Thursday, September 1, 2011

September 1st – Proverbs 1: Word to the YOUNG

“The proverbs of Solomon son of David, king of Israel: for attaining wisdom and discipline; for understanding words of insight; for acquiring a disciplined and prudent life, doing what is right and just and fair;” – Proverbs 1:1-3

Is there anything wisdom from the Proverbs cannot do? The list of the benefits of wisdom is staggering, while the list of the consequences of NOT having wisdom is just as long. This Proverb tells us of some particular benefits that are available for the young and inexperienced.

“for giving prudence to the simple, knowledge and discretion to the young… Proverbs 1:4

The word for knowledge here comes from the Hebrew root word “da‛ath” and it comes from another Hebrew word “Yada” which is used many times to describe worship. At its root it means “to know”, but not in cerebral head knowledge, but in experiential understanding. It’s the same word that is used here to describe sexual intimacy with a woman!

“And Adam knew Eve his wife. And she conceived and bore Cain, and said, I have gotten a man from Jehovah.” Genesis 4:1

The wisdom contained in Proverbs will give the young man this kind of experiential knowledge. A young person does NOT need to bash his head against the wall, making the same mistakes that his father and his grandfather made before him! Wisdom enables us to avoid those costly errors in judgment and get straight to the good stuff! It’s asinine to suggest (as many do) that each young person has to make their way in the world and can only learn through mistakes. Only a great fool would ignore the clear warnings of wisdom and plunge headlong into the dark paths forged by his forefathers!

Unashamedly, when I met my wife I had NEVER had sex with, kissed or even held hands with another woman! Some might say I was sheltered and some might say I was inexperienced… and they would be right! But what I can tell you is that I was PURE and so was she! There are MANY things I have never done! I have never used drugs, smoked a cigarette, visited a prostitute or been in a strip club. To suggest that I need to “experience” these things before helping someone in bondage to drugs, sex or nicotine is ridiculous! The end result of that logic would say that Jesus couldn’t help us because He never sinned!

"He committed no sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth." – I Peter 2:22

Another great benefit of wisdom to the young is that it gives “discretion to the young”. This translation really doesn’t say what the word means. Discretion here is basically talking about a plan, a plot or a purpose. Wisdom gives the young a plan, a step by step guide to get where he is going. It gives us the plot, the point of our lives. It gives us the purpose for our existence and keeps us grounded in the eternal consequences of our actions, never letting us forget out ultimate purpose. We sometimes tell people without a lot of knowledge to “get a clue” and that’s precisely what wisdom will do. Wisdom gives you experiential knowledge you didn’t earn and a purpose you didn’t have to create yourself.

Wise people learn from others mistakes, fools make their own.