Tag Archives: the Word of God

He is a shield to those who walk in integrity | P2-V7

The Pursuit of Wisdom Brings Security

Proverbs 2; I die daily devotional.

He stores up sound wisdom for the upright; He is a shield to those who walk in integrity,


SOUND WISDOM

He stores up sound wisdom for the upright

Job 1:1—There was a man in the land of Uz whose name was Job; and that man was blameless, upright, fearing God and turning away from evil.

I’m curious… have you read the story of Job?

If you haven’t, stick around … because this book of the Bible is pressing on my heart to write my—I die daily devotions—on next. I digress.

If we didn’t know anything else about the man named Job other than what that first verse describes…

…what would you think?

Because it sounds like Job would be protected by God; he’s blameless, upright, and respects the power of His Holy God by turning away from evil.

So what could possibly go wrong?!

Well if we were to continue on, in the story, one might make the argument that God went wrong to be proud of Job, and that is exactly what Satan did; Satan made that argument, ultimately challenging the Word of God about Job, and was granted the permission to put his [Satan’s] challenge to the test.

What do you think happened to Job?

Do you think that Job remained blameless, upright, and fearing God?

If we, Christians today, think ourselves to be upright, how would it be determined?

Do we think that if we lived with knowledge of the scriptures, to practice them in faith by: prophesying, casting out demons, working miracles, etc.; that according to the evidence of that power through the scriptures, we must be upright?

The answer according to scripture is…

No.

Mat 7:21“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter.  22 Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; DEPART FROM ME, YOU WHO PRACTICE LAWLESSNESS.’

You see… there are quite a few fascinating insights and treasures we can gain by this story of Job regarding uprightness and integrity:

  1. Job was known by God.
  2. Satan challenged the integrity of God’s Word.
  3. Satan challenged the integrity of Job’s character.
  4. Job was put to the test.

Okay, now watch this…

  • We are known by God through Jesus Christ.
  • Satan is challenging the integrity of grace.
  • Satan is challenging the integrity of the cross.
  • We are being put to the test.

SHIELD

 He is a shield to those who walk in integrity

Jesus is our shield of faith as we breathe each breath, clap our hands, and stomp our feet! Thinking to myself:

“Shoot…

It’s time to feel that beat of the drum!

BUM-BUM-BUM!”

Let death come?

No!

Let change come!

1Co 15: — “… 51 Behold, I tell you a mystery; we will not all sleep, but we will all be changed, 52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet; for the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. …”

As we walk through the valley of this shadow of death, we’ll fear no evil.

Christ, by His Word, is the Holy Spirit that lives in us who are known by the Word of God; to be that shield to our integrity, that justice due our sin was paid on the cross of Jesus, and by our acceptance of that truth is an act of faith revealed at the confession of our behavior—Jesus is the name of the Lord.

AND WE SERVE HIM…

TO THE GLORY OF GOD…

OUR FATHER IN HEAVEN!

Oh… the war is here… it’s already happening… can you feel it?

Satan is killing; people are dropping dead. Satan is taking; people are losing income. Satan is lying; people are cursing the day of their birth for want of understanding.

Can you hear?

The Whirlwind is here… do you hear?

Are we listening?

Job 38:1—Then the LORD answered Job out of the whirlwind and said, 2 “Who is this that darkens counsel
By words without knowledge?

I mean… who am I [Nathan] to say what’s next?

Is God to blame? No! God is not to blame for divine beings that have manipulated His [God’s] glory for the sake of their own, of which is not attainable, but Hell is their destiny… their choice, and regretfully so… .

We are but dust, a vapor in the wind, and yet…

LOVED!


  • As you examine your life, and think about Job, what do you experience and why?
  • How does our verse today inspire you?
  • What do you hear come from the whirlwind in your life right now, and what is your response?

RECOURCE

[BP]

Proverbs 2 (NASB)—blueletterbible.org
1 My son, if you will receive my words And treasure my commandments within you, 2 Make your ear attentive to wisdom, Incline your heart to understanding; 3 For if you cry for discernment, Lift your voice for understanding; 4 If you seek her as silver And search for her as for hidden treasures; Then you will discern the fear of the LORD And discover the knowledge of God. 6 For the LORD gives wisdom; From His mouth come  knowledge and understanding. He stores up sound wisdom for the upright; He is a shield to those who walk in integrity, 8 Guarding the paths of justice, And He preserves the way of His godly ones. 9 Then you will discern righteousness and justice And equity and every good course. 10 For wisdom will enter your heart And knowledge will be pleasant to your soul; 11 Discretion will guard you, Understanding will watch over you, 12 To deliver you from the way of evil, From the man who speaks perverse things; 13 From those who leave the paths of uprightness To walk in the ways of darkness; 14 Who delight in doing evil And rejoice in the perversity of evil; 15 Whose paths are crooked, And who are devious in their ways; 16 To deliver you from the strange woman, From the adulteress who flatters with her words; 17 That leaves the companion of her youth And forgets the covenant of her God; 18 For her house sinks down to death And her tracks lead to the dead; 19 None who go to her return again, Nor do they reach the paths of life. 20 So you will walk in the way of good men And keep to the paths of the righteous. 21 For the upright will live in the land And the blameless will remain in it; 22 But the wicked will be cut off from the land And the treacherous will be uprooted from it.


COMMENTARY

Matthew Henry (P2-V7) Commentary
3. He has particularly provided that good men, who are sincerely disposed to do his will, shall have that knowledge and that understanding which are necessary for them, Jn. 7:17. Let them seek wisdom, and they shall find it; let them ask, and it shall be given them, v. 7, 8. Observe here,

  • (1.) Who those are that are thus favoured. They are the righteous, on whom the image of God is renewed, which consists in righteousness, and those who walk uprightly, who are honest in their dealings both with God and man and make conscience of doing their duty as far as they know it. They are his saints, devoted to his honour, and set apart for his service.
  • (2.) What it is that is provided for them.
    • [1.] Instruction. The means of wisdom are given to all, but wisdom itself, sound wisdom, is laid up for the righteous, laid up in Christ their head, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge, and who is made of God to us wisdom. The same that is the Spirit of revelation in the word is a Spirit of wisdom in the souls of those that are sanctified, that wisdom of the prudent which is to understand his way; and it is sound wisdom, its foundations firm, its principles solid, and its products of lasting advantage.
    • [2.] Satisfaction. Some read it, He lays up substance for the righteous,  not only substantial knowledge, but substantial happiness and comfort, Prov. 8:21. Riches are things that are not, and those that have them only fancy themselves happy; but what is laid up in the promises and in heaven for the righteous will make them truly, thoroughly, and eternally happy.
    • [3.] Protection. Even those who walk uprightly may be brought into danger for the trial of their faith, but God is, and will be, a buckler to them, so that nothing that happens to them shall do them any real hurt, or possess them with any terrific apprehensions; they are safe, and they shall think themselves so. Fear not, Abraham; I am thy shield. It is their way, the paths of judgment in which they walk, that the Lord knows, and owns, and takes care of.
    • [4.] Grace to persevere to the end. If we depend upon God, and seek to him for wisdom, he will uphold us in our integrity, will enable us to keep the paths of judgment, however we may be tempted to turn aside out of them; for he preserves the way of his saints, that it be not perverted, and so preserves them in it safe and blameless to his heavenly kingdom. The assurances God has given us of his grace, if duly improved, will excite and quicken our endeavours in doing our duty. Work out your salvation, for God works in you.

For the Lord gives wisdom | P2-V6

The Pursuit of Wisdom Brings Security

Proverbs 2; I die daily devotional.

6 For the LORD gives wisdom; From His mouth come knowledge and understanding.


WISDOM

For the LORD gives wisdom...

“How does the Lord give me wisdom?”

I love asking myself this question because I immediately want to go to His Word and read what our Lord taught, and discover the wisdom He gives, for example:

John 7:14 But when it was now the midst of the feast Jesus went up into the temple, and began to teach. 15 The Jews then were astonished, saying, “How has this man become learned, having never been educated?” 16 So Jesus answered them and said, “My teaching is not Mine, but His who sent Me. 17 If anyone is willing to do His will, he will know of the teaching, whether it is of God or whether I speak from Myself. 18 He who speaks from himself seeks his own glory; but He who is seeking the glory of the One who sent Him, He is true, and there is no unrighteousness in Him.

Right here ^^^^, so the wisdom given me is not mine, but Christ in me; just as wisdom is being taught NOT of Christ, but of God… His Father …to these Jews.

Jesus is of the Father in glory … just as the Father is of Jesus in the flesh, and the Church is of Christ in this world … just as the Holy Spirit is of God in our bodies of faith while in this world; the flesh and blood of Jesus was a Body, a Lamb, prepared and given as the ultimate sacrifice. A sacrificial payment, we’re bought with a price:

1Co 6:20 — For you have been bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body.

1Co 7:23 — You were bought with a price; do not become slaves of men.

And so according to this wisdom of our Lord found in this text, you and I being Christian, can say that our teaching is not our own but of the Holy Spirit that lives in me and you (if you believe in Jesus to be your Lord and Savior).

“WHAT SAY YOU?!?”

Do you teach for your own glory?

According to the apostle Paul… wisdom instructs us to glorify God in our bodies, that by teaching we’re bought with a price, and not to become enslaved to this world, but rather, to live as though we’re already changed during our time of grace:

1Co 15:50 — Now I say this, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable. 51 Behold, I tell you a mystery; we will not all sleep, but we will all be changed, 52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet; for the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. 53 For this perishable must put on the imperishable, and this mortal must put on immortality.

MOUTH

From His mouth come knowledge and understanding...

So according to our verse, the mouth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, speaks through the Holy Spirit inspired in the Body of our Church.

Which means that you and I can know and understand the language of God for the glory of His will, and obey. That even though we’re in this world of sin, our bodies are built with the skin of grace, the grace of God that saves to change our bodies for His glory if we believe in His Son?

The Holy Spirit is poured out and given to all that will do this…

Rom 10:8 — But what does it say? “THE WORD IS NEAR YOU, IN YOUR MOUTH AND IN YOUR HEART”—that is, the word of faith which we are preaching,  9 that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; 10 for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation. 11 For the Scripture says, “WHOEVER BELIEVES IN HIM WILL NOT BE DISAPPOINTED.” 12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, abounding in riches for all who call on Him; 13 for “WHOEVER WILL CALL ON THE NAME OF THE LORD WILL BE SAVED.”

FAITH!

Knowledge and understanding comes through faith in the Holy Spirit living in your heart, mind, soul, and strength. And we have a responsibility to our relationship with Christ, first, before our family and friends…

…SO…

…are you living out this wisdom and teaching the knowledge and understanding of a glory that is not yours but…

CHRIST ALONE?

It is to His glory I write, and we read… together, forever. In Jesus.

Amen


RECOURCE

[BP]

Proverbs 2 (NASB)—blueletterbible.org
1 My son, if you will receive my words And treasure my commandments within you, 2 Make your ear attentive to wisdom, Incline your heart to understanding; 3 For if you cry for discernment, Lift your voice for understanding; 4 If you seek her as silver And search for her as for hidden treasures; Then you will discern the fear of the LORD And discover the knowledge of God. 6 For the LORD gives wisdom; From His mouth come knowledge and understanding. He stores up sound wisdom for the upright; He is a shield to those who walk in integrity, 8 Guarding the paths of justice, And He preserves the way of His godly ones. 9 Then you will discern righteousness and justice And equity and every good course. 10 For wisdom will enter your heart And knowledge will be pleasant to your soul; 11 Discretion will guard you, Understanding will watch over you, 12 To deliver you from the way of evil, From the man who speaks perverse things; 13 From those who leave the paths of uprightness To walk in the ways of darkness; 14 Who delight in doing evil And rejoice in the perversity of evil; 15 Whose paths are crooked, And who are devious in their ways; 16 To deliver you from the strange woman, From the adulteress who flatters with her words; 17 That leaves the companion of her youth And forgets the covenant of her God; 18 For her house sinks down to death And her tracks lead to the dead; 19 None who go to her return again, Nor do they reach the paths of life. 20 So you will walk in the way of good men And keep to the paths of the righteous. 21 For the upright will live in the land And the blameless will remain in it; 22 But the wicked will be cut off from the land And the treacherous will be uprooted from it.


COMMENTARY

Matthew Henry (P2-V6) Commentary
III. What ground we have to hope for this success in our pursuits of wisdom; we must take our encouragement herein from God only, v. 6-8.

  • 1. God has wisdom to bestow, v. 6The Lord not only is wise himself, but he gives wisdom, and that is more than the wisest men in the world can do, for it is God’s prerogative to open the understanding. All the wisdom that is in any creature is his gift, his free gift, and he gives it liberally (Jam. 1:5), has given it to many, and is still giving it; to him therefore let us apply for it.
  • 2. He has blessed the world with a revelation of his will. Out of his mouth, by the law and the prophets, by the written word and by his ministers, both which are his mouth to the children of men, come knowledge and understanding, such a discovery of truth and good as, if we admit and receive the impressions of it, will make us truly knowing and intelligent. It is both an engagement and encouragement to search after wisdom that we have the scriptures to search, in which we may find it if we seek it diligently.
  • 3. He has particularly provided that good men, who are sincerely disposed to do his will, shall have that knowledge and that understanding which are necessary for them, Jn. 7:17. Let them seek wisdom, and they shall find it; let them ask, and it shall be given them, v. 7, 8. Observe here,

My son, if you receive my words | P2-V1

The Pursuit of Wisdom Brings Security

Proverbs 2; I die daily devotional.

1 My son, if you will receive my words And treasure my commandments within you,


I love the language of promise this verse speaks; my son, if you will receive my words. I mean do you hear the confidence and truth by those words? The option is presented to us as we hear these words, and we can test them on family and friends to see how they respond. I think we’ll be surprised. I think we’ll learn by the attitude and behavior of those who hear this verse whether they’ve received these words or not, but I think the more challenging inquiry will be whether family and friends have treasured them; treasure my commandments within you.

RECEIVE AND TREASURE

Any one of us can say that, “Yah… I’ve received these words. I know the commandments by heart and believe Jesus Christ is my Lord and Savior.” But what if you know a person that will confess this and yet behave in a way contrary to the confession … it becomes a contradiction … no?

But see, whether the words have come to your ears through holy men or a broken vessel, the words themselves remain pure and true to that power they belong of—the Word of God.

So if we are going to receive these words, we must see past the human flesh to the Spirit of God; Philippians 2:12 So then, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your salvation with fear and trembling; 13 for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.

We are in absence of the time when the apostles walked the earth with Christ to testify of the glory of the Kingdom at hand, and the glory to come, the Son of Man. But the words of which these same apostles that lived so long ago remain today, being heard from ear to ear, until all will hear.

But the option remains, if we receive, and that is something only you can answer and behave to reflect. When we behave as though we’ve received the glory of Christ’s coming by these words Wisdom speaks, then the treasure of the commandments within will become who we are (Eph 3:6, Jas 2:5, Rom 8:17, Tit 3:7) according to promise.

  • How does this verse speak to you?
  • What does it mean to receive these words of wisdom?
  • What is the greatest commandment?
  • Why should I treasure these commandments within me?

RECOURCE

[BP]

Proverbs 2 (NASB)—blueletterbible.org
1 My son, if you will receive my words And treasure my commandments within you, 2 Make your ear attentive to wisdom, Incline your heart to understanding; 3 For if you cry for discernment, Lift your voice for understanding; 4 If you seek her as silver And search for her as for hidden treasures; Then you will discern the fear of the LORD And discover the knowledge of God. 6 For the LORD gives wisdom; From His mouth come knowledge and understanding. He stores up sound wisdom for the upright; He is a shield to those who walk in integrity, 8 Guarding the paths of justice, And He preserves the way of His godly ones. 9 Then you will discern righteousness and justice And equity and every good course. 10 For wisdom will enter your heart And knowledge will be pleasant to your soul; 11 Discretion will guard you, Understanding will watch over you, 12 To deliver you from the way of evil, From the man who speaks perverse things; 13 From those who leave the paths of uprightness To walk in the ways of darkness; 14 Who delight in doing evil And rejoice in the perversity of evil; 15 Whose paths are crooked, And who are devious in their ways; 16 To deliver you from the strange woman, From the adulteress who flatters with her words; 17 That leaves the companion of her youth And forgets the covenant of her God; 18 For her house sinks down to death And her tracks lead to the dead; 19 None who go to her return again, Nor do they reach the paths of life. 20 So you will walk in the way of good men And keep to the paths of the righteous. 21 For the upright will live in the land And the blameless will remain in it; 22 But the wicked will be cut off from the land And the treacherous will be uprooted from it.


COMMENTARY

Chapter 2

Solomon, having foretold the destruction of those who are obstinate in their impiety, in this chapter applies himself to those who are willing to be taught; and,

  • I. He shows them that, if they would diligently use the means of knowledge and grace, they should obtain of God the knowledge and grace which they seek (v. 1-9).
  • II. He shows them of what unspeakable advantage it would be to them.
    • 1. It would preserve them from the snares of evil men (v. 10-15) and of evil women (v. 16-19).
    • 2. It would direct them into, and keep them in, the way of good men (v. 20-22).

So that in this chapter we are taught both how to get wisdom and how to use it when we have it, that we may neither seek it, nor receive it in vain.

Matthew Henry (P2-V1) Commentary
Job had asked, long before this, Where shall wisdom be found? Whence cometh wisdom? (Job 28:1220) and he had given this general answer (v. 23), God knoweth the place of it; but Solomon here goes further, and tells us both where we may find it and how we may get it. We are here told,

  • I. What means we must use that we may obtain wisdom.
    • 1. We must closely attend to the word of God, for that is the word of wisdom, which is able to make us wise unto salvation, v. 1, 2.
      • (1.) We must be convinced that the words of God are the fountain and standard of wisdom and understanding, and that we need not desire to be wiser than they will make us. We must incline our ear and apply our hearts to them, as to wisdom or understanding itself. Many wise things may be found in human compositions, but divine revelation, and true religion built upon it, are all wisdom.
      • (2.) We must, accordingly, receive the word of God with all readiness of mind, and bid it welcome, even the commandments as well as the promises, without murmuring or disputing. Speak, Lord, for thy servant hears.
      • (3.) We must hide them with us, as we do our treasures, which we are afraid of being robbed of. We must not only receive, but retain, the word of God, and lodge it in our hearts, that it may be always ready to us.
      • (4.) We must incline our ear to them; we must lay hold on all opportunities of hearing the word of God, and listen to it with attention and seriousness, as those that are afraid of letting it slip.
      • (5.) We must apply our hearts to them, else inclining the ear to them will stand us in no stead.

They would not accept my counsel | P1-V30

Wisdom Warns 

Proverbs 1; I die daily devotional.

30 “They would not accept my counsel, They spurned all my reproof.


Have you ever prayed over your donut expecting the sugar its made of to change the unhealthy nature of its effect; when in all reality, we just got fatter by our insulin getting pissed about the placebo our mind is selling. “We’re getting phatter!” “No! You’re NOT!”—Insulin yells back. I do this, also, with caffeine; it’s actually a very bad habit, and even worse to lie convinced its truth by the mere “justification” of a prayer. Can you imagine, we’re in a court of law, the judge just gave us the verdict: *The gavel comes down, WHAM!* “Guilty!” “BUT BUT, JUDGE! I’M JUSTIFIED BECAUSE I PRAYED BEFORE, DURING, AND AFTER THE MURDER—SO IT DOESN’T COUNT!” “Son, are you an idiot?”

NOT ACCEPTABLE

Okay, the judge doesn’t have to say that, but… is it a fair question if put another way? “Son, why are we in court of law if lawlessness is justified in prayer?” What do you think? If we Christians say we believe and yet continue in our sin as we pray for forgiveness, is the sin justified? Is it not wise to become educated about what we are eating, of which once learned, to stop eating the sin with prayer as though we’re right with God when… we’re not. James 1:26 If anyone thinks himself to be religious, and yet does not bridle his tongue but deceives his own heart, this man’s religion is worthless. 27 Pure and undefiled religion in the sight of our God and Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself unstained by the world. If I know that caffeine can cause infertility in me, and yet pray it doesn’t, will not change the truth about that drug even if someone else has four kids being completely ignorant (or not) of that fact about “too much” caffeine. And that’s not to tempt people who don’t want kids either, so don’t think you can get away with that, said facetiously. What do you think? Is it important that we Christians exemplify the nature of prayer appropriately, and understand the risks involved to the choices we make or don’t make? I think so because we are the Church, the Light to the world, a Beacon of faith, truth, hope, and Love. James 5:19 My brethren, if any among you strays from the truth and one turns him back, 20 let him know that he who turns a sinner from the error of his way will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins.

  • Why do you, and I, not accept counsel?
  • Do you, or I, know someone who struggles with reproof?
  • What does accepting the counsel of Wisdom look like?
  • How can we learn to accept reproof?
  • How can we serve those who struggle against reproof?

RECOURCE

Proverbs 1 (NASB)—blueletterbible.org
1 The proverbs of Solomon the son of David, king of Israel: 2 To know wisdom and instruction, To discern the sayings of understanding, 3 To receive instruction in wise behavior, Righteousness, justice and equity; To give prudence to the naïve, To the youth knowledge and discretion, 5 A wise man will hear and increase in learning, And a man of understanding will acquire wise counsel, 6 To understand a proverb and a figure, The words of the wise and their riddles. 7 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; Fools despise wisdom and instruction.  8 Hear, my son, your father’s instruction And do not forsake your mother’s teaching; 9 Indeed, they are a graceful wreath to your head And ornaments about your neck. 10 My son, if sinners entice you, Do not consent. 11 If they say, “Come with us, Let us lie in wait for blood, Let us ambush the innocent without cause; 12 Let us swallow them alive like Sheol, Even whole, as those who go down to the pit; 13 We will find all kinds of precious wealth, We will fill our houses with spoil; 14 Throw in your lot with us, We shall all have one purse,” 15 My son, do not walk in the way with them. Keep your feet from their path, 16 For their feet run to evil And they hasten to shed blood. 17 Indeed, it is useless to spread the baited net In the sight of any bird; 18 But they lie in wait for their own blood; They ambush their own lives. 19 So are the ways of everyone who gains by violence; It takes away the life of its possessors. Wisdom Warns 20 Wisdom shouts in the street, She lifts her voice in the square; 21 At the head of the noisy streets she cries out; At the entrance of the gates in the city she utters her sayings: 22 “How long, O naïve ones, will you love being simple-minded? And scoffers delight themselves in scoffing And fools hate knowledge? 23  “Turn to my reproof, Behold, I will pour out my spirit on you; I will make my words known to you. 24 “Because I called and you refused, I stretched out my hand and no one paid attention; 25 And you neglected all my counsel And did not want my reproof; 26 I will also laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your dread comes, 27 When your dread comes like a storm And your calamity comes like a whirlwind, When distress and anguish come upon you. 28 “Then they will call on me, but I will not answer; They will seek me diligently but they will not find me, 29 Because they hated knowledge And did not choose the fear of the LORD. 30 “They would not accept my counsel, They spurned all my reproof. 31 “So they shall eat of the fruit of their own way And be satiated with their own devices. 32 “For the waywardness of the naïve will kill them, And the complacency of fools will destroy them. 33 “But he who listens to me shall live securely And will be at ease from the dread of evil.”


COMMENTARY

Matthew Henry (P1-V30) Commentary
[4.] Now they are eager upon their own way, and fond of their own devices; but then they will have enough of them (v. 31), according to the proverb, Let men drink as they brew; they shall eat the fruit of their own way; their wages shall be according to their work, and, as was their choice, so shall their doom be, Gal. 6:7, 8. Note,

  • First, There is a natural tendency in sin to destruction, Jam. 1:15. Sinners are certainly miserable if they do but eat the fruit of their own way.
  • Secondly, Those that perish must thank themselves, and can lay no blame upon any other. It is their own device; let them make their boast of it. God chooses their delusions, Isa. 66:4.

Because they hated knowledge | P1-V29

Wisdom Warns 

Proverbs 1; I die daily devotional.

29 Because they hated knowledge And did not choose the fear of the LORD.


When I think of the idea of hating knowledge, I think of the apostle Paul telling me… Galatians 6:11 See with what large letters I am writing to you with my own hand. 12 Those who desire to make a good showing in the flesh try to compel you to be circumcised, simply so that they will not be persecuted for the cross of Christ. 13 For those who are circumcised do not even keep the Law themselves, but they desire to have you circumcised so that they may boast in your flesh. I was guilty of this wrong in the past for the comfort of myself, not wanting to share the gospel—to avoid the persecution of the cross—for the sake of my environment mixed with tempting desires to experience in this life, or what’s worse, to share the gospel with words of faith, but a heart filled with fear and want, not actually taking serious the power of the Word—my faith was in vain.

HATED KNOWLEDGE

When I think about my disobedience to God I think of what the bond-servant James says… James 1:21 Therefore, putting aside all filthiness and all that remains of wickedness, in humility receive the word implanted, which is able to save your souls. 22 But prove yourselves doers of the word, and not merely hearers who delude themselves. 23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks at his natural face in a mirror; 24 for once he has looked at himself and gone away, he has immediately forgotten what kind of person he was. 25 But one who looks intently at the perfect law, the law of liberty, and abides by it, not having become a forgetful hearer but an effectual doer, this man will be blessed in what he does. I ask the question, “Why do people choose not the fear of the Lord?” And then clarity comes, the answers’ so evident, so true; yet here I remain as a man regretful of who I once was… the man in the mirror, until … I looked intently upon the perfect law of liberty. However, there are still those present with us today that choose rather to hate the knowledge of the cross and don’t fear the Lord. Don’t lose hope, keep praying for these people, but remain faithful to respect the justice of God in Christ our Lord. Let’s not fear persecution and keep looking intently at the perfect law of liberty.

  • What do you, and I, think of to be “hated knowledge”?
  • Why do these people choose not the fear of the Lord?
  • Are you and I looking intently at the perfect law of liberty?
  • How can we serve those who hate knowledge?
  • What can we do about those who don’t fear the Lord?

RECOURCE

Proverbs 1 (NASB)—blueletterbible.org
1 The proverbs of Solomon the son of David, king of Israel: 2 To know wisdom and instruction, To discern the sayings of understanding, 3 To receive instruction in wise behavior, Righteousness, justice and equity; To give prudence to the naïve, To the youth knowledge and discretion, 5 A wise man will hear and increase in learning, And a man of understanding will acquire wise counsel, 6 To understand a proverb and a figure, The words of the wise and their riddles. 7 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; Fools despise wisdom and instruction.  8 Hear, my son, your father’s instruction And do not forsake your mother’s teaching; 9 Indeed, they are a graceful wreath to your head And ornaments about your neck. 10 My son, if sinners entice you, Do not consent. 11 If they say, “Come with us, Let us lie in wait for blood, Let us ambush the innocent without cause; 12 Let us swallow them alive like Sheol, Even whole, as those who go down to the pit; 13 We will find all kinds of precious wealth, We will fill our houses with spoil; 14 Throw in your lot with us, We shall all have one purse,” 15 My son, do not walk in the way with them. Keep your feet from their path, 16 For their feet run to evil And they hasten to shed blood. 17 Indeed, it is useless to spread the baited net In the sight of any bird; 18 But they lie in wait for their own blood; They ambush their own lives. 19 So are the ways of everyone who gains by violence; It takes away the life of its possessors. Wisdom Warns 20 Wisdom shouts in the street, She lifts her voice in the square; 21 At the head of the noisy streets she cries out; At the entrance of the gates in the city she utters her sayings: 22 “How long, O naïve ones, will you love being simple-minded? And scoffers delight themselves in scoffing And fools hate knowledge? 23  “Turn to my reproof, Behold, I will pour out my spirit on you; I will make my words known to you. 24 “Because I called and you refused, I stretched out my hand and no one paid attention; 25 And you neglected all my counsel And did not want my reproof; 26 I will also laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your dread comes, 27 When your dread comes like a storm And your calamity comes like a whirlwind, When distress and anguish come upon you. 28 “Then they will call on me, but I will not answer; They will seek me diligently but they will not find me, 29 Because they hated knowledge And did not choose the fear of the LORD. 30 “They would not accept my counsel, They spurned all my reproof. 31 “So they shall eat of the fruit of their own way And be satiated with their own devices. 32 “For the waywardness of the naïve will kill them, And the complacency of fools will destroy them. 33 “But he who listens to me shall live securely And will be at ease from the dread of evil.”


COMMENTARY

Matthew Henry (P1-V29) Commentary
[4.] Now they are eager upon their own way, and fond of their own devices; but then they will have enough of them (v. 31), according to the proverb, Let men drink as they brew; they shall eat the fruit of their own way; their wages shall be according to their work, and, as was their choice, so shall their doom be, Gal. 6:7, 8. Note,

  • First, There is a natural tendency in sin to destruction, Jam. 1:15. Sinners are certainly miserable if they do but eat the fruit of their own way.
  • Secondly, Those that perish must thank themselves, and can lay no blame upon any other. It is their own device; let them make their boast of it. God chooses their delusions, Isa. 66:4.

But I will not answer and they will not find me | P1-V28

Wisdom Warns 

Proverbs 1; I die daily devotional.

28 “Then they will call on me, but I will not answer; They will seek me diligently but they will not find me, 


Jesus tells us about a poor man named Lazarus who was laid at a rich man’s gate, and when both these men died, Lazarus was carried by angels whereas the rich man was buried. Lazarus experienced a place of peace and comfort whereas the rich man… Luke 16:23 In Hades lifted up his eyes, being in torment, and *saw Abraham far away and Lazarus in his bosom.  24  And he cried out and said, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus so that he may dip the tip of his finger in water and cool off my tongue, for I am in agony in this flame.’

NOT ANSWER

However, the request of the rich man from Hades could not be met. The justice of God has fixed a 26 …great chasm, so that those who wish to come over from here to you will not be able, and that none may cross over from there to us.’ And so the rich man understanding the truth of his life and the nature of his situation makes another request to father Abraham for Lazarus. 27 And he said, ‘Then I beg you, father, that you send him to my father’s house— 28 for I have five brothers—in order that he may warn them, so that they will not also come to this place of torment.’ The rich man knew, that hearing Moses and the Prophets would not persuade his brothers’ belief of that place so, he begged, …if someone goes to them from the dead, they will repent!’ But father Abraham, knowing that the law of Moses and the Word of the Prophets are in fact Jesus Himself—descended from the throne of Heaven born in the flesh of mankind as the only offering qualified to convince the world—would not be enough for those brothers. ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be persuaded even if someone rises from the dead.’”

  • Have I heard Moses and the Prophets?
  • What do Moses and the Prophets say?
  • Is Jesus the Word of God come in the flesh?
  • How do I resemble the rich man?
  • What does it mean to be Lazarus?

RECOURCE

Proverbs 1 (NASB)—blueletterbible.org
1 The proverbs of Solomon the son of David, king of Israel: 2 To know wisdom and instruction, To discern the sayings of understanding, 3 To receive instruction in wise behavior, Righteousness, justice and equity; To give prudence to the naïve, To the youth knowledge and discretion, 5 A wise man will hear and increase in learning, And a man of understanding will acquire wise counsel, 6 To understand a proverb and a figure, The words of the wise and their riddles. 7 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; Fools despise wisdom and instruction.  8 Hear, my son, your father’s instruction And do not forsake your mother’s teaching; 9 Indeed, they are a graceful wreath to your head And ornaments about your neck. 10 My son, if sinners entice you, Do not consent. 11 If they say, “Come with us, Let us lie in wait for blood, Let us ambush the innocent without cause; 12 Let us swallow them alive like Sheol, Even whole, as those who go down to the pit; 13 We will find all kinds of precious wealth, We will fill our houses with spoil; 14 Throw in your lot with us, We shall all have one purse,” 15 My son, do not walk in the way with them. Keep your feet from their path, 16 For their feet run to evil And they hasten to shed blood. 17 Indeed, it is useless to spread the baited net In the sight of any bird; 18 But they lie in wait for their own blood; They ambush their own lives. 19 So are the ways of everyone who gains by violence; It takes away the life of its possessors. Wisdom Warns 20 Wisdom shouts in the street, She lifts her voice in the square; 21 At the head of the noisy streets she cries out; At the entrance of the gates in the city she utters her sayings: 22 “How long, O naïve ones, will you love being simple-minded? And scoffers delight themselves in scoffing And fools hate knowledge? 23  “Turn to my reproof, Behold, I will pour out my spirit on you; I will make my words known to you. 24 “Because I called and you refused, I stretched out my hand and no one paid attention; 25 And you neglected all my counsel And did not want my reproof; 26 I will also laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your dread comes, 27 When your dread comes like a storm And your calamity comes like a whirlwind, When distress and anguish come upon you. 28 “Then they will call on me, but I will not answer; They will seek me diligently but they will not find me, 29 Because they hated knowledge And did not choose the fear of the LORD. 30 “They would not accept my counsel, They spurned all my reproof. 31 “So they shall eat of the fruit of their own way And be satiated with their own devices. 32 “For the waywardness of the naïve will kill them, And the complacency of fools will destroy them. 33 “But he who listens to me shall live securely And will be at ease from the dread of evil.”


COMMENTARY

Matthew Henry (P1-V28) Commentary

  • [2.] Now God pities their folly, but he will then laugh at their calamity (v. 26): “I also will laugh at your distress, even as you laughed at my counsel.’ Those that ridicule religion will thereby but make themselves ridiculous before all the world. The righteous will laugh at them (Ps. 52:6), for God himself will. It intimates that they shall be for ever shut out of God’s compassions; they have so long sinned against mercy that they have now quite sinned it away. His eye shall not spare, neither will he have pity. Nay, his justice being glorified in their ruin, he will be pleased with it, though now he would rather they should turn and live. Ah! I will ease me of my adversaries.
  • [3.] Now God is ready to hear their prayers and to meet them with mercy, if they would but seek to him for it; but then the door will be shut, and they shall cry in vain (v. 28): “Then shall they call upon me when it is too late, Lord, Lord, open to us. They would then gladly be beholden to that mercy which now they reject and make light of; but I will not answer, because, when I called, they would not answer;’ all the answer then will be, Depart from me, I know you not. This has been the case of some even in this life, as of Saul, whom God answered not by Urim or prophets; but, ordinarily, while there is life there is room for prayer and hope of speeding, and therefore this must refer to the inexorable justice of the last judgment. Then those that slighted God will seek him early (that is, earnestly), but in vain; they shall not find him, because they sought him not when he might be found, Isa. 55:6. The rich man in hell begged, but was denied.

Wisdom shouts in the street | P1-V20

Wisdom Warns 

Proverbs 1; I die daily devotional.

20 Wisdom shouts in the street, She lifts her voice in the square;


We’ve just come out of some daily dying to the temptations sinners impress upon the innocent by the agent of evil—Satan. But now we enter into the severity of wisdoms call, and what it means when we don’t listen to the counsel of God.

WISDOM SHOUTS

I’ve never been Manhattan, but imagine you’re walking in the middle of time square of New York City. You’re walking and you begin to hear this voice coming from your conscience to “stop, watch, and listen”. So you do, and you observe as you feel this experience to your life being interrupted by this profound voice that compels you to stop, watch, and listen. This voice then begins to draw your attention to an interpretation of words that is not of this world, although personal to you. You begin to see your life stretched out in the course of time, and hear Wisdom lift her voice — this course satisfies a means to die. But listen to me, and you will live. Then you recall words spoken from long ago from men moved by the Holy Spirit of God. And there you are left in the square with a choice; “Do I follow this voice of Wisdom in my conscience, or do I suppress the motion into the darkness of ignorance and remain simple-minded on my present course?

  • Do I experience conviction?
  • Why am I convicted?
  • Why is there evil in the world?
  • Why is there good in the world?
  • What does death mean?
  • Do I listen to the voice of Wisdom?
  • Who are the men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God?

RECOURCE

Proverbs 1 (NASB)—blueletterbible.org
1 The proverbs of Solomon the son of David, king of Israel: 2 To know wisdom and instruction, To discern the sayings of understanding, 3 To receive instruction in wise behavior, Righteousness, justice and equity; To give prudence to the naïve, To the youth knowledge and discretion, 5 A wise man will hear and increase in learning, And a man of understanding will acquire wise counsel, 6 To understand a proverb and a figure, The words of the wise and their riddles. 7 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; Fools despise wisdom and instruction.  8 Hear, my son, your father’s instruction And do not forsake your mother’s teaching; 9 Indeed, they are a graceful wreath to your head And ornaments about your neck. 10 My son, if sinners entice you, Do not consent. 11 If they say, “Come with us, Let us lie in wait for blood, Let us ambush the innocent without cause; 12 Let us swallow them alive like Sheol, Even whole, as those who go down to the pit; 13 We will find all kinds of precious wealth, We will fill our houses with spoil; 14 Throw in your lot with us, We shall all have one purse,” 15 My son, do not walk in the way with them. Keep your feet from their path, 16 For their feet run to evil And they hasten to shed blood. 17 Indeed, it is useless to spread the baited net In the sight of any bird; 18 But they lie in wait for their own blood; They ambush their own lives. 19 So are the ways of everyone who gains by violence; It takes away the life of its possessors. 20 Wisdom shouts in the street, She lifts her voice in the square; 21 At the head of the noisy streets she cries out; At the entrance of the gates in the city she utters her sayings: 22 “How long, O naïve ones, will you love being simple-minded? And scoffers delight themselves in scoffing And fools hate knowledge? 23  “Turn to my reproof, Behold, I will pour out my spirit on you; I will make my words known to you. 24 “Because I called and you refused, I stretched out my hand and no one paid attention; 25 And you neglected all my counsel And did not want my reproof; 26 I will also laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your dread comes, 27 When your dread comes like a storm And your calamity comes like a whirlwind, When distress and anguish come upon you. 28 “Then they will call on me, but I will not answer; They will seek me diligently but they will not find me, 29 Because they hated knowledge And did not choose the fear of the LORD. 30 “They would not accept my counsel, They spurned all my reproof. 31 “So they shall eat of the fruit of their own way And be satiated with their own devices. 32 “For the waywardness of the naïve will kill them, And the complacency of fools will destroy them. 33 “But he who listens to me shall live securely And will be at ease from the dread of evil.”


COMMENTARY

Matthew Henry (P1-V20) Commentary
Solomon, having shown how dangerous it is to hearken to the temptations of Satan, here shows how dangerous it is not to hearken to the calls of God, which we shall for ever rue the neglect of. Observe,

  • I. By whom God calls to us-by wisdom. It is wisdom that crieth without. The word is plural-wisdoms, for, as there is infinite wisdom in God, so there is the manifold wisdom of God, Eph. 3:10. God speaks to the children of men by all the kinds of wisdom, and, as in every will, so in every word, of God there is a counsel.
    • 1. Human understanding is wisdom, the light and law of nature, the powers and faculties of reason, and the office of conscience, Job 38:36. By these God speaks to the children of men, and reasons with them. The spirit of a man is the candle of the Lord; and, wherever men go, they may hear a voice behind them, saying, This is the way; and the voice of conscience is the voice of God, and not always a still small voice, but sometimes it cries.
    • 2. Civil government is wisdom; it is God’s ordinance; magistrates are his vicegerents. God by David had said to the fools, Deal not foolishly, Ps. 75:4In the opening of the gates, and in the places of concourse, where courts were kept, the judges, the wisdom of the nation, called to wicked people, in God’s name, to repent and reform.
    • 3. Divine revelation is wisdom; all its dictates, all its laws, are wise as wisdom itself. God does, by the written word, by the law of Moses, which sets before us the blessing and the curse, by the priests’ lips which keep knowledge, by his servants the prophets, and all the ministers of this word, declare his mind to sinners, and give them warning as plainly as that which is proclaimed in the streets or courts of judicature by the criers. God, in his word, not only opens the case, but argues it with the children of men. Come, now, and let us reason together, Isa. 1:18.
    • 4. Christ himself is Wisdom, is Wisdoms, for in him are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge, and he is the centre of all divine revelation, not only the essential Wisdom, but the eternal Word, by whom God speaks to us and to whom he has committed all judgment; he it is therefore who here both pleads with sinners and passes sentence on them. He calls himself Wisdom, Lu. 7:35.

Let us swallow them alive like Sheol | P1-V12

The Enticement of Sinners

Proverbs 1; I die daily devotional.

12 Let us swallow them alive like Sheol, Even whole, as those who go down to the pit; 


For those of us who have intimate knowledge by the experience of sin can be enticed to educate the innocent by our experience of sin. We can become the very nature of these current verses of our chapter: 10 My son, if sinners entice you, Do not consent. 11 If they say, “Come with us, Let us lie in wait for blood, Let us ambush the innocent without cause; 12 Let us swallow them alive like Sheol, Even whole, as those who go down to the pit; 13 We will find all kinds of precious wealth, We will fill our houses with spoil; 14 Throw in your lot with us, We shall all have one purse,”

The sinful nature of our flesh desires the innocent to understand the nature of our pleasure, after all; we want what the innocent has—innocence. But why? Because innocence is the essence of goodness, and evil is incapable of that essence. there is a thought experiment out there called “The Evil God” challenge, and the problem is that the arguments by Christians defending a good God can be turned around and used also for defending an evil God, thus “defeating” our cause.

SWALLOW THEM ALIVE

Or… at least… that is what the skeptics might contemplate or worse, the atheists’ willingly believe.

However, the truth is, God is good because He is innocent. But the evil, that is not innocent, hates that fact, and is why Wisdom is teaching us not to be the sinner. The sinners desire is to swallow us alive because they are dead, and they want us to be dead with them. But this is why when we believe in Christ, we desire baptism, and church, and the Word of God (the bible). What does Jesus say to us sinners?

John 5:13 But the man who was healed did not know who it was, for Jesus had slipped away while there was a crowd in that place. 14 Afterward Jesus *found him in the temple and said to him, “Behold, you have become well; do not sin anymore, so that nothing worse happens to you.” 15 The man went away, and told the Jews that it was Jesus who had made him well. 16 For this reason the Jews were persecuting Jesus, because He was doing these things on the Sabbath. 17 But He answered them, “My Father is working until now, and I Myself am working.”

Jesus said, “Behold, you have become well; do not sin anymore, so that nothing worse happens to you.” We, by grace through faith, have become well. That means we are different, we have changed! What does the apostle Paul say?

 1 Corinthians 15:51 Behold, I tell you a mystery; we will not all sleep, but we will all be changed, 52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet; for the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. 53 For this perishable must put on the imperishable, and this mortal must put on immortality. 54 But when this perishable will have put on the imperishable, and this mortal will have put on immortality, then will come about the saying that is written, “DEATH IS SWALLOWED UP in victory. 55 O DEATH, WHERE IS YOUR VICTORY? O DEATH, WHERE IS YOUR STING?” 56 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law; 57 but thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

  • Are you dead?
  • Are you still sinning?
  • Do you believe in Jesus Christ?
  • Are you changed by faith?
  • Are you alive in Christ?

RECOURSE

Proverbs 1 (NASB)—blueletterbible.org
1 The proverbs of Solomon the son of David, king of Israel: 2 To know wisdom and instruction, To discern the sayings of understanding, 3 To receive instruction in wise behavior, Righteousness, justice and equity; To give prudence to the naïve, To the youth knowledge and discretion, 5 A wise man will hear and increase in learning, And a man of understanding will acquire wise counsel, 6 To understand a proverb and a figure, The words of the wise and their riddles. 7 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; Fools despise wisdom and instruction.  8 Hear, my son, your father’s instruction And do not forsake your mother’s teaching; 9 Indeed, they are a graceful wreath to your head And ornaments about your neck. 10 My son, if sinners entice you, Do not consent. 11 If they say, “Come with us, Let us lie in wait for blood, Let us ambush the innocent without cause; 12 Let us swallow them alive like Sheol, Even whole, as those who go down to the pit; 13 We will find all kinds of precious wealth, We will fill our houses with spoil; 14 Throw in your lot with us, We shall all have one purse,” 15 My son, do not walk in the way with them. Keep your feet from their path, 16 For their feet run to evil And they hasten to shed blood. 17 Indeed, it is useless to spread the baited net In the sight of any bird; 18 But they lie in wait for their own blood; They ambush their own lives. 19 So are the ways of everyone who gains by violence; It takes away the life of its possessors. Wisdom Warns 20 Wisdom shouts in the street, She lifts her voice in the square; 21 At the head of the noisy streets she cries out; At the entrance of the gates in the city she utters her sayings: 22 “How long, O naïve ones, will you love being simple-minded? And scoffers delight themselves in scoffing And fools hate knowledge? 23  “Turn to my reproof, Behold, I will pour out my spirit on you; I will make my words known to you. 24 “Because I called and you refused, I stretched out my hand and no one paid attention; 25 And you neglected all my counsel And did not want my reproof; 26 I will also laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your dread comes, 27 When your dread comes like a storm And your calamity comes like a whirlwind, When distress and anguish come upon you. 28 “Then they will call on me, but I will not answer; They will seek me diligently but they will not find me, 29 Because they hated knowledge And did not choose the fear of the LORD. 30 “They would not accept my counsel, They spurned all my reproof. 31 “So they shall eat of the fruit of their own way And be satiated with their own devices. 32 “For the waywardness of the naïve will kill them, And the complacency of fools will destroy them. 33 “But he who listens to me shall live securely And will be at ease from the dread of evil.”


COMMENTARY

Matthew Henry (P1-V12) Commentary
Here Solomon gives another general rule to young people, in order to their finding out, and keeping in, the paths of wisdom, and that is to take heed of the snare of bad company. David’s psalms begin with this caution, and so do Solomon’s proverbs; for nothing is more destructive, both to a lively devotion and to a regular conversation (v. 10): “My son, whom I love, and have a tender concern for, if sinners entice thee, consent thou not.’ This is good advice for parents to give their children when they send them abroad into the world; it is the same that St. Peter gave to his new converts, (Acts 2:40), Save yourselves from this untoward generation. Observe,

  • 1. How industrious wicked people are to seduce others into the paths of the destroyer: they will entice. Sinners love company in sin; the angels that fell were tempters almost as soon as they were sinners. They do not threaten or argue, but entice with flattery and fair speech; with a bait they draw the unwary young man to the hook. But they mistake if they think that by bringing others to partake with them in their guilt, and to be bound, as it were, in the bond with them, they shall have the less to pay themselves; for they will have so much the more to answer for.
  • 2. How cautious young people should be that they be not seduced by them: “Consent thou not; and then, though they entice thee, they cannot force thee. Do not say as they say, nor do as they do or would have thee to do; have no fellowship with them.’ To enforce this caution,
    • I. He represents the fallacious reasonings which sinners use in their enticements, and the arts of wheedling which they have for the beguiling of unstable souls. He specifies highwaymen, who do what they can to draw others into their gang, v. 11-14. See here what they would have the young man to do: “Come with us (v. 11); let us have thy company.’ At first they pretend to ask no more; but the courtship rises higher (v. 14): “Cast in thy lot among us; come in partner with us, join thy force to ours, and let us resolve to live and die together: thou shalt fare as we fare; and let us all have one purse, that what we get together we may spend merrily together,’ for that is it they aim at. Two unreasonable insatiable lusts they propose to themselves the gratification of, and therewith entice their pray into the snare:-
      • 1. Their cruelty. They thirst after blood, and hate those that are innocent and never gave them any provocation, because by their honesty and industry they shame and condemn them: “Let us therefore lay wait for their blood, and lurk privily for them; they are conscious to themselves of no crime and consequently apprehensive of no danger, but travel unarmed; therefore we shall make the more easy prey of them. And, O how sweet it will be to swallow them up alive!’ v. 12. These bloody men would do this as greedily as the hungry lion devours the lamb. If it be objected, “The remains of the murdered will betray the murderers;’ they answer, “No danger of that; we will swallow them whole as those that are buried.’ Who could imagine that human nature should degenerate so far that it should ever be a pleasure to one man to destroy another!
      • 2. Their covetousness. They hope to get a good booty by it (v. 13): “We shall find all precious substance by following this trade. What though we venture our necks by it? we shall fill our houses with spoil.’ See here,
        • (1.) The idea they have of worldly wealth. They call it precious substance; whereas it is neither substance nor precious; it is a shadow; it is vanity, especially that which is got by robbery, Ps. 62:10. It is as that which is not, which will give a man no solid satisfaction. It is cheap, it is common, yet, in their account, it is precious, and therefore they will hazard their lives, and perhaps their souls, in pursuit of it. It is the ruining mistake of thousands that they over-value the wealth of this world and look on it as precious substance.
        • (2.) The abundance of it which they promise themselves: We shall fill our houses with it. Those who trade with sin promise themselves mighty bargains, and that it will turn to a vast account (All this will I give thee, says the tempter); but they only dream that they eat; the housefuls dwindle into scarcely a handful, like the grass on the house-tops.

Increase in learning and acquire wise counsel | P1-V5

The Usefulness of Proverbs

Proverbs 1; I die daily devotional

 5 A wise man will hear and increase in learning, And a man of understanding will acquire wise counsel,

The previous devos are focused on becoming aware of our awareness, wait … what? 1 The proverbs of Solomon the son of David, king of Israel: 2 To know wisdom and instruction, To discern the sayings of understanding, 3 To receive instruction in wise behavior, Righteousness, justice and equity; To give prudence to the naïve, To the youth knowledge and discretion, 5 A wise man will hear and increase in learning, And a man of understanding will acquire wise counsel, 6 To understand a proverb and a figure, The words of the wise and their riddles. Yes, until tomorrow, our proverbs are focused on becoming aware of our being alive, and alive in an environment of Wisdom. Wisdom is setting our environment for appropriate development; for growth in a world and realm of two encompassing forces: good and evil.

As my words are being written, we are innocent of their consequences. The same is understood with the hearing of these proverbs until we listen to their instruction; at which point we become responsible to our understanding of these instructions. So why learn them? Why incline our ears to hear these words given to Solomon by the power of God through Jesus Christ—the Word of God? Those answers are disclosed in the book of Revelation, but we don’t find ourselves in that experience yet. What I’m about to write next is kind of a far off thought, question rather, of curiosity to the knowledge that the place of Christ is described, but not the place of Satan. Have you ever wondered why the lake of fire is described as no more than a place of eternal punishment that burns—Hell? However, the new heavens and new earth are described in all its good, glory and magnificence, and of course the Bride of Christ—New Jerusalem—is also described in all Her radiant Truth.

What are we to make ourselves of this Truth we discover to hear ever so gently?

INCREASE IN LEARNING

This increase in learning I understand to be a preconception of what it means to be humble, because only God is all-knowing. And our responsibility to this instruction is to be always seeking the counsel of our heavenly Father in Christ our Lord. That, at the very least (for me), is what it means to worship God, to sing praise and spiritual song. The quality of such a state at its core is innocence to the experience of sin. The humble doesn’t point the finger as one who compares sin with sin, as though my sin is less appalling than yours, but instead acknowledges their sin in repentance and lives forgiven with hope.

WISE COUNSEL

As we grow in our faith to the knowledge of God, we’re instructed to acquire wise counsel. What this looks like from my viewpoint is a collection of pens (after all, I am a writer) and the ink of these pens of color signify my counsel.

  • black & white (God) [Father]
  • red (Jesus) [Son]
  • purple (Helper) [Holy Spirit]
  • yellow (women of faith) [fire]
  • blue (men of faith) [water]

True story, my favorite colors are indigo blue and neon orange; these specific colors reveal things about my personality that I have yet to understand, but look forward to discovering more about it as we move through life together. Counsel is much like the function of these colors as each color, specific to our person, represents a hierarchy. I have yet to exercise this consciously, but what happens when—I or you—ask a question (specific to our person) to a people that know us intimately (spiritually) that only the Holy Spirit can answer? What this might look like is being miserable at our jobs; what we do as far as an occupation that pays the bills, but is not at all what we’d hoped to-be-stuck doing, the rest of our lives. And so we go to certain people for insight, guidance, and help in navigating our discontentment while discovering more and more about ourselves. Some of our counsel might tell us to quit our job for what we mean to accomplish whereas other counsel might reveal treasurable aspects about our current occupation that we’d missed and outweighs the discontentment (joy in what we do is revived). Only the Holy Spirit knows these qualities about ourselves if our counsel is in Christ.

  • What are you learning?
  • Who is your counsel?
  • Are you content?
  • Is your counsel in Christ?
  • Is your counsel content?

RECOURSE

Proverbs 1 (NASB)—blueletterbible.org
1 The proverbs of Solomon the son of David, king of Israel: 2 To know wisdom and instruction, To discern the sayings of understanding, 3 To receive instruction in wise behavior, Righteousness, justice and equity; To give prudence to the naïve, To the youth knowledge and discretion, 5 A wise man will hear and increase in learning, And a man of understanding will acquire wise counsel, 6 To understand a proverb and a figure, The words of the wise and their riddles. 7 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; Fools despise wisdom and instruction. The Enticement of Sinners 8 Hear, my son, your father’s instruction And do not forsake your mother’s teaching; 9 Indeed, they are a graceful wreath to your head And ornaments about your neck. 10 My son, if sinners entice you, Do not consent. 11 If they say, “Come with us, Let us lie in wait for blood, Let us ambush the innocent without cause; 12 Let us swallow them alive like Sheol, Even whole, as those who go down to the pit; 13 We will find all kinds of precious wealth, We will fill our houses with spoil; 14 Throw in your lot with us, We shall all have one purse,” 15 My son, do not walk in the way with them. Keep your feet from their path, 16 For their feet run to evil And they hasten to shed blood. 17 Indeed, it is useless to spread the baited net In the sight of any bird; 18 But they lie in wait for their own blood; They ambush their own lives. 19 So are the ways of everyone who gains by violence; It takes away the life of its possessors. Wisdom Warns 20 Wisdom shouts in the street, She lifts her voice in the square; 21 At the head of the noisy streets she cries out; At the entrance of the gates in the city she utters her sayings: 22 “How long, O naïve ones, will you love being simple-minded? And scoffers delight themselves in scoffing And fools hate knowledge? 23  “Turn to my reproof, Behold, I will pour out my spirit on you; I will make my words known to you. 24 “Because I called and you refused, I stretched out my hand and no one paid attention; 25 And you neglected all my counsel And did not want my reproof; 26 I will also laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your dread comes, 27 When your dread comes like a storm And your calamity comes like a whirlwind, When distress and anguish come upon you. 28 “Then they will call on me, but I will not answer; They will seek me diligently but they will not find me, 29 Because they hated knowledge And did not choose the fear of the LORD. 30 “They would not accept my counsel, They spurned all my reproof. 31 “So they shall eat of the fruit of their own way And be satiated with their own devices. 32 “For the waywardness of the naïve will kill them, And the complacency of fools will destroy them. 33 “But he who listens to me shall live securely And will be at ease from the dread of evil.”

Matthew Henry (P1-V5) Commentary
IV. What good use may be made of them, v. 5, 6. Those who are young and simple may by them be made wise, and are not excluded from Solomon’s school, as they were from Plato’s. But is it only for such? No; here is not only milk for babes, but strong meat for strong men. This book will not only make the foolish and bad wise and good, but the wise and good wiser and better; and though the simple and the young man may perhaps slight those instructions, and not be the better for them, yet the wise man will hear. Wisdom will be justified by her own children, though not by the children sitting in the market-place. Note, Even wise men must hear, and not think themselves too wise to learn. A wise man is sensible of his own defects (Plurima ignoro, sed ignorantiam meam non ignoroI am ignorant of many things, but not of my own ignorance), and therefore is still pressing forward, that he may increase in learning, may know more and know it better, more clearly and distinctly, and may know better how to make use of it. As long as we live we should strive to increase in all useful learning. It was a saying of one of the greatest of the rabbim, Qui non auget scientiam, amittit de ea-If our stock of knowledge by not increasing, it is wasting; and those that would increase in learning must study the scriptures; these perfect the man of God. A wise man, by increasing in learning, is not only profitable to himself, but to others also,

  • 1. As a counsellor. A man of understanding in these precepts of wisdom, by comparing them with one another and with his own observations, shall by degrees attain unto wise counsels; he stands fair for preferment, and will be consulted as an oracle, and entrusted with the management of public affairs; he shall come to sit at the helm, so the word signifies. Note, Industry is the way to honour; and those whom God has blessed with wisdom must study to do good with it, according as their sphere is. It is more dignity indeed to be counsellor to the prince, but it is more charity to be counsellor to the poor, as Job was with his wisdom. Job 29:15I was eyes to the blind.

OUTLINE

  • Why learn?
    • it teaches humility
    • it teaches discernment
      • it makes wise the innocent
      • it judges the arrogant
        • it preserves life

Every word of God is tested

The Words of Agur

Proverbs 30; I die daily devotional.

The words of Agur the son of Jakeh, the oracle. The man declares to Ithiel, to Ithiel and Ucal: Surely I am more stupid than any man, And I do not have the understanding of a man. 3 Neither have I learned wisdom, Nor do I have the knowledge of the Holy One. 4 Who has ascended into heaven and descended? Who has gathered the wind in His fists? Who has wrapped the waters in His garment? Who has established all the ends of the earth? What is His name or His son’s name? Surely you know! 5 Every word of God is tested; He is a shield to those who take refuge in Him. 6 Do not add to His words Or He will reprove you, and you will be proved a liar.

The Word of God is established in Jesus Christ—I AM THAT I AM.

EVERY WORD

What more am I [Nathan] to say other than to encourage and direct the souls of my readers to the Word of God. After reading the commentary to these six verses am found to be in a state of pause …

There are powerful elements of data that emerge to inspire my full attention on God [our Father] because my soul contends with God around whether my heart means to compete with the Word of God …

… “does it?” … (I think to myself).

To experience this contention is very scary (like a child’s fear of parental discipline), which I think to be a very healthy response to the evidence of God [my Father] in me. I’m in a state of full disclosure, ready with authenticity, and a soul completely transparent as an adult son contends with their adult father.

To all my brothers and sisters in Christ…

  • Are seeking to advance yourself in competition with the Word of God?
  • Have you contended with God as your Father?
  • Are you listening to truth?
  • What is your reaction?

RESOURCES

Proverbs 30 (NASB)—blueletterbible.org
The words of Agur the son of Jakeh, the oracle. The man declares to Ithiel, to Ithiel and Ucal: Surely I am more stupid than any man, And I do not have the understanding of a man. 3 Neither have I learned wisdom, Nor do I have the knowledge of the Holy One. 4 Who has ascended into heaven and descended? Who has gathered the wind in His fists? Who has wrapped the waters in His garment? Who has established all the ends of the earth? What is His name or His son’s name? Surely you know! 5 Every word of God is tested; He is a shield to those who take refuge in Him. 6 Do not add to His words Or He will reprove you, and you will be proved a liar. 7 Two things I asked of You, Do not refuse me before I die: 8 Keep deception and lies far from me, Give me neither poverty nor riches; Feed me with the food that is my portion, 9 That I not be full and deny You and say, “Who is the LORD?” Or that I not be in want and steal, And profane the name of my God. 10 Do not slander a slave to his master, Or he will curse you and you will be found guilty. 11 There is a kind of man who curses his father And does not bless his mother. 12 There is a kind who is pure in his own eyes, Yet is not washed from his filthiness. 13 There is a kind—oh how lofty are his eyes! And his eyelids are raised in arrogance. 14 There is a kind of man whose teeth are like swords And his jaw teeth like knives, To devour the afflicted from the earth And the needy from among men. 15 The leech has two daughters, “Give,” “Give.” There are three things that will not be satisfied, Four that will not say, “Enough”: 16 Sheol, and the barren womb, Earth that is never satisfied with water, And fire that never says, “Enough.” 17 The eye that mocks a father And scorns a mother, The ravens of the valley will pick it out, And the young eagles will eat it. 18 There are three things which are too wonderful for me,Four which I do not understand: 19 The way of an eagle in the sky, The way of a serpent on a rock, The way of a ship in the middle of the sea, And the way of a man with a maid. 20 This is the way of an adulterous woman: She eats and wipes her mouth, And says, “I have done no wrong.” 21 Under three things the earth quakes, And under four, it cannot bear up: 22 Under a slave when he becomes king, And a fool when he is satisfied with food, 23 Under an unloved woman when she gets a husband, And a maidservant when she supplants her mistress. 24 Four things are small on the earth, But they are exceedingly wise: 25 The ants are not a strong people, But they prepare their food in the summer; 26 The shephanim are not mighty people, Yet they make their houses in the rocks; 27 The locusts have no king, Yet all of them go out in ranks; 28 The lizard you may grasp with the hands, Yet it is in kings’ palaces. 29 There are three things which are stately in their march, Even four which are stately when they walk: 30 The lion which is mighty among beasts And does not retreat before any, 31 The strutting rooster, the male goat also, And a king when his army is with him. 32 If you have been foolish in exalting yourself Or if you have plotted evil, put your hand on your mouth. 33 For the churning of milk produces butter, And pressing the nose brings forth blood; So the churning of anger produces strife.

Proverbs 30:1-6 (Matthew Henry)
Some make Agur to be not the name of this author, but his character; he was a collector (so it signifies), a gatherer, one that did not compose things himself, but collected the wise sayings and observations of others, made abstracts of the writings of others, which some think is the reason why he says (v. 3), “I have not learned wisdom myself, but have been a scribe, or amanuensis, to other wise and learned men.’ Note, We must not bury our talent, though it be but one, but, as we have received the gift, so minister the same, if it be but to collect what others have written. But we rather suppose it to be his name, which, no doubt, was well known then, though not mentioned elsewhere in scripture. Ithiel and Ucal are mentioned, either,

  • 1. As the names of his pupils, whom he instructed, or who consulted him as an oracle, having a great opinion of his wisdom and goodness. Probably they wrote from him what he dictated, as Baruch wrote from the mouth of Jeremiah, and by their means it was preserved, as they were ready to attest it to be his, for it was spoken to them; they were two witnesses of it. Or,
  • 2. As the subject of his discourse. Ithiel signifies God with me, the application of Immanuel, God with us. The word calls him God with us; faith appropriates this, and calls him “God with me, who loved me, and gave himself for me, and into union and communion with whom I am admitted.’ Ucal signifies the Mighty One, for it is upon one that is mighty that help is laid for us. Many good interpreters therefore apply this to the Messiah, for to him all the prophecies bear witness, and why not this then? It is what Agur spoke concerning Ithiel, even concerning Ithiel (that is the name on which the stress is laid) and Ucal—the mighty God (Isa. 9:6with us, Isa. 7:14.

Three things the prophet here aims at:-

  • I. To abase himself. Before he makes confession of his faith he makes confession of his folly and the weakness and deficiency of reason, which make it so necessary that we be guided and governed by faith. Before he speaks concerning the Saviour he speaks of himself as needing a Saviour, and as nothing without him; we must go out of ourselves before we go into Jesus Christ.
    • 1. He speaks of himself as wanting a righteousness, and having done foolishly, very foolishly. When he reflects upon himself he owns, Surely I am more brutish than any man. Every man has become brutish, Jer. 10:14. But he that knows his own heart knows so much more evil of himself than he does of any other that he cries out, “Surely I cannot but think that I am more brutish than any man; surely no man has such a corrupt deceitful heart as I have. I have acted as one that has not the understanding of Adam, as one that is wretchedly degenerated from the knowledge and righteousness in which man was at first created; nay, I have not the common sense and reason of a man, else I should not have done as I have done.’ Agur, when he was applied to by others as wiser than most, acknowledged himself more foolish than any. Whatever high opinion others may have of us, it becomes us to have low thoughts of ourselves.
    • 2. He speaks of himself as wanting a revelation to guide him in the ways of truth and wisdom. He owns (v. 3“I neither learned wisdom by any power of my own (the depths of it cannot be fathomed by my line and plummet) nor know I the knowledge of the holy ones, the angels, our first parents in innocency, nor of the holy things of God; I can get no insight into them, nor make any judgment of them, further than God is pleased to make them known to me.’ The natural man, the natural powers, perceive not, nay, they receive not, the things of the Spirit of God. Some suppose Agur to be asked, as Apollo’s oracle was of old, Who was the wisest man? The answer is, He that is sensible of his own ignorance, especially in divine things. Hoc tantum scio, me nihil scireAll that I know is that I know nothing.
  • II. To advance Jesus Christ, and the Father in him (v. 4): Who ascended up into heaven, etc.
    • 1. Some understand this of God and of his works, which are both incomparable and unsearchable. He challenges all mankind to give an account of the heavens above, of the winds, the waters, the earth: “Who can pretend to have ascended up to heaven, to take a view of the orbs above, and then to have descended, to give us a description of them? Who can pretend to have had the command of the winds, to have grasped them in his hand and managed them, as God does, or to have bound the waves of the sea with a swaddling band, as God has done? Who has established the ends of the earth, or can describe the strength of its foundations or the extent of its limits? Tell me what is the man’s name who can undertake to vie with God or to be of his cabinet-council, or, if he be dead, what is his name to whom he has bequeathed this great secret.’
    • 2. Others refer it to Christ, to Ithiel and Ucal, the Son of God, for it is the Son’s name, as well as the Father’s, that is here enquired after, and a challenge given to any to vie with him. We must now exalt Christ as one revealed; they then magnified him as one concealed, as one they had heard something of but had very dark and defective ideas of. We have heard the fame of him with our ears, but cannot describe him (Job 28:22); certainly it is God that has gathered the wind in his fists and bound the waters as in a garment; but what is his name? It is, I am that I am (Ex. 3:14), a name to be adored, not to be understood. What is his Son’s name, by whom he does all these things? The Old-Testament saints expected the Messiah to be the Son of the Blessed, and he is here spoken of as a person distinct from the Father, but his name as yet secret. Note, The great Redeemer, in the glories of his providence and grace, can neither be paralleled nor found out to perfection.
      • (1.) The glories of the kingdom of his grace are unsearchable and unparalleled; for who besides has ascended into heaven and descended? Who besides is perfectly acquainted with both worlds, and has himself a free correspondence with both, and is therefore fit to settle a correspondence between them, as Mediator, as Jacob’s ladder? He was in heaven in the Father’s bosom (Jn. 1:118); thence he descended to take our nature upon him; and never was there such condescension. In that nature he again ascended (Eph. 4:9), to receive the promised glories of his exalted state; and who besides has done this? Rom. 10:6.
      • (2.) The glories of the kingdom of his providence are likewise unsearchable and unparalleled. The same that reconciles heaven and earth was the Creator of both and governs and disposes of all. His government of the three lower elements of air, water, and earth, is here particularized.
        • [1.] The motions of the air are of his directing. Satan pretends to be the prince of the power of the air, but even there Christ has all power; he rebuked the winds and they obeyed him.
        • [2.] The bounds of the water are of his appointing: He binds the waters as in a garment; hitherto they shall come, and no further, Job 38:9-11.
        • [3.] The foundations of the earth are of his establishing. He founded it at first; he upholds it still. If Christ had not interposed, the foundations of the earth would have sunk under the load of the curse upon the ground, for man’s sin. Who and what is the mighty He that does all this? We cannot find out God, nor the Son of God, unto perfection. Oh the depth of that knowledge!
  • III. To assure us of the truth of the word of God, and to recommend it to us, v. 5, 6. Agur’s pupils expect to be instructed by him in the things of God. “Alas!’ says he, “I cannot undertake to instruct you; go to the word of God; see what he has there revealed of himself, and of his mind and will; you need know no more than what that will teach you, and that you may rely upon as sure and sufficient. Every word of God is pure; there is not the least mixture of falsehood and corruption in it.’ The words of men are to be heard and read with jealousy and with allowance, but there is not the least ground to suspect any deficiency in the word of God; it is as silver purified seven times (Ps. 12:6), without the least dross or alloy. Thy word is very pure, Ps. 119:140.
    • 1. It is sure, and therefore we must trust to it and venture our souls upon it. God in his word, God in his promise, is a shield, a sure protection, to all those that put themselves under his protection and put their trust in him. The word of God, applied by faith, will make us easy in the midst of the greatest dangers, Ps. 46:1, 2.
    • 2. It is sufficient, and therefore we must not add to it (v. 6): Add thou not unto his words, because they are pure and perfect. This forbids the advancing of any thing, not only in contradiction to the word of God, but in competition with it; though it be under the plausible pretence of explaining it, yet, if it pretend to be of equal authority with it, it is adding to his words, which is not only a reproach to them as insufficient, but opens a door to all manner of errors and corruptions; for, that one absurdity being granted, that the word of any man, or company of men, is to be received with the same faith and veneration as the word of God, a thousand follow. We must be content with what God has thought fit to make known to us of his mind, and not covet to be wise above what is written; for,
      • (1.) God will resent it as a heinous affront: “He will reprove thee, will reckon with thee as a traitor against his crown and dignity, and lay thee under the heavy doom of those that add to his words, or diminish from them,’ Deu. 4:212:32.
      • (2.) We shall run ourselves into endless mistakes: “Thou wilt be found a liar, a corrupter of the word of truth, a broacher of heresies, and guilty of the worst of forgeries, counterfeiting the broad seal of heaven, and pretending a divine mission and inspiration, when it is all a cheat. Men may be thus deceived, but God is not mocked.’

Iron sharpens iron

Warnings and Instructions

Proverbs 27; I die daily devotional.

17 Iron sharpens iron, So one man sharpens another. 18 He who tends the fig tree will eat its fruit, And he who cares for his master will be honored. 19 As in water face reflects face, So the heart of man reflects man.

I think it has nearly been more than a few years since I was a maintenance engineer of a German company by the name of Gaedeke at a 14-story class double AA office building close to Frisco Tx before leaving to help a friend startup a moving company that will hopefully succeed to achieve the million dollar status projection and then go beyond, but I won’t forget the iron tools used to give keys their identity for a possessor. I was the… “keymaster”! Well it felt that way after watching “The Matrix Reloaded” representing the cause of Neo to save Zion! That was my ambition, to save people from corporations that suck the life blood out of capitalism, but I’d missed the mark by a long shot considering I was engineer to help maintain its present course. That’s time past, my trajectory has changed, or … it’s simply dissolving … expanding rather, in the heat as the iron that represents my soul is forged into a sword that belongs to Christ my Lord.

IRON SHARPENS IRON

Hammering keys into their identity wasn’t all I did, but believe it or not, it was what I enjoyed the most as an engineer. It was during that time that I was inspired to organize what I called… “Salvational Engineering”.

I would pick up trash around my neighborhood with a neon orange or green long sleeve shirt that had “Numbers 21:6-9” and “John 3:12-15” painted on them. And now as I write this devotional out, I especially enjoyed punching those keys into their identity because symbolically that is exactly what Christ is doing with those that believe in the testimony of His Name. As we believers come together to converse the kingdom of God on earth until Jesus come, the Word of God sharpens us into the tool of salvation. A key that proclaims the name of Jesus Christ and the gospel.

IT TAKES TIME

But see, the thing is, it takes what feels like an eternity to make a tool perfect for it purpose. “Why is that?” I think to myself. Well, from my experience it’s because I didn’t start out as a tool in the kingdom of God, but was born as tool of sin that is separated from God until… yes until I decided for myself that I would read the gospel without an indoctrinated view, but purely from a heart willing to believe, and as long as I’m separated from God the pain of death is no more than a tool forged to serve its purpose. Jesus holds the keys!

Rev 1:17 When I saw Him, I fell at His feet like a dead man. And He placed His right hand on me, saying, “Do not be afraid; I am the first and the last, 18 and the living One; and I was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore, and I have the keys of death and of Hades. 19 Therefore write the things which you have seen, and the things which are, and the things which will take place after these things.

We are now alive to a purpose like that of salvational engineers, ever being trained as blacksmiths to sharpen each other into the Word of God by the name of Jesus Christ. Use us Lord, please. In your name, Jesus. Amen.

  • How do you need to be sharpened?
  • Who are you sharpening?
  • Are you willing to believe?
  • Are you a key of separation or reconciliation?

Resources

Proverbs 27(NASB)—blueletterbible
1 Do not boast about tomorrow, For you do not know what a day may bring forth. 2 Let another praise you, and not your own mouth; A stranger, and not your own lips. 3 A stone is heavy and the sand weighty, But the provocation of a fool is heavier than both of them. 4 Wrath is fierce and anger is a flood, But who can stand before jealousy? Better is open rebuke Than love that is concealed. 6 Faithful are the wounds of a friend, But deceitful are the kisses of an enemy. 7 A sated man loathes honey, But to a famished man any bitter thing is sweet. 8 Like a bird that wanders from her nest, So is a man who wanders from his home. 9 Oil and perfume make the heart glad, So a man’s counsel is sweet to his friend. 10 Do not forsake your own friend or your father’s friend, And do not go to your brother’s house in the day of your calamity; Better is a neighbor who is near than a brother far away. 11 Be wise, my son, and make my heart glad, That I may reply to him who reproaches me. 12 A prudent man sees evil and hides himself, The naïve proceed and pay the penalty. 13 Take his garment when he becomes surety for a stranger; And for an adulterous woman hold him in pledge. 14 He who blesses his friend with a loud voice early in the morning, It will be reckoned a curse to him. 15 A constant dripping on a day of steady rain And a contentious woman are alike; 16 He who would restrain her restrains the wind, And grasps oil with his right hand. 17 Iron sharpens iron, So one man sharpens another. 18 He who tends the fig tree will eat its fruit, And he who cares for his master will be honored. 19 As in water face reflects face, So the heart of man reflects man. 20 Sheol and Abaddon are never satisfied, Nor are the eyes of man ever satisfied. 21 The crucible is for silver and the furnace for gold, And each is tested by the praise accorded him. 22 Though you pound a fool in a mortar with a pestle along with crushed grain, Yet his foolishness will not depart from him. 23 Know well the condition of your flocks, And pay attention to your herds; 24 For riches are not forever, Nor does a crown endure to all generations. 25 When the grass disappears, the new growth is seen, And the herbs of the mountains are gathered in, 26 The lambs will be for your clothing, And the goats will bring the price of a field, 27 And there will be goats’ milk enough for your food, For the food of your household, And sustenance for your maidens.

He who separates himself seeks his own desire

Proverbs chapter 18 on the 18th; I die daily devotionals.

1 He who separates himself seeks his own desire,
He quarrels against all sound wisdom.

Good-morning, Readers. I love you people, and I mean it. That first verse of our chapter today describes Ander from our post yesterday—evil in the flesh. However, just as Ander was capable of such evil how much more are we capable of good; I pray for Ander. I pray that even though the man is in a cell and will experience justice; that he will not live in that jail the devil calls… home.

2 A fool does not delight in understanding,
But only in revealing his own mind.
3 When a wicked man comes, contempt
also comes, And with dishonor comes scorn.
4 The words of a man’s mouth are deep waters;
The fountain of wisdom is a bubbling brook.
5 To show partiality to the wicked is not good,
Nor to thrust aside the righteous in judgment.

Is jail my home?

These proverbs are teaching me that every soul is in a jail cell, yours and mine, but the significance of my learning is how our personal beliefs and faith expresses the nature of that cell. Is jail my home, or is it freedom? Will freedom be my home, or will jail? Wisdom would have me know—and I think you as well—that my belief and faith—in light of the book of prophecy—convicts me of present sin all the while providing my release to those “cuffs” if-you-will, its grasp to hold me in that state of which is presently convicting me.

6 A fool’s lips bring strife,
And his mouth calls for blows.
7 A fool’s mouth is his ruin,
And his lips are the snare of his soul.
8 The words of a whisperer are like dainty
morsels, And they go down into the 
innermost parts of the body.
9 He also who is slack in his work
Is brother to him who destroys.
10 The name of the LORD is a strong tower;
The righteous runs into it and is safe.

So because I have the capacity for all sorts of evil, and good, my present condition contains the essence of law. The essence of law is alive in me to define the nature of my being, and with it the identity of my spirit and where I belong. So right now my conscience is stable in that my focus is writing out this devotional, but as soon as I take my focus off writing and think about the state of my surrounding—my room, where my “office” is—I can see responsibilities I’ve neglected, such as taking out the trash and vacuuming the carpet. At which point the nature of my conscience shifts to that essence of law that inspires me to respond or not respond, to which then consequences soon reveal the state of my room in reflection to the condition of my soul.

11 A rich man’s wealth is his strong city,
And like a high wall in his own imagination.
12 Before destruction the heart of man
is haughty, But humility goes before honor.
13 He who gives an answer before he hears,
It is folly and shame to him.
14 The spirit of a man can endure his sickness,
But as for a broken spirit who can bear it?
15 The mind of the prudent acquires knowledge,
And the ear of the wise seeks knowledge.

You be the judge

You being the judge—in light of the information I’ve given—would my soul be healthy or unhealthy; if I just left my room in the condition it’s in? It might not be severe at this time, but as days become years of neglecting my responsibilities will then result to a person who’s made their home into a jail—the devil’s home. And not just for me, mind you, but my wife also.

16 A man’s gift makes room for him
And brings him before great men.
17 The first to plead his case seems right,
Until another comes and examines him.
18 The cast lot puts an end to strife
And decides between the mighty ones.
19 A brother offended is harder to be won 
than a strong city, And contentions are
like the bars of a citadel.
20 With the fruit of a man’s mouth his
stomach will be satisfied; He will be
satisfied with the product of his lips.

essence of law

Today’s I die daily devotional is a life changing one for me as I think about what all this means, and I pray you’ll see the results of the Spirit of God at work in me… a fellow believer and brother of the faith. My questions to you, my reader, are…

21 Death and life are in the power of the tongue,
And those who love it will eat its fruit.
22 He who finds a wife finds a good thing
And obtains favor from the LORD.
23 The poor man utters supplications,
But the rich man answers roughly.
24 A man of too many friends comes to ruin,
But there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.

  • What is the essence of law telling you about your soul?
  • How should you respond in light of the Word of God?
  • When will you respond?
  • Who might you be affecting?

Recourses

Uhhh,,, well, none today.

What Is The Chosen

And they prayed and said, “You, Lord, who know the hearts of all men, show which one of these two You have chosen to occupy this ministry and apostleship from which Judas turned aside to go to his own place.”

Acts 1:24-26


The chosen are the apostles of Jesus the Nazarene. Jesus called these 12 chosen to follow Him personally during His ministry of the kingdom of His Father our God to His excruciating death on the cross. Notice that these people responded by accepting their call to follow and went, not that they chose Jesus, but are chosen by Jesus. However, one of these apostles who also went and shared in Jesus’ ministry as (our verse above describes) took his portion of that ministry and went to his own place. But what place was that? A place called Hakeldama, that is, Field of Blood (Act 1:19). Earlier in the chapter of Acts, the chosen apostles tell about 120 followers of Jesus that Judas was a personification of scripture fulfilled—“For it is written in the book of Psalms, ‘LET HIS HOMESTEAD BE MADE DESOLATE, AND LET NO ONE DWELL IN IT’; and, ‘LET ANOTHER MAN TAKE HIS OFFICE.’ (Act 1, Psa 69, 109, Zec 5). So it was time to fill that office and the qualifications were men that accompanied Christ from His baptism to Him being taken up to the right hand of God after His resurrection from the dead (Acts 1:21-22, 2:32-33).

The chosen is a land and a people of Israel for the Kingdom of God that was taken from the hardened hearts of the chief priests and Pharisees in their office of the old covenant (Genesis 18:18-20, Matt 21:33-46, Roman 11). And that Kingdom was given to the apostles that share in our present ministry of the new covenant through the blood of Jesus Christ (Luke 22:20). The Kingdom of God today is a ministry of reconciliation (2 Cor 5:17-21) through the power and glory of God with the promise of the Holy Spirit. And it might be that you are wondering whether you are reconciled to God? If so, don’t worry, because every single one of the apostles wondered whether they were the one to betray Jesus saying, “Surely it is not I…?(John 13:21-25, Mark 14:18-21 Matt 26:21-25, Luke 22:14-23). There was a time when I asked that question for myself, only a little differently. Let’s look at what sets the 11 Christians apart from Judas and the reason the lot fell to Matthais to fill his office .

It looks plausible that Judas was stealing enough money throughout his life including the course of their ministry to acquire a field before his betrayal (Acts 1:18). He had thrown the 30 pieces of silver back to the chief priests (Matt 26:15, 27:3-9, Zech 11:12-13), which indicates to me that he’d already acquired the field by his wickedness. The betrayal of Judas reminds me of the rogue angel (Eze 28:12-17) guised in the eyes of a woman to be a serpent trusted by what God said to be very good (Gen 1:31), but was actually an act of betrayal. Now the serpent was more crafty than any beast of the field that the Lord God had made(Gen 3:1). The consequential program of the fruit from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil is genius, because in it is the capacity for what is created to be good capable of evil (Gen 2:9, Isa 5:20, 41:23, Eze 28:12-17 ). We are not forced to be evil, all of creation is given life to share with God our Father in the program He wrote with the blood ink of His only Son, The Word of God (Rev 12:13, John 3:16, Acts 4:12).

The Lord knows the hearts of all men. If you are honest about your heart, what would the Lord know about it? We are all thieves on the cross, but are you the thief saying… “Do you not even fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? And we indeed are suffering justly, for we are receiving what we deserve for our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong. Jesus, remember me when You come in Your kingdom!” (Luke 23:39-43)?

Knowledge of Good and Evil

Knowledge of Good and Evil


I pray this article will find you well and bless you with truth and spiritual development. I believe it is crucial for me to understand the knowledge of good and evil. I hope you will find value from sharing the experience of my inquiry.

What is knowledge?

Knowledge is information. If I take away all information but the fact that I exist, where does my knowledge come from? How do I understand anything? Take away the “search bar” and ask me what I know. Knowledge is circumstantial. I could tell you what my perception of knowledge is, but it’s the knowledge of Nathan.

How about you? Apart from the education you’ve received and environmental influence or governance. Would you be able to explain how and who you are? What does knowledge mean for you? What is the knowledge of you? 

It is interesting, at least for me, when I consider that I know nothing apart from divine inspiration. It only makes sense that knowledge comes from the spirit of my being, my soul. Here is where it gets fascinating. The soul breathed into man by God was sustained by the garden of Eden which was/is a divine place of God. Something happened when Adam and Eve ate of the fruit from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. The tree was divine in that when we (humankind born of Adam and Eve) ate of the fruit became like God (knowing good and evil).

Before we ate that fruit were made in the image and likeness of God but did not know what God knew. We cultivated and governed as representatives of God, but were not God; eating of that fruit made man become like God without being THE God, if that makes sense. We were given divine inspiration to the knowledge of good and evil upon eating what God warned us not to eat because we would be condemned to death.

The curse of death is the mark we bear as a testimony of the truth to our sin and punishment for evil.

There are two deaths, but I won’t get into that now. The point is that we have divine knowledge of good and evil. The Bible teaches us about this knowledge and with the Holy Spirit enlightens us to salvation from death. And that is good news!

What is good?

Only God is good! That is how God, is God, because God is good. If my God were not good, but evil also, then there is no God, but only chaos. Truth is good. There is a reason death is a consequence to my present state. This is also why my God can be trusted, because His judgement is just. How I know is by Jesus Christ. If God were evil would not go to the extent of giving His only Son as a living sacrifice for the sin of the world, provided to and for all that will come to believe in Him to be saved and ultimately rewarded depending on the race you run in salvation. Good is what pleases God, and God is love.

What is Evil?

Evil is Satan. Seeking out the vulnerable for abuse. Distorting the truth. Thinking I am the God of my life. Believing that Jesus Christ did not come in the flesh. Evil is Judas Iscariot betraying the innocent blood of Jesus Christ. For the love of money is the root of all evil. Adultery at heart. Murder at heart. Lying. The sinister element that tempts the heart to corruption. The desire to take and consume life rather than to give of it. To steal rather than serve. To not clothe the naked. To not give food to the hungry and drink to the thirsty. To not visit those in prison.

To understand the tree of the knowledge of good and evil means to discern your spirit and the spirit of those that come to you. The only thing I care to find out about a person is whether they know the truth and believe in Jesus Christ.

Do you know the truth about our condition of sin and do you believe in the gospel of Jesus Christ?

In love,

Nathan Dooley

I Don’t Follow Jesus

I Don’t Follow Jesus


“What!? No.” I know what you’re thinking, but I’m not trolling you. And remember, even though I don’t follow Jesus … keep loving people like He did and treat them as you want to be treated. Don’t try and scroll down to see what my aim is here. Does it surprise you? I mean…

I think John L. Cooper said it best—

“More and more of our outspoken leaders or influencers who were once “faces” of the faith are falling away. And at the same time they are being very vocal and bold about it.” (link)

And it only makes sense according to the Christian Post—

“Back in the 1930s, only 5% of Americans did not identify with any religion. In 1990 that number had risen to 8%, a modest increase after more than half a century.

But these last years have brought a dramatic change. By 2008, the number of Americans not identifying with any religion had risen to 12%, and by 2012, it had risen to 20%, with the number among millennials around 30%.” (link)

So this should not come as a surprise to you if it does. Especially if you’ve read how dark my previous post was. I mean, come on. I’ve been in the pits of unquenchable fire and suffering. I guess now the question is whether I truly EVER followed after Jesus? Some might think that my believing was in vain and only wanted something to gain. That I NEVER truly believed.

I would disagree and counter you misunderstand the enlightenment of your own faith or have not been enlightened to the truth of the gospel altogether. Just because you read that I don’t follow after Jesus does not mean that I wasn’t enlightened by the truth of the gospel, see I still know the truth and that is what should make this statement alarming.

The real question is—

Can the person turned away from their faith in Christ re-enter the Christian faith?

Sense we are talking about me because I’m selfish. The answer to that question for me is “no” because in my case I’ve confessed to taste the heavenly gift that made me a partaker of the Holy Spirit. So it is impossible for me to be renewed again to repentance since I again crucify to myself the Son of God and put Him to open shame. Don’t believe me, check out Hebrews chapter 6 in your Bible.

It is the Holy Spirit through the inspired words of the Bible that speak with authority … I’m just a messenger.

That is what happened to Judas Iscariot. Judas held onto his thievery at heart, did not confess this sin. To do this leaves the “believer” (by association) in this case, Judas Iscariot, vulnerable to Satan’s influence (John 12:4-6) and ultimate possession. This is why it is so important for professing Christians to not sell their soul for the cost of their sin not confessed.


38 John said to Him, “Teacher, we saw someone casting out demons in Your name, and we tried to prevent him because he was not following us.” 39 But Jesus said, “Do not hinder him, for there is no one who will perform a miracle in My name, and be able soon afterward to speak evil of Me. 40 For he who is not against us is for us. 41 For whoever gives you a cup of water to drink because of your name as followers of Christ, truly I say to you, he will not lose his reward. (Mark 9)

49 John answered and said, “Master, we saw someone casting out demons in Your name; and we tried to prevent him because he does not follow along with us.” 50 But Jesus said to him, “Do not hinder him; for he who is not against you is ]for you.” (Luke 9)


I’ll confess that I used this title to especially peak the interest of those who thought they knew me to catch them like a fish. Because it’s the kind of friend I am, it’s what I do, that’s my humor and getting a rise out of my friends is quite fun, I admit. Not with the intention of destruction of course, then there would be an issue.

I wasn’t lying about not following Jesus, but I do follow after Jesus with all my heart, soul, strength, and mind. So brothers and sisters in the faith, don’t hinder me just because I’m not following after the style of gospel in you. Don’t hinder me just because you think there are enough christian resources out there for me to get plugged into one without having to startup a recourse of my own. Don’t hinder me…

In Love.

Nathan Dooley