Proverbs 13 and 14
This Chapter repeats many instructions that have been given in the previous Chapter, to show us their importance and make them sink deeper into our hearts and minds.
These include the need to realise the value of wise and godly discipline and correction, vs 1,13,14,18,24. The humble will receive it willingly without offence and will be protected from deadly snares and unnecessary problems. Loving admonition and discipline (even with a rod) given to a child by parents, who have first taken the pains to overcome their own impatience and anger and train their children appropriately, will go a long way to keep them from evil habits and ungodly ways, vs 24.
Another important area that is given consistent importance is the area of our speech, vs 2,3. Jesus, Himself, warned us in Mathew 12:36 that we will have to give an account for every worthless, idle word that we speak. These include, words of complaint, self pity, lying, slander, gossip, unbelief, etc God told Jeremiah that he cud be God’s spokesman only is he extracted the precious from the worthless, Jeremiah 15:19.
Next, we are again reminded of the importance of being diligent and not sluggish like a sluggard, vs 3, 11, 25. Verses 5,6,9, 21,22,25 once again remind us about the blessings that will eventually come to the righteous and flow to their descendants as well. These include protection, prosperity, satisfaction and being a blessing to others. A humble person who judges oneself consistently will find favour and avoid unnecessary quarrels and problems, vs 10, 13,15,16,17,19,20.
To conclude, as we give attention to receiving godly discipline and instruction in humility, live righteously, be careful with our speech and use our time profitably, working diligently and not being lazy and sluggish, we will go a long way, by God’s grace, in fulfilling God’s calling for our lives n so become a blessing to many!
Let us who have ears, hear! Amen.
This Chapter begins by saying that it is a wise woman who builds her household, which means that she does so by walking in the fear of the Lord, for that is the beginning of wisdom, Proverbs 9:10, and her lifestyle is supported by the 7 pillars of wisdom, viz purity, peace, gentleness, easily entreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy.
On the other hand, a foolish woman can use her words to tear down her household, vs 3. A wise woman does not seek to keep the ‘stable’ empty but is willing to go through the pains of caring for the children God has given her, knowing that ‘strong children’ growing both in wisdom and stature, will eventually lead to an ‘abundant harvest’ vs 4. She speaks the truth in love, vs 5 and does not scoff when corrected, vs 6. On the other hand a foolish woman is unable to discern wise counsel vs 7, but delights in deception, vs 8 and takes sin lightly, vs 9. Such a household is bound to be destroyed, vs 11!
For there is a way that seems right to a man/woman, but if it is not backed by the Word of God, it will end in death, vs 12. She is not quick to share and spread the bitterness of her heart with others, but rather chooses to cleanse the same and walk in the fear of God, vs 10. Such a life brings satisfaction and will eventually be rewarded, vs 14! She does not believe everything that she is told, but like the Bereans, Acts 17:11, checks it out with the Word of God, to see if what people tell her is really true, vs 15,16,18. She learns to keep her temper in check and does not despise her neighbour, but is kind to the needy, vs 17,21.
She does not merely talk, but also works hard, thus showing that she believes that ‘faith without works’ is dead, 23, James 2:26. She does not envy her husband’s lot and by her tranquil spirit makes herself his ‘crown”‘, vs 30 and Proverbs 12:4. She refrains from oppressing the needy, be they her children or maids that are under her, vs 31. As a result, the wisdom of God rests within her heart and her household, will both, eventually, find favour with the Lord and be exalted too in due season, vs 33-35.
May God give us grace to lead such a life and build our homes to be ‘islands of peace’ and ‘houses of prayer’.