Today, we continue our journey through the Bible with today’s study of Proverbs. May God show us what He wants us to learn?
“May these words of my mouth and this meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, Lord, my Rock, and my Redeemer.”Psalm 19:14
As we study the Bible alone or in a group setting, there are several questions we can ask ourselves to help us dig deeper. The five questions are:
- What does the scripture say about God?
- Then what does the scripture say about me?
- Does something in this passage challenge me?
- What gives me hope in this passage?
- Is anything unclear to me?
I hope these questions help you as much as they help me.
- Author: Solomon wrote most of this book, with Agur and Lemuel contributing.
- Audience: The Israelites.
- Date Written: About 700 BC
- Length: 31 Chapters.
- Keywords: The fear of the Lord.
- Key Verses: The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction (1:4).
- Key People: Those needing instruction like the young.
Summary of Proverbs:
The dominant theme of Proverbs is for moral instructions of the people of Israel. The book contains instruction for right living, as found in the beginning of the book in chapter 1, verse 4; “for giving prudence to those who are simple, knowledge and discretion to the young.” And the work also includes brief discussions on wisdom, justice, temperance, work habits, and purity.
Proverbs accomplishes something no other biblical book does in the way it simply compiles lots of examples and instructions for living a life for God. While other books articulate profound theological truths, Proverbs is only concerned with instructing people on the path of wisdom. The authors recognized the varied conditions of a person’s life and provided philosophies to apply in a diversity of situations. Solomon was the guidepost to point us to the way to wisdom. Unfortunately, he strayed from those ways later in his life.
Sections of the Book:
The book of Proverbs contains nine significant themes, which are:
- Prologue: Purpose and Theme (1:1-7).
- The Superiority of the Way of Wisdom (1:8-9:18).
- The Main Collection of Solomon’s Proverbs (10:1-22:16).
- The Thirty Sayings of the Wise (22:17-24:22).
- Additional Sayings of the Wise (24:23-34.
- Hezekiah’s Collection of Solomon’s Proverbs (chapters. 25-29).
- The Sayings of Agur (chapter 30).
- The Sayings of King Lemuel (31:1-9).
- The Ideal Wife (31:10-31).
Messages in Proverbs:
The central message of Proverbs is that true wisdom is based on our relationship to God: we cannot have true wisdom apart from an active relationship with our Lord. And Solomon points back to the fact that all wisdom comes from God, not from a person. We see this message clearly throughout the book, but here are a few examples:
- “The Lord gives wisdom; from his mouth come knowledge and understanding” (Prov. 2:6).
- “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own insight” (Prov. 3:5).
- “Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord and turn away from evil” (Prov. 3:7).
Solomon shows us that only faith in God, not in human experiences, will lead us to wisdom.
And like so many other books in the Bible, we see God’s character on display in this book. They are:
- Merciful – 28:13.
- Omniscient – 5:12.
- Provident – 3:6; 16:3, 933; 19:21; 20:24; 21:30, 31.
- Wise – 3:19; 15:11.
The readers of Proverbs learned wisdom from this book. The New Testament believers saw the word of God in human form and He became our source of wisdom for today, as shown in 1 Corinthians 1:30; “It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God—that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption.”
All Lessons from the Bible
Each book of the Bible contains lessons for us to learn and historical information. We must study God’s Word to see what to do and what not to do in life. Paul reminds us of the importance of the words within the text in 2 Timothy 3.
“14 But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you learned it, 15 and how from infancy you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. 16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.”2 Timothy 3:14-17
Please grant me the understanding and knowledge of You and Your word. As I open my Bible to read the scriptures, it gives me wisdom and discernment. And even as I sit and listen to the pastor, preacher or apostle reveal what Your Holy Book is speaking into my life, help me see and understand. Help me know Jesus Christ and how He lived His life so I can follow in His precious footsteps.