Bible Studies, Proverbs

Proverbs 24:23-34

[23] These also are sayings of the wise.

Once again we see that the focus on wisdom, so that it can be passed on to you if you will receive instruction.

Partiality in judging is not good.[24] Whoever says to the wicked, “You are in the right,” will be cursed by peoples, abhorred by nations, [25] but those who rebuke the wicked will have delight, and a good blessing will come upon them.  [26] Whoever gives an honest answer kisses the lips.

We now see that partiality in judging is not good.  People may be prejudiced for or against a person because they are rich and famous, or of a certain race, but partiality of any kind is to be rejected.  You cannot say to someone that you know is doing wrong and say that you are in the right.  No matter if, they are your best friend, or brother or sister.  If you truly love someone then you will tell them the truth whether or not they want to hear it.

[27] Prepare your work outside; get everything ready for yourself in the field, and after that build your house.

This passage is saying do not make a big investment before you figure out how you are going to pay for it.  Think before you do things.  When you build a house, you are going to need money for supplies and food to eat while you work.  So prepare the fields now so that you do not run out while you are building your house.  In other words, think about what you are going to need beforehand before you make big decisions.

A practical example for you all since you will probably not be building farmhouses any time soon is marriage.  Are you preparing yourself to be the man or woman of God wants you to be, are setting standards on who you will or will not date, are you deciding what characteristics you would like in a spouse or are you just dating the first person that likes you back?  In other words, I know that you are bit young to be thinking about marriage, but you are never too young to be thinking about who you are going to be and what kind of person you want to spend the rest of your life with.  What this passage is saying is do not jump into a commitment without preparing.  And one day you will find yourself in a relationship with someone and if you had not prepared yourself for marriage then your marriage will be on a soft foundation.

[28] Be not a witness against your neighbor without cause, and do not deceive with your lips.  [29] Do not say, “I will do to him as he has done to me; I will pay the man back for what he has done.”

Be honest.  Even if you think that, your neighbor is capable of doing something that they are being accused of or maybe they are just bad neighbors, do not be dishonest, hold tightly to your integrity.  Do not be always seeking revenge for everything that someone has done wrong to you.  Especially Christians, think about all the wrong that you have done against God, but instead of seeking revenge He sent His only Son to die for you so that you could be forgiven.

[30] I passed by the field of a sluggard, by the vineyard of a man lacking sense, [31] and behold, it was all overgrown with thorns; the ground was covered with nettles, and its stone wall was broken down. [32] Then I saw and considered it; I looked and received instruction. [33] A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest, [34] and poverty will come upon you like a robber, and want like an armed man.

Here we are instructed not to be lazy.  We see that the sluggards vineyard did not fall apart overnight.  That it was a little sleep when he was supposed to be weeding, a little slumber when he was supposed to be tilling up the land, a little folding of hands to rest when he was supposed to be repairing the wall to keep the foxes out, that sent him into poverty.  In came upon him like an armed robber, he kept on saying tomorrow I will do it, until he got to the point where so much needed to be done that he could no longer even support himself.

A practical example for you all is homework.  Say you have this project that is due in a month.  If you are a sluggard then you will be tempted to fill your time with things that brings short term pleasures like TV, Facebook, playing video games, and then the night before its due you get a text from a friend asking about how yours is going.  Now it’s the night before and the project now looks impossible to get done.  You whip something together and bring it to school and you get a bad grade all because you waited until the last minute.

Now this text is encouraging you to be proactive.  If you do a little bit on that huge project everyday then it will be finished and done right before the deadline and you will be able to enjoy your time without being worried about your grade.

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