Thursday, August 19, 2010

Proverbs 19:1-15

1 Better a poor man whose walk is blameless 

than a fool whose lips are perverse.

2 It is not good to have zeal without knowledge, 

nor to be hasty and miss the way.

3 A man's own folly ruins his life, 

yet his heart rages against the LORD.

4 Wealth brings many friends, 

but a poor man's friend deserts him.

5 A false witness will not go unpunished, 

and he who pours out lies will not go free.

6 Many curry favor with a ruler, 

and everyone is the friend of a man who gives gifts.

7 A poor man is shunned by all his relatives— 

how much more do his friends avoid him! 

Though he pursues them with pleading, 

they are nowhere to be found.

8 He who gets wisdom loves his own soul; 

he who cherishes understanding prospers.

9 A false witness will not go unpunished, 

and he who pours out lies will perish.

10 It is not fitting for a fool to live in luxury— 

how much worse for a slave to rule over princes!

11 A man's wisdom gives him patience; 

it is to his glory to overlook an offense.

12 A king's rage is like the roar of a lion, 

but his favor is like dew on the grass.

13 A foolish son is his father's ruin, 

and a quarrelsome wife is like a constant dripping.

14 Houses and wealth are inherited from parents, 

but a prudent wife is from the LORD.

15 Laziness brings on deep sleep, 

and the shiftless man goes hungry.

Questions to consider:

  • Contrast the rich and the poor as to their (a) popularity and (b) ultimate success.
  • What is YOUR attitude toward (a) the rich and (b) the poor?
  • Is poverty necessarily related to sloth? Why?
  • What kind of people prosper, according to this passage?

Possibilities for prayer:

Have you ever found yourself so excited about something that you go ahead and do or say something without thinking about the consequences...and the consequences of those actions or words leave you wishing you’d thought before acting or speaking? It seems to me that such a situation is just what verse 2 in this passage is referring to. Knowledge and consideration should be important components of our words and actions, because acting too quickly and without thought can lead to unfortunate consequences. Let’s pray for patience to thoughtfully consider our words and actions, for the ability to not be hasty and “miss the way.”