- The Danger of Promises (Prov. 6:1-5)
- The Diligence in Life (Prov. 6:6-11)
- The Deception in the Mirror (Prov. 6:12-19)
- The Distressed Life (Prov. 6:20-35)
Let’s make this personal now. This chapter is not for someone else than you.
Having defined what wisdom is and where I can find it, Solomon starts boldly with adultery in the last chapter and now he starts talking about some other behaviors to avoid in order to conduct my life.
Through the whole book of Proverbs, I will find practical principles that I need to apply in order to live a wise life honoring and glorifying God. Sometimes I say that life should come with an instruction manual, and I forget that actually It has one: The Word of God.
The Danger of Promises (Prov. 6:1-5)
Looking for an instruction manual to live life and be diligent with finances? Well. Here is one: never get a loan, lend or become surety if is not strictly necessary.
Living a wise life includes the realization of order and diligence in our finances and possessions. When we become slaves of a huge depth or loan, we become bitter as we cannot live free. Our word, peace and honor will be compromised.
I know is very common to get loans and mortgages to buy cars and houses, or medic care. I am not talking about this in here. I am talking about unnecessary depths I acquire just to fulfill selfish desires as I am not happy with the things God has provided. I am talking about desiring a bigger house or stunning car just because, with no need. I’m talking about acquiring the new cellphone plan paying almost double when I cannot afford it instead of contract a plan with a simpler phone I can afford. I am talking about get a huge loan to go and vacation somewhere knowing that it will compromise my peace and financial stability.
How many times I want something, and I have no money, but I use my credit card for pay for it knowing that I won’t be able to pay at the end of the month? Is foolish to live a life like this. This is not wisdom.
(Prov. 6:1-5) In this passage we can read about the warning in become surety to a person and borrow money from your friend. This same topic will be discussed by Solomon in several chapters in this book as becomes a real danger to our own peace. Promise to pay, promise to pay for someone or lend money to others is a huge and serious risk we need to be very careful to assume and actually, the advice here is to avoid it.
Solomon says to his son that if he has made the mistake, he should deliver himself of it. The commandment is to have peace and don’t promise to pay to or for someone else. The implicit commandment is to avoid compromise your word and be content with the things you have instead. This zeal includes your own possessions and honor; and also, to cherish your friendship with others.
Solomon says: “So do this, my son, and deliver yourself; For you have come into the hand of your friend:”. He advices his Son to do everything in his possibilities to get out of that situation as fast as he can so he can rest. Go and fix the situation and deliver yourself of the transaction. He says: “Go and humble yourself; Plead with your friend.” … “like a gazelle from the hand of the hunter,”. Do it quickly. Don’t wait.
The key is to avoid these compromises since the first moment. Do not risk your word, your honor, your peace, your friendship. How many relationships and lives have been being ruined with bad deals. If you want peace with your brother and with yourself avoid borrowing, avoid lending and avoid promising to pay for others.
This is the first call that Solomon does to his son regarding this topic, and we will study it in more detail later on this book. We will be studying that is wiser to bless your friend instead to lend him. We will be studying that is wiser to save resources and prepare yourself for an expense or deal in order to have a better position and to close the deal without losing peace.
The Diligence in Life (Prov. 6:6-11)
Now we will be talking of diligence:
(Prov. 6:6-11) Just immediately after advising against borrowing, lending and becoming surety for others, Solomon “softly” and “kindly” recommends us to put us to work. We need to be diligent with our preparation and administration of our resources in life.
I can imagine Solomon saying to our face: “hey sluggard, lazy, slothful!! Stand up and get to work. Don’t be there just watching TV or scrolling down social media! Don’t wait for money coming in your mailbox! Don’t wait for others to pay everything for you! You should start helping your family! Don’t wait for the storm but be ready!”
This is NOT the same and it does NOT mean to work by our own strength and get resources to be “sufficient” and “independent” from God, no. The advice here is to use all the blessings and skills that He gave us to fulfill our needs.
Just remember, and I want to be very emphatic: Don’t ever put your trust in your abilities and possessions, but in God. Trust God as He will provide, and He will make the way and then walk there.
God knows exactly what we need. The sad part is that this is often not what we want though, and we are not content.
He gives us the abilities we need; He provides the opportunities, and He opens the doors. It is our responsibility to be diligent in our efforts to honor the blessings that God gave us. Don’t waste your time and energy with vain issues of this life but look for God’s will in His word and prayer.
Look for some examples in the Bible as in the book of Nehemiah: They knew they needed to rebuild the wall and the work was great and extensive. They knew God’s will and they labored day and night until completed it.
Nehemiah 4:21-23 – “So we labored in the work, and half of the men held the spears from daybreak until the stars appeared. At the same time I also said to the people, “Let each man and his servant stay at night in Jerusalem, that they may be our guard by night and a working party by day.” So neither I, my brethren, my servants, nor the men of the guard who followed me took off our clothes, except that everyone took them off for washing.”
In Psalms 128 we can read:
Psalms 128:1-2 – “Blessed is every one who fears the Lord, who walks in His ways. When you eat the labor of your hands, you shall be happy, and it shall be well with you.”
Look that fearing the Lord and walk in His ways, that involves being in His will and getting wisdom, is directly related to the blessing of labor with our own hands. Is not coincidence these two topics are together in this Psalm and in this Proverb. When the Lord reveals His will through His word, we should then trust Him and start working.
The Deception in the Mirror (Prov. 6:12-19)
Thinking in the matters covered in this Proverb, I can see a see a father instructing with the best interest and heart to his son. I can see he starts talking about don’t compromise your peace lending, borrowing or paying for a friend and never for a stranger. Then he talks about what to do instead and how to be prepared in life. He advises to avoid becoming a lazy and irresponsible man, but to work and be diligent. And now, continuing the progression Solomon is talking about the wickedness of man and its characteristics.
I believe there is a close connection between being idle and the wickedness. When we are idle, our fleshy mind starts to get stronger and free. So, I can understand why Solomon is talking about this kind of man right after talking against idleness and talking about being busy instead.
He is saying something like: “Ok, let’s talk about financials with your friends and strangers… Oh, and talking about finances, let’s talk about work, idleness, diligence… And now I need to warn you about the wickedness of people and why you should be aware of it and avoid becoming a wicked person… And (as we will read in the last part of this chapter and the first part in chapter seven) pay attention because I will tell you (again) about the danger of adultery! Man, all this wickedness in the world!!! I have so much to teach you!!”
He says: (Prov. 6:12-15). Now Solomon is talking about the person we need to avoid in our lives. I believe that we need to be careful not to become this person and not only look around identifying or pointing at people. No. This is for you to be careful of it.
The perverse mouth includes to talk in someone else’s back, to plan wickedly, to gossiping, to curse, to sows discord… We can read that this person is considered worthless. The wickedness of this person is so obvious but doesn’t want to stop it.
When I read passages like this instead of imagining or trying to match these characteristics with someone, I should evaluate my behavior and how I talk to others and of others. I need to evaluate where my mind goes where it wanders. What am I thinking? What am I planning to say? Why am I planning to do or say evil to someone? Do I have the need to tell something? Am I using the excuse: “oh I’m saying this -just between you and me- to you to pray better.”?
Stop the gossip and the misinformation. Be trustworthy instead. That everything that goes out of your mouth be pure and true.
Matthew 5:37 – “But let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ ‘No.’ For whatever is more than these is from the evil one.”
Idleness is dangerous. Keep your mind busy with godly activities. The wicked will perish. We learned about this in the first chapters and there is no other destination for him than death.
(Prov. 6:16-19) When wickedness is present, it is easy to fall into all this actions. We don’t realize but sooner or later we will become this wicked person if we don’t guard our minds and hearts.
Highlight these in your bible. Have this in your mind and examine your heart. Ask God to reveal this to you:
Psalm 139:23-24 – “Search me, O God, and know my heart; try me, and know my anxieties; and see if there is any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.”
The Distressed Life (Prov. 6:20-35)
Reminder of the value of wisdom
(Prov. 6:20-23)As a precious necklace adorning my chest, I need to have His commandments; not to show them off, but to myself to keep them as my biggest treasure. Knowing more about God is my real joy and most valuable activity.
A heart made new in Christ, will treasure the Word of God. Will be moved by It, and everything will be exciting and interesting. Knowing the attributes of God, knowing His character, His nature, His unchangeable nature will lead us to love Him more and to love Him is to obey Him.
By having God’s word to know Him and know His paths, I will find favor (that means also grace, acceptance, good-will) from God as we learned in chapter 1. I will understand that after receiving the salvation in grace by Christ in the cross and by His resurrection, the biggest favor to my life is to live in His will. This means that being obedient is a gift to us.
And now apply the wisdom!
(Prov. 6:24-28) Remember from chapter 4:
Proverbs 4:14-15 – “Do not enter the path of the wicked, And do not walk in the way of evil. Avoid it, do not travel on it. Turn away from it and pass on.”
Don’t walk these roads. Don’t overestimate yourself. Don’t take the risk!
1 Corinthians 10:12 – “Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall.”
(Prov. 6:29-35) We discussed in the last chapters about the way of the wicked with the only destination of destruction. Each person will fall in his own sin. It is a tragedy. It will cut you to pieces. Allowing to fall in this temptation will destroy you.
Married man and woman should love and honor each other until death. Single man and woman should live in purity and sanctity. Adultery is sin as it goes against God’s commandments (Period). Nothing can justify to cheat on the spouse (Period). Sex is only allowed and can be only consumed and enjoyed in marriage (Period). Fornication is sin (Period).
Matthew 5:28-29 – “But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart. If your right eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell.”