Sunday, June 8, 2014

My Son Proverb 27

My son  (March ’09)

       The last occurrence of (22) occurrences of ‘My son’ from the pen of Solomon echoes a familiar theme:
“My son, be wise, and make my heart glad, that I may answer him that reproaches me.”
(Proverb 27:11)

     This somewhat simple command from father to son “Be wise” doesn’t appear to hold a lot of instruction. However, if all of the other (21) “My son” occurrences were summarized, this single command from Solomon would cover them all.

     But, here Solomon gives two reasons for commanding his son with this repeated reminder:
1.      Make my heart glad
2.      That I may answer him that reproaches me

Not only will the wisdom of Solomon’s son bring him a joyful heart, but his son’s wisdom will give
Solomon the ability to reply with a positive illustration to anyone who desires to bring reproach upon the life of Solomon for he has raised a son who demonstrates wisdom in his overall lifestyle.

     Although this is the last ‘My son from Solomon, there is one more occurrence of ‘My son’ in the book of Proverbs that was not authored by Solomon:
“The words of king Lemuel [Solomon], the prophecy that his mother [Bathsheeba] taught him. What my son? And what, the son of my womb? And what, the son of my vows?(Proverb 31:1, 2) 

     In the next seven verses Bathsheeba gives Solomon some very good advice concerning his conduct now that he has become king after his father David’s death:
1.      Give not thy strength unto women nor thy ways to that which destroys kings
2.      It is not for kings to drink wine: nor for princes strong drink
3.      Open thy mouth for the dumb…Open thy mouth, judge righteously, and plead the cause of the poor and needy

The very first thing Bathsheeba warned Solomon about was not heeded, for Solomon allowed
himself to be greatly effected by the multitude of women that he brought into his life:
“But king Solomon loved many strange women, together with the daughter of Pharaoh, women of the Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Zidonians, and Hittites. Of the nations concerning which the LORD said unto the children of Israel, Ye shall not go in to them, neither shall they come into you: for surely they will turn away your heart after their gods: Solomon clave unto these in love. And he had seven hundred wives, princesses, and three hundred concubines: and his wives turned away his heart.” (I Kings 11:1-3)

     This chapter, I Kings 11, has forty-three verses recording the downfall of Solomon and the effect it had upon the whole nation of Israel. If he had listened to just this one command from his mother’s lips he would not have suffered the destructive consequences recorded in this lengthy chapter.

     Because he disobeyed this one command:
1.      His many wives turned away his heart (v.4)
2.      He went after the strange gods of his many wives (v.5, 6)
3.      He built high places and worshiped these strange gods (v.7, 8)

The LORD responded by:
1.      Taking the kingdom from Solomon (v.12, 13)
2.      Sending adversaries to Solomon (v.14-31)
3.      Afflicting the seed of David (v.39)

     Listening to what our parents tell us is vital to obeying the Lord for they stand in the place of the Lord as our authority and guide and instructor. Honoring father and mother is a command that never ends regardless of our age or position in life. If Solomon had honored his mother in this case it would have saved the kingdom from suffering great loss!

Chaplain LEWolfe  I-85 Exit 35 SC   McPilot    Stop in, and please pray for our ministry!

My Son Proverb 24

My son  (February ’09)

      The twentieth and twenty-first occurrence of ‘My son’ are found in Proverb 24. Solomon returns to a familiar theme with an enticing twist:
“My son, eat thou honey, because it is good; and the honey comb, which is sweet to thy taste: So shall knowledge of wisdom be unto thy soul: when thou has found it, then there shall be a reward, and thy expectation shall not be cut off.” (Proverb 24:13, 14)

     By appealing to the sense of taste Solomon compares the benefits of “the knowledge of wisdom” to the sweet satisfaction to the taste buds of honey and the honeycomb. The foundation for this comparison may have come from Solomon’s father David:
“Sweeter also than the honey and the honey comb, moreover by them thy servant is warned and in keeping of them there is great reward.” (Psalm 19:10)

     David is referring to the true and righteous judgments of God which is the only place to find  Solomon’s “ knowledge of wisdom”.  Notice, Solomon and David both speak of the reward of finding and rightly utilizing the wisdom of God.

     And just as honey to the taste-bud, so the knowledge and life application of the wisdom of God to the soul brings spiritual sweetness and satisfaction. Solomon adds another faith-based benefit when he states: “thy expectation shall not be cut off”. Expecting God to do what He said He would do will result in strengthened faith and great glory to God!

     The second occurrence of ‘My son’ underlines the key to a steady faithful walk with the Lord:
“My son, fear thou the Lord and the king: and meddle not with them that are given to change: For their calamity shall rise suddenly; and who knows the ruin of them both? (Proverb 24:21)

     Fearing the Lord will guarantee a right relationship between God and the believer. Solomon shows the parallel that the king, i.e. civil government has a God’s ordained representative. The fear of the Lord supplies the foundation for all true wisdom:
“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the holy is understanding.” 
(Proverb 9:10)

     Unless there is that faith-based reverential awe of God the Creator of all that exists, Who is also the Crucified Redeemer of mankind there can be no Biblical fear of God. He as our Creator owns us physically. Then, He purchased mankind from the slave-market of sin with His own Blood. It is for man to receive Him by faith:
“But as many as received Him to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name.” (John 1:12)

     Solomon gives his son the practical advice of staying away from those who do not have a consistent steady manner of life but instead flip-flop about changing with every wind of doctrine. He knows by experience that there is disaster in the making which will lead to the eventual ‘ruin of them both’.

     So, in essence, both of these personal “My son” instructions revolve on the fear of the Lord. The first proverb gives a physical illustration paralleling “the knowledge of wisdom” which can only be obtained by fearing the Lord according to Proverb 9:10.

     Then, Solomon bluntly commands his son to “fear thou the Lord” which is source for the wisdom of God which supplies all other spiritual and physical blessings to the believer for this right relationship with God will bring in the manifold and bountiful supply of all the necessary needs of life.
[For additional outline on “The fear of the Lord” see attachment]

Chaplain LEWolfe  I-85 Exit 35 SC   McPilot    Stop in, and please pray for our ministry!

My Son Proverb 23

My son  (January ’09)

     In Proverb 23 there are three occurrences of ‘my son’ that focus upon three ‘heart’ pleas from Solomon. These three personal and progressive ‘heart pleas’ rise in a crescendo until Solomon pours out his own heart pleading with his son to ‘give me thy heart’.

     The first plea appears somewhat low-key and introduces the last section (v.15-35) of Proverb 23:
“My son, if thine heart be wise, my heart shall rejoice, even mine. Yea my reins [heart] shall rejoice when thy lips speak right things. Let not thine heart envy sinners: but be thou in the fear of the Lord all the day long. For surely there is an end; and thine expectation shall not be cut off.” (Proverb 23:15-18)
      Solomon expresses one of the great joys of a father and that is to hear his son display his own wisdom by speaking right things in the course of life. Then he commands his son to reject envy/jealousy of sinners and provides a direct replacement for this negative response, the positive command to fear the Lord all the day long.

     Fearing the Lord involves the wisdom of viewing life from God’s perspective which will shed abundant light on the position of the sinner vs. the position of the saint.  God’s wisdom uncovers the temporal view vs. the eternal providing the believer with the truth necessary to get the victory!

     The eternal unchanging facts reveal that there is “an end [reward]; and thine expectation [hope] shall not be cut off.”  The son/saint who recognizes the eternal reward given by God for anything accomplished for Christ by the power of the Holy Spirit will yield to the voice of the Spirit and “fear the Lord all the day long” applying His wisdom in the process.

     Solomon begins to turn up the heat in the next section which includes a long list of direct commands:
Hear thou, my son, and be wise, and guide thine heart in the way. Be not among winebibbers [drunkards], among riotous eaters of flesh [gluttons]: For the drunkard and the glutton shall come to poverty; and drowsiness shall clothe a man with rags. Hearken unto thy father that begat thee, and despise not thy mother when she is old. Buy the truth, sell it not; also wisdom, and instruction, and understanding.” (Proverb 23:19-23)

     These verses deal with the reality of succumbing to the ‘envy of sinners’ and what exactly will occur if the son decides to go among those who partake in the wicked activities of open and excessive abuses of drinking and eating which were the prevalent sins of that day and in the day in which we live.

     Solomon’s final and most intensive heart plea is followed by his graphic view of the results you will experience by going a step deeper into the sinful ways of men:
I. Wrong Women (v.26-28) [Major Moral Trap: The Whoremonger’s Destiny] 
“My son, give me thine heart and let thine eyes observe my ways. For a whore is a deep ditch; and a strange woman is a narrow pit. She also lies in wait as for a prey, and increases the transgressors among men.”

II. Wrong Wine (v.29-32) [Mind-boggling Mess: The Drunkard’s Calamity]
“Who has woe? Who has sorrow? Who has contentions? Who has babbling? Who has wounds without cause? Who has redness of eyes? They that tarry long at the wine; they that go to seek mixed wine.
Look not thou upon the wine when it is red, when it gives his color in the cup, when it moves itself aright. At the last it bites like a serpent, and stings like an adder.” 

III. Wrong Ways (v.33-35) [Massive Mental Confusion: The Drunkard’s Stupor]
“Thine eyes shall behold strange women, and thine heart shall utter perverse things. Yea thou shall be as he that lies down in the midst of the sea, or as he that lies upon the top of a mast. They have stricken me, thou shall say, and I was not sick: they have beaten me, and I felt it not: when shall I awake? I will seek it [drink of wine] yet again.”

Chaplain LEWolfe  I-85 Exit 35 SC   McPilot    Stop in, and please pray for our ministry!