Rev. James Preus, pastor at Trinity Lutheran Church in Ottumwa, IA, joins host Rev. Timothy Appel to study Proverbs 17:7-24.
Solomon continues to teach the benefit of the way of divine wisdom in contrast to the harm that comes from following the way of folly. The mouth speaks from the overflow of the heart. Each of us must examine, then, both what we speak and what we hear. Where conflict arises, Christian wisdom does not seek escalation, for growing strife is from the devil. Instead, Christian wisdom seeks after reconciliation, covering the neighbor’s sin with the forgiveness won by Christ. Such wisdom cannot be purchased with money. In a tragic irony, an abundance of money may lead only to folly. The company one keeps is of utmost importance; Christians need to be surrounded by Christian friends who will fill their ears with the Word of God. This begins at home, as parents faithfully discipline their children and raise them in the instruction of the Lord. This is done looking forward to the joy of children who continue to confess the Christian faith for the rest of their lives.
“Wisdom and Instruction” is a mini-series on Sharper Iron that goes through the book of Proverbs. Although Proverbs is perhaps best known for its short sayings full of practical advice, the one true God has so much more in this book of wisdom. True wisdom begins with the fear of the LORD. Christians walk His way of righteousness rather than the way of wickedness because we trust that all good gifts come to us through His Son Jesus Christ, who is His wisdom made flesh for our salvation.
Sharper Iron, hosted by Rev. Timothy Appel, looks at the text of Holy Scripture both in its broad context and its narrow detail, all for the sake of proclaiming Christ crucified and risen for sinners. Two pastors engage with God’s Word to sharpen not only their own faith and knowledge, but the faith and knowledge of all who listen.
Sharper Iron is underwritten by Lutheran Church Extension Fund, where your investments help support the work of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod. Visit lcef.org.
7 Fine speech is not becoming to a fool;
still less is false speech to a prince.
8 A bribe is like a magic[a] stone in the eyes of the one who gives it;
wherever he turns he prospers.
9 Whoever covers an offense seeks love,
but he who repeats a matter separates close friends.
10 A rebuke goes deeper into a man of understanding
than a hundred blows into a fool.
11 An evil man seeks only rebellion,
and a cruel messenger will be sent against him.
12 Let a man meet a she-bear robbed of her cubs
rather than a fool in his folly.
13 If anyone returns evil for good,
evil will not depart from his house.
14 The beginning of strife is like letting out water,
so quit before the quarrel breaks out.
15 He who justifies the wicked and he who condemns the righteous
are both alike an abomination to the Lord.
16 Why should a fool have money in his hand to buy wisdom
when he has no sense?
17 A friend loves at all times,
and a brother is born for adversity.
18 One who lacks sense gives a pledge
and puts up security in the presence of his neighbor.
19 Whoever loves transgression loves strife;
he who makes his door high seeks destruction.
20 A man of crooked heart does not discover good,
and one with a dishonest tongue falls into calamity.
21 He who sires a fool gets himself sorrow,
and the father of a fool has no joy.
22 A joyful heart is good medicine,
but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.
23 The wicked accepts a bribe in secret[b]
to pervert the ways of justice.
24 The discerning sets his face toward wisdom,
but the eyes of a fool are on the ends of the earth.
- Proverbs 17:8 Or precious
- Proverbs 17:23 Hebrew a bribe from the bosom
English Standard Version (ESV)
The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Permanent Text Edition® (2016). Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.