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Proverbs 4

In Pursuit of Wisdom

Proverbs Podcasts 2020, #6

Warren E. Berkley

 

Welcome to these podcasts I’ll be posting at least once a week, and the subject will be – the Old Testament book of Proverbs. This is #6, based on Prov. 4. I would like to call to your attention – these observations from inside of Proverbs chapter 4. I’ll encourage you to read the chapter after listening.

 

  1. There is a subtle shift here, that we may not notice at first. Earlier in Proverbs, the writer uses the father-son model. We’ve talked about the parental pulpit. A father is having a crucial conversation with his son – about temptation, wisdom, discipline, issuing prohibitions, etc. Then we come to chapter four and verse 1, and there is a shift – almost unnoticeable. Back in one, two and three – the father addresses his son, singular. Now here in Prov. 4:1 – “Hear, O sons, a father’s instruction.” That may not seem too significant. But I’ll make this point – Parents need to provide wise counsel to each of their children. Sometimes this needs to be done one-on-one. Other times, speaking to the group. Equal instruction and the same instruction, imparted by parents to all their children – about the fear of the Lord, seeking wisdom, and the necessarily discipline that should be taken into every day.

 

  1. In verses 18 & 19, “…the path of the righteous is like the light of dawn, which shines brighter and brighter until full day. The way of the wicked is like deep darkness; they do not know over what they stumble.” This is consistent with Scripture as a whole. Living right with God is often portrayed as light. Living without God, darkness. And in the New Testament, in many places – faithful Christians radiate light, show the way, lead people out of darkness. By our influence, Jesus said, “let your light shine before men,” and Paul said we are to shine as lights in the world.

 

  1. Keep your eyes forward. Verse 25, “Let your eyes look directly forward, and your gaze be straight before you.” I cannot read this without remembering what Jesus said, in Luke 9:62 – “No one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God.” Once we embrace wisdom and start making choices to be followers of Christ – there is a DON’T LOOK BACK ATTITUDE WE HAVE TO MAINTAIN. Does anyone remember Lot’s wife?

 

  1. An associated thought – in verse 27 – “Do not swerve to the right or to the left.” I think this goes to the matter so prominent in Proverbs, of temptation. Once we make the choice to take the right path, and we get on that path – drive a straight course! If we start looking around, we can get distracted and drive off the straight course --- into trouble. So the end of chapter four says, “turn your foot away from evil.”

 

One commentator said about Proverbs chapter 4 à the message is – GET GOING, KEEP GOING AND DON’T GET LOST!

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