Sunday, August 22, 2010

Proverbs 20:16-30

16 Take the garment of one who puts up security for a stranger; 

hold it in pledge if he does it for a wayward woman.

17 Food gained by fraud tastes sweet to a man, 

but he ends up with a mouth full of gravel.

18 Make plans by seeking advice; 

if you wage war, obtain guidance.

19 A gossip betrays a confidence; 

so avoid a man who talks too much.

20 If a man curses his father or mother, 

his lamp will be snuffed out in pitch darkness.

21 An inheritance quickly gained at the beginning 

will not be blessed at the end.

22 Do not say, "I'll pay you back for this wrong!" 

Wait for the LORD, and he will deliver you.

23 The LORD detests differing weights, 

and dishonest scales do not please him.

24 A man's steps are directed by the LORD. 

How then can anyone understand his own way?

25 It is a trap for a man to dedicate something rashly 

and only later to consider his vows.

26 A wise king winnows out the wicked; 

he drives the threshing wheel over them.

27 The lamp of the LORD searches the spirit of a man ; 

it searches out his inmost being.

28 Love and faithfulness keep a king safe; 

through love his throne is made secure.

29 The glory of young men is their strength, 

gray hair the splendor of the old.

30 Blows and wounds cleanse away evil, 

and beatings purge the inmost being.

Questions to consider:

  • Categorize these proverbs as to (a) observation, (b) interpretation, (c) application.
  • What is distinctive about the (a) message and (b) style of a proverb?
  • Can you find and explain the metaphors?
  • Remember the proverb you memorized yesterday?

Possibilities for prayer:

A man's steps are directed by the LORD. 

How then can anyone understand his own way?

It’s easy to try to plan out our lives so that everything will end up “just so.” But if we are truly trying to live lives that seek after God and the good things God has for us, we can really never know what the next steps will be in life. Let’s ask God for the courage to hand our lives completely over, and for the confidence to know that the steps we are led into by Him are ultimately for our own good.