Bible Studies, Proverbs

Proverbs 31

Nobility and the Virtuous Wife


Today we will be concluding our series on the book of Proverbs and how we are to be searching for wisdom.  We see in the last Chapter of Proverbs how a woman who fears the lord is to be praised.  This is an important chapter for all of you because for the young ladies in here it gives you insight on what it looks like to be a Godly woman.  And for young men it gives insight on what you should be looking for in a girl that you want to date.

Proverbs 31:10: An excellent wife who can find?  She is far more precious than jewels.

Here we see how valuable an excellent wife is.  What is it about these precious stones that the author mentions that makes them so valuable?  It is their rarity.  You do not find diamonds in your back yard.  You have to search for them, and when you find one you cherish it because of all the hard work you put into finding one.  Likewise, so is an excellent wife.  You will not accidently stumble across an excellent wife, just like you will not stumble across are rare diamond.

Proverbs 31:11: The heart of her husband trusts in her, and he will have no lack of gain.

And this verse tells us why an excellent wife is so valuable.  And that is because you can trust her.  You do not have to worry about it she is cheating on you, you do not have to worry about if she still loves you, and because of this trust, you will be able to work together for gain instead of competing against each other.  A woman who fears the Lord will not squander the family’s livelihood on pointless purchases, but will have the complete trust of her husband because she is for him and not against him.  Wherever possible she supplements his earnings rather than wastes it.

Proverbs 31:16-17: She considers a field and buys it; with the fruit of her hands she plants a vineyard.  She dresses herself with strength and makes her arms strong.

A common misconception about Christianity is that it calls women to be passive and weak.  This comes from a misconception of what it means when God calls women to submit to their husbands.  We see here in this passage that the woman of God is strong and active in all decisions of her household.

Proverbs 31:20: She opens her hand to the poor and reaches out her hands to the needy.

Another mark of the woman who fears the Lord is she lives for the good of the needy.  God has drawn near and secured her future in his care.  Now she draws near to those who need most help.  This woman in Proverbs 31 is wealthy and esteemed, but she does not allow her social status to hinder her association with the poor.

Proverbs 31:21: She is not afraid of snow for her household, for all her household are clothed in scarlet.

Winter is a fearful thing in Kentucky, my wife and I  learned that the hard way when we got hit by an ice storm a couple of years ago when we lived in Louisville.  And God has appointed that we do more than pray that our feet not freeze.  Her careful preparation of necessary clothing in advance means that she is not afraid of sudden changes in weather, for they will not catch her unprepared.  Clothing must be made or bought.  When a woman fears the Lord, she will not be anxious about tomorrow, she will do what God has appointed for her to do and trust him in everything to show her mercy.

Proverbs 31:23: Her husband is known in the gates, when he sits among the elders of the land.

Verse 23 seems out of place in a song of praise to women.  How is this verse a word of praise to the wife who fears the Lord?  Proverbs 12:4 gives the answer: “A good wife is the crown of her husband, but she who brings shame is the rottenness of his bones.”  A wife who fears the Lord increases the esteem of her husband at the gates of the city.  Kaley and I will be married for four years on March 29th and we have known each other for 12 years and my wife has never done or said anything in public that would have caused me to be ashamed.  She has my absolute trust as a representative of what our family stands for.  There is no place I might go where I would be ashamed to take Kaley.  As Proverbs 12:4 says, She is a crown to my head.  She is for me 100% because she is a woman who fears the Lord.

Proverbs 31:25: Strength and dignity are her clothing, and she laughs at the time to come.

A woman who fears the Lord is not anxious about the future.  Satan dangles in front of her the danger of tomorrow’s troubles, but she glances up at the almighty God at her right hand and laughs at Satan’s folly.  She fulfills in her own life Proverbs 14:26, “In the fear of the Lord one has strong confidence, and his children will have a refuge.

Proverbs 31:26: She opens her mouth with wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.

In this verse, we see that the woman who fears the Lord has practical wisdom.  We studied earlier in this study of Proverbs, that “the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom” (Proverbs 9:10), so it is no surprise that the woman who fears the Lord “opens her mouth with wisdom.”  And there is a very close connection between a practical, gracious wisdom and freedom from anxiety about the future.

Proverbs 31:30: Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.

Charm can be deceitful because someone can charm you into doing something that you did not want to do.  Beauty is vain because despite our best efforts it is fleeting with age.  But more important than charm and beauty that our society places so highly is the character of the woman of God.  She can be recognized because she is confident and not anxious about the future, gracious wisdom is on her lips, she covers herself with strength, she brings her husband honor by her support, and she reaches out her hands to the needy.”  A woman who fears the Lord is to be praised!”


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