Focus Verse: Prov 4:7 Lesson Verse:
A. The Book of Proverbs in the Old Testament is God's foundation for thinking - it is the basis of a Christians "philosophy." Any philosophy that does not match this Book is anti-God, and is to be taken with a pinch of salt. It is the solid rock of truth about the human heart, and the issues we face because of it (Prov 4:23).
B. Proverbs is such an important Book that it ought to be read by everyone, one chapter a day through a month, every month for a while until it sinks in deep! Great to read at the end of the day (Psalms should be read at the start of the day).
C. By way of introduction to Chapter Two, we now begin to notice how God's blessings are related to our attitudes. God cannot, and will not bless and help a person who is obstinately going their own way. Jesus will come and even die for them, but will not force them to heaven if they wish to reject His way as being "too simplistic," or, "childish" etc. God's blessings are for those who want them - just as anything in life, they have to be desired, and are obtained by faith (that's what Hebrews 11 was all about).
A. Solomon begins by talking as a father to his son Rehoboam (2:1)
1. Part of the responsibility a parent towards their children (Dt 6:4-9)
a. Training the next generation (Ps 71:18)
b. Warning, instructing, equipping (Col 1:28)
2. God would like to have us come to Him as His children
a. God would like us to listen like a child would their parent (except in this age)
b. God does not want to "Boss" us around, but "nurture" and train is in the way we should go - we need clear direction, and God's word is where we get it!
c. We all to often forget God's word is directed right at us like this (Cf Heb 12:5,6)
B. God's Requirements for Clarity of Mind (Pr 2:1-9; 2Tim 1:7)
1. Right attitudes - Attitudes are far more important than actions! If you have the following attitudes, God will bless you!
a. Accept God's words - as truth - as the final authority. Meekly receiving God's word (Jam 1:22; Act 17:11)
b. Treasure God's word - protect it, and hide it away (Ps 19:105)
c. Hunger and seek for the wisdom and understanding that they hold
1) Not just the knowledge of facts and events and neat stuff
2) But the reasons and spirit of the law - intent
d. Cry after wisdom and understanding - pray for earnestly - seeking it like you would a living, or a career, or a mate (Jer 29:13)
e. This all shows that God does not intend on spoon-feeding anyone, and that you are going to have to seek it with more intent that the world allows!
f. This also shows that what God wants is our heart to be right, because when our heart is right, our actions will follow!
2. Right Thoughts. It's only then that two things will happen - You will:
a. Understand the value of fearing God, and knowing God because:
1) Only God can give wisdom, knowledge and understanding
2) Only God has stored away truth and wisdom for the seeker
3) God protects the seeker on his/her way to finding truth
b. Understand (grasp) four of the greatest concepts of life:
1) Righteousness - what is right verses wrong
2) Judgement - how to correct wrong
3) Equity - the ability to be fair and impartial
4) And the Right Path - the right way to live
a) Narrow path (Mt 7:14)
b) Old path (Jer 6:16)
c) Safe path (Pr 3:21-23)
3. Principle: All this is "free" to the serious seeker (1 Kg 3:9,12; Jam 1:5), but you must be serious - separates modern "christianity" from true Christianity - they WANTED truth!
C. Wisdom protects You From Two Things (2:10-19)
1. Talking about the wisdom of the heart, not mind (Rom 10:9,10; 6:17)
2. Talking about the need to be able to have discretion, sense to stay away from the evil man, and the strange woman
3. The Evil Man (2:10-15; Cf Lk 11:13)
a. Characteristics of the evil man
1) Crooked Liar - professional liar - liars without thinking
2) Forsakes the right path - there is always a right way to go, and live, and do things, but he on purpose deviates
3) Walks in darkness (Jn 8:12). Wouldn't have it any other way
4) Enjoys evil and more crookedness (TV, filthy romance books, gossip, hurting and ruining lives)
5) Yet, is indiscernible without revelation from the Bible - not easily apparent
b. Dangers associated with the evil man - corrupts
1) People easily are caught up in becoming just like them - it's natural
2) People will end up where evil men go - hell.
4. The Strange Woman (2:16-19)
a. She is "strange" in that she is not someone you would have been allowed to play with and get to know when you were a child
b. She is a flatterer
c. She forsakes guidance and parental instruction - rebel
d. Forgets her relationship with God, and her promises to God (Cf Jam 4:4)
1) Virginity - staying pure for the right man
2) Commitment to keeping her heart in love with Him
3) Commitment to loving and caring for her parents
4) Dwells near death, darkness, and hell
a) She is out to destroy people - and if she doesn't, God will (Heb 13:4)
b) There are no second chances once you have messed with her - can't ever regain virginity, purity of mind, freedom
5) More on this kind of a woman in chapters 5,6,7 and 9
5. The Evil Man is a description of the workings of the Antichrist. Anyone following the devil, shares his same fate (Mt 25:41)
6. The Strange Woman is a description of the workings of Babylon the Great Whore. Never underestimate the reach of your Bible, nor its intent on informing you of the world's goals and reality!
D. Remember that GOD is the winning side (2:20-22) - What He wants is to protect you, and enable you:
1. So that you can walk the way of Good Men - be different
2. So that you can keep, follow, and obey the path of righteousness - not an easy task. Jesus warned us (Mt 7:14).
Conclusion and Study Questions
A. What was the name of Solomon's son? ________________________
B. Which is more important to have: Right Attitudes, or Right Actions? (circle the right answer).
C. God's wisdom protects the seeker from what two kinds of people: 1) the _______________ man, and 2) the ____________ woman.