Proverbs 4:1-9 Wednesday, Day 23
King Solomon reminisces back to when His father taught him wisdom as a child. Solomon is passing that same wisdom to his son.
Moments in Proverbs
We have now entered into Proverbs, chapter four. We learned in the last verse of chapter 3 that the wise shall inherit glory, but shame shall be the promition of fools.
Listen to the Doctrines of Your Father
King Solomon was continuously trying to pour knowledge and understanding into his son so that he could become wise. Not only was his son being trained to become the next king of Israel, King Solomon was training his son in the ways of the Lord because Solomon, as the wisest man on earth, so desired his son to experience the same kind of God-wisdom as he had experienced. Assuming that this son was Rehoboam, who became the next king after Solomon of Israel, history verifies that both fell by the wayside and neither of them ended up walking in the wisdom of the Lord. One because of making bad choices, and the other for watching his father fall to the temptations that pulled him away from the Lord, as well as not having his father teach him long enough to get God's Word solidly planted down deep within him.
As we begin chapter 4, Solomon continues to pour his and the Lord's knowledge into his son. This time, however,
1. Hear, my children, the instruction of a father, And give attention to know understanding; 2. For I give you good doctrine: Do not forsake my law.
In this verse we see a change in King Solomon as he is addressing "his children." Three times throughout the Book of Proverbs, we see King Solomon addressing more than one child. Could he be teaching more than one son at this time, as he had many sons, or could he be addressing the sons of Israel, with him as their teacher and father in his instructions. For in his instructions came great wisdom, and King Solomon was known as the wisest man in the world at this time. It could be either. Checking all Bible commentaries, no one makes mention of it.
Assuming we are addressing more than one of King Solomon's children, he again is asking them that they listen to his instructions so they can gain understanding of what he is saying. Remember, first comes knowledge, then understanding. Only with attaining both of these can one gain wisdom - God's Wisdom.
Solomon is asking his sons to listen to his doctrine, which is a combination of the Law of Moses and the law he has set up for his family. And he says, it is good!
King Solomon Taught the
Words of His Father
3. When I was my father’s son, Tender and the only one in the sight of my mother, 4. He also taught me, and said to me: “Let your heart retain my words; Keep my commands, and live.
King Solomon was reminiscing back to when his father, King David, taught him as a young child. Again, probably in preparation to being the future king. Solomon was just a young lad when his mother Bathsheiba nurtured him as her only child, and his father, the king, taught him the law by saying to never forget what his father taught him - and if he never forgets, keeping his commands, he will live. These words of his father had to really impress Solomon because King David was not known in Scripture to spending a lot of time with his children.
5. Get wisdom! Get understanding! Do not forget, nor turn away from the words of my mouth. 6. Do not forsake her, and she will preserve you; Love her, and she will keep you.
What we discover here is King Solomon was taught the same thing by his father King David as he was teaching his son or sons. Get wisdom, and in order to do so, you have to gain the knowledge you need and then take that understanding to make wise choices in life. That will lead to the wisdom he needs - the God-kind of wisdom that will preserve him for all future times when he would need it. In fact, Solomon is teaching his sons here that they need to be at a place where they love and continuously seek after wisdom, meaning they will learn to continuously seek after the right kind of knowledge that will bring on the proper understanding and gain the needed wisdom to make these wise kinds of decisions in life. As such, Solomon was training his sons to be lifetime learners in attaining God's knowledge throughout their life to continuously walk in wisdom.
The End Goal - Wisdom
7. Wisdom is the principal thing; Therefore get wisdom. And in all your getting, get understanding.
The end goal is wisdom. In all getting, as Solomon says here, get understanding. And in order to get understanding, we have to gain the knowledge first to get that understanding. The goal - get wisdom - that is the principal thing that we seek to attain - again, God's wisdom.
8. Exalt her, and she will promote you; She will bring you honor, when you embrace her.
Pursue wisdom, place her above other things - for when you do, wisdom will bring you to places you could not attain on your own. God's wisdom is God working through you in areas where you have purposely learned about to understand it. Then God can work in and through you to think God's way, and do things the way God would want them done. As such, you will be recognized with honor and respect because you did things God's ways. So hunger and thirst to obtain God's knowledge and understanding to get His wisdom.
9. She will place on your head an ornament of grace; A crown of glory she will deliver to you.”
People often regard money or fame as the principal thing in life. Instead, God, is asking His people to give a much higher place to His wisdom. Money or fame come and goes, and will soon fade away; but God's wisdom will carry you through life as long as you keep seeking it and applying it to your life. Wisdom will bring you to places where you will have respect and honor among your piers around you. Wisdom can then be worn as a crown upon your head.
Wisdom is something you will never regret obtaining. She will come to your rescue many times over as you keep applying wisdom to your daily life.
Pastor Joyce Erickson