Scripture :

Vs 1 A wise son hears his father’s instruction,
but a scoffer does not listen to rebuke.

Vs 10 By insolence comes nothing but strife,
but with those who take advice is wisdom.

Vs 13 Whoever despises the word brings destruction on himself, but he who reveres the commandment will be rewarded.

Vs 14 The teaching of the wise is a fountain of life,
that one may turn away from the snares of death.

Vs 16 In everything the prudent acts with knowledge, but a fool flaunts his folly.

Vs 18 Poverty and disgrace come to him who ignores instruction,
but whoever heeds reproof is honored.

Vs 20 Whoever walks with the wise becomes wise,
but the companion of fools will suffer harm.

Observation :

On first reading this proverb, it may seem like a rather random list of pieces of advice.
But to read again and more intently, I can see a recurring theme of the advice.
This sounds like a parent pleading with their child to not simply “listen” to wise advice, but to actually live it out.
These proverbs are not written so that someone will accumulate knowledge.
These proverbs are written as a warning against “strife”, “ruin”, “disgrace”, “destruction”, and even “death”.
But these warnings will only prove valuable if the listener “acts”, “heeds”, “takes”, “turns away”,  and “walks”.

Application :

What do I really want in life?
A mind storing all the right answers like a safe?
Or a testimony of experiences lived out?
I used to think life was something of a “truth quest”.
As if I needed to seek out and discover the real truth as the greatest accomplishment in life.
Now I see that I don’t discover “truth”, it exists!
I must now live it out.
I must now be obedient to the truth that is ancient.
I can’t be content to let it sit in my mind.
I recall learning the Hebrew word for “listen”. It is “shema”.
But the interesting thing about “shema”, is the greater implication of the Hebrew for “listen” is that there is no separate word for “obey”.
Obedience is implied!
Now, I can sit back and be proud that I know a bit of trivia about the Hebrew language.
Or I can recognize where I am not living out the command itself.
If I am truly “listening” to the truth, and wisdom and advice of God, then I will truly “obey” it.
But I like to seperate the two.
I can listen now and obey later when I feel like it.
No! True wisdom is not about accumulating information.
It is about actualizing transformation.
This is why we hear Jesus say, “Listen, listen” so often, and “Let them who have ears, hear”!
Jesus wanted people to live out His Kingdom ways.
Like these proverbs, the Sermon on the Mount was not a list of new pieces of advice.
Jesus tells me to be salt and light.
These are experienced … Tasted and Seen!
This is how testimony is created.
Do I want to be salt and light?
Then I must “shema” … I must “listen and obey”.

Prayer :

Thank you God for Truth and Wisdom
Help me walk with the wise.
Show them to me.
Show me who to surround myself with your wisdom.
Then show me who needs my example.
Give me eyes and courage to live it out
In Jesus name
Amen