Rev. Joel Heckmann, pastor at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Okarche, OK, joins host Rev. Timothy Appel to study Proverbs 23:15-35.
As Solomon continues to recount the thirty sayings of wisdom, he once again implores his son to listen. The wisdom that Solomon speaks is centered in a proper fear of the LORD, which is not the terror that a slave experiences before his master, but the respect and honor that a son has toward his father. This proper fear of the LORD trusts His Word of promise for the future, even when sinners prosper now. In that trust of the LORD’s promise, Christians value the gift of marriage and family, living in the godly vocations of parents and children. Solomon warns against the misuse of God’s good gift that would lead to gluttony or drunkenness. With the great in the way of folly, the Christian knows the great worth of seeking after the wisdom that is found in Christ alone.
“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.
15 My son, if your heart is wise,
my heart too will be glad.
16 My inmost being[a] will exult
when your lips speak what is right.
17 Let not your heart envy sinners,
but continue in the fear of the Lord all the day.
18 Surely there is a future,
and your hope will not be cut off.
19 Hear, my son, and be wise,
and direct your heart in the way.
20 Be not among drunkards[b]
or among gluttonous eaters of meat,
21 for the drunkard and the glutton will come to poverty,
and slumber will clothe them with rags.
22 Listen to your father who gave you life,
and do not despise your mother when she is old.
23 Buy truth, and do not sell it;
buy wisdom, instruction, and understanding.
24 The father of the righteous will greatly rejoice;
he who fathers a wise son will be glad in him.
25 Let your father and mother be glad;
let her who bore you rejoice.
26 My son, give me your heart,
and let your eyes observe[c] my ways.
27 For a prostitute is a deep pit;
an adulteress[d] is a narrow well.
28 She lies in wait like a robber
and increases the traitors among mankind.
29 Who has woe? Who has sorrow?
Who has strife? Who has complaining?
Who has wounds without cause?
Who has redness of eyes?
30 Those who tarry long over wine;
those who go to try mixed wine.
31 Do not look at wine when it is red,
when it sparkles in the cup
and goes down smoothly.
32 In the end it bites like a serpent
and stings like an adder.
33 Your eyes will see strange things,
and your heart utter perverse things.
34 You will be like one who lies down in the midst of the sea,
like one who lies on the top of a mast.[e]
35 “They struck me,” you will say,[f] “but I was not hurt;
they beat me, but I did not feel it.
When shall I awake?
I must have another drink.”
- Proverbs 23:16 Hebrew My kidneys
- Proverbs 23:20 Hebrew those who drink too much wine
- Proverbs 23:26 Or delight in
- Proverbs 23:27 Hebrew a foreign woman
- Proverbs 23:34 Or of the rigging
- Proverbs 23:35 Hebrew lacks you will say
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.