Proverbs 25: More proverbs of Solomon.

October 1, 2015.

Daily Reading: Proverbs 25.

Background: Proverbs 23-24.

Concepts and Connections.

Chapter 25

Proverbs of Solomon: Chapter 25 seems to mark a place in the book of proverbs, as it begins with a heading that indicates that these are the proverbs of Solomon that were copied during the reign of Hezekiah. There are three sections of the chapter that seem to work as units to themselves, and then a final section that is more like what we have seen in the bulk of the book so far, having couplets, or maybe two verses, pertaining to one idea of wisdom. The first section (v. 2-7a) deals with the needs and wisdom about a king, but we should not overlook an interesting concept that is given in the first verse: “It is the glory of God to conceal things…” This could be the concept of epistemic distance, which is the idea that God does not reveal Himself outright to us, so that we would not have a choice to believe in Him or find Him, but He is also not so far removed that we cannot find him (as the second part of the verse may imply); or, it could simply be a reference to God’s thoughts and ways being higher than our thoughts and ways, and not everything is revealed to us for one reason or another (see also Deuteronomy 29:29 and Romans 11:33). The rest of this section deals with the needs of the king and how to act in the presence of the king, so that you aren’t put to shame. The next section (v. 7b-10) deals with disputes with your neighbor and how to wisely handle them. Note that it is unwise to hastily act, but wise to first gather all the information and try to settle the matter with your neighbor alone. Too often do we act upon something without knowing the full situation or we don’t settle our disputes one on one, and we are put to shame just as is said here. The third section (v. 11-14) deals with three different kinds of words: wise words, good/faithful words and empty words. A word fitly spoken and the words of reprove to a listening ear have great value, a good word refreshes the soul, but empty words are like clouds with no rain- a man who is full of promise but only gives disappointment. The final section (v. 15-28), which is more like what we have seen in the bulk of this book, spans a range of concepts of wisdom. Particular concepts of note include: patience and a soft tongue persuade men (v. 15), self control in eating and in general should be sought after (v. 16, 27-28), we should not over stay our welcome (v. 17), we should learn how to comfort, as joyful songs are useless to a heavy heart (v. 20), do good things to your enemy and reap coals of fire on their head (v. 21-22, see also Romans 12:20), a quarrelsome wife is hard to live with (v. 24), good news refreshes the soul (v. 25) and there is great defeat when the righteous give way before the wicked (v. 26).

Tomorrow’s Reading: Joel 1-3.

Study to be wise.

-Walter

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