Insights from Proverbs 17 for the 17th:
Proverbs 17 has a pulse to it. It beats like the heart of one who’s wronged and who’s also been wronged. That about includes us all, doesn’t it?
Solomon draws a clear line in the sand. Anyone who: mocks the poor, listens to lies, seeks only rebellion, rewards evil for good, justifies the wicked, condemns the just, loves transgression, punishes the righteous, or hits those who stand for uprightness are obviously on the wrong side of the ethical divide.
Multiple times he mentions a wayward child causing shame & sorrow (v. 2, 21, & 25), but there is also a tender counter verse about grandchildren being a man’s crown & the father being the glory of their children (6).
We know that there are 3 BIG M’s which require our constant diligence: Our Mind, Money, & Mouth. Proverbs 17 has 7 blatant warnings about that tricky little dictator; our mouth (v. 4, 7, 9, 10, 20, & 27-28). My favorite are the last two which basically say that if you have nothing smart to say, its smart to say nothing! ZIP IT!
Let me give verse one a contemporary spin: Better is a Hot-n-Ready with no drama, than caviar & champagne with a hot mess. Man, I have like zero tolerance for those reality shows with the filthy rich just being totally ridiculous. Why is this on TV? Why not follow some people around who are actually doing good in this world? Solomon’s point is just because they have nicer stuff, doesn’t mean they have a nicer life. Mo money, mo problems.
Ever see a dam holding back all that water? Imagine seeing a little crack with water springing out: that’s the beginning of a fight. Patch it early before it all comes crashing down & floods everything (v. 14).
Ever watch Band of Brothers? That’s verse 17.
Your thoughts affect your body. Make them merry or it will literally rot you from the inside out (v. 22).
Proverbs suddenly seems awfully relevant, doesn’t it? That’s because God’s truth never changes even though our culture does.
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