom; what that might look like. I think of those who’ve yet to hear this good news of wisdom, to understand the upright paths of eternal life … what about them? Are they directed in the way of wisdom, and led in upright paths?
How could the gospel come to someone like me, and inspire me with hope for salvation from the path of the evil one leading me to destruction? A path I seem all too familiar with, a direction ever present in the way of cunning.
Romans 9:30 What shall we say then? That Gentiles, who did not pursue righteousness [who did not seek salvation and a right relationship with God, nevertheless] obtained righteousness, that is, the righteousness which is produced by faith; 31 whereas Israel, [though always] pursuing the law of righteousness, did not succeed in fulfilling the law. 32 And why not? Because it was not by faith [that they pursued it], but as though it were by works [relying on the merit of their works instead of their faith]. They stumbled over the stumbling Stone [Jesus Christ]. 33 As it is written and forever remains written, “Behold I am laying in Zion a Stone of stumbling and a Rock of offense; And he who believes in Him [whoever adheres to, trusts in, and relies on Him] will not be disappointed [in his expectations].”
Wisdom explains the justice of God through faith, that even those who’ve walked and are walking in faith yet to hear about the person of the Messiah, the Son of God—Jesus Christ—are counted as righteous, having obtained righteousness through faith although ignorant about the law. It is these people—once hearing the gospel for the first time—will act like new born babies sensing the closeness of the teat until finally latching on for the pure milk of the Word.
And so the way of error, not recognized by those who’ve yet to hear, but those who’ve heard and make effort in obedience to the law, that succumb to a direction of disobedience by their willful blindness to faith. As long as the evil one has convinced those that it’s by obedience to the law for salvation, death reigns with condemnation for the soul directed on the “upright” path.
Jesus has directed us in the way of wisdom, and the Spirit testifies, I have directed you in the way of wisdom. Jesus has led us in upright paths, and the Spirit testifies again, I have led you in upright paths. There is no excuse for anyone dead or alive, the Spirit of the gospel affirms the nature of faith so as to be saved. To reject and deny the Word of God upon your hearing is instead to accept the judgement according to your unbelief, affirmed by the faith of Christ you’ve stumbled over, the revelation of your soul condemned in the direction of sin in the path of the wicked.
2 Peter 2:11 whereas even angels who are superior in might and power do not bring a reviling (defaming) accusation against them before the Lord. 12 But these [false teachers], like unreasoning animals, [mere] creatures of instinct, born to be captured and destroyed, reviling things they do not understand, will also perish in their own corruption [in their destroying they will be destroyed], 13 suffering wrong [destined for punishment] as the wages of doing wrong. They count it a delight to revel in the daytime [living luxuriously]. They are stains and blemishes [on mankind], reveling in their deceptions even as they feast with you. 2 Peter 3:8 Nevertheless, do not let this one fact escape your notice, beloved, that with the Lord one day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years is like one day. 9 The Lord does not delay [as though He were unable to act] and is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is [extraordinarily] patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance. 10 But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will vanish with a [mighty and thunderous] roar, and the [material] elements will be destroyed with intense heat, and the earth and the works that are on it will be burned up.
Proverbs 4 (NASB)—blueletterbible.org | biblegateway.com
Matthew Henry (P4-V11) Commentary
(2.) By way of motive and inducement thus to labour for wisdom, and submit to the guidance of it, consider,
- [1.] It is the main matter, and that which ought to be the chief and continual care of every man in this life (v. 7): Wisdom is the principal thing; other things which we are solicitous to get and keep are nothing to it. It is the whole of man, Eccl. 12:13. It is that which recommends us to God, which beautifies the soul, which enables us to answer the end of our creation, to live to some good purpose in the world, and to get to heaven at last; and therefore it is the principal thing.
- [2.] It has reason and equity on its side (v. 11): “I have taught thee in the way of wisdom, and so it will be found to be at last. I have led thee, not in the crooked ways of carnal policy, which does wrong under colour of wisdom, but in right paths, agreeable to the eternal rules and reasons of good and evil.” The rectitude of the divine nature appears in the rectitude of all the divine laws. Observe, David not only taught his son by good instructions, but led him both by a good example and by applying general instructions to particular cases; so that nothing was wanting on his part to make him wise.