Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Proverbs 13 - Teach Your Children To Love The Triune GOD from Childhood

Proverbs 13:1-25 NIV

1A wise son heeds his father’s instruction,
but a mocker does not respond to rebukes.
2From the fruit of their lips people enjoy good things,
but the unfaithful have an appetite for violence.
3Those who guard their lips preserve their lives,
but those who speak rashly will come to ruin.

4A sluggard’s appetite is never filled,
but the desires of the diligent are fully satisfied.

5The righteous hate what is false,
but the wicked make themselves a stench
and bring shame on themselves.

6Righteousness guards the person of integrity,
but wickedness overthrows the sinner.

7 One person pretends to be rich, yet has nothing;
another pretends to be poor, yet has great wealth.

8A person’s riches may ransom their life,
but the poor cannot respond to threatening rebukes.

9The light of the righteous shines brightly,
but the lamp of the wicked is snuffed out.

10Where there is strife, there is pride,
but wisdom is found in those who take advice.

11 Dishonest money dwindles away,
but whoever gathers money little by little makes it grow.

12Hope deferred makes the heart sick,
but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life.

13Whoever scorns instruction will pay for it,
but whoever respects a command is rewarded.

14The teaching of the wise is a fountain of life,
turning a person from the snares of death.

15Good judgment wins favor,
but the way of the unfaithful leads to their destruction.

16All who are prudent act with knowledge,
but fools expose their folly.

17A wicked messenger falls into trouble,
but a trustworthy envoy brings healing.

18Whoever disregards discipline comes to poverty and shame,
but whoever heeds correction is honored.

19A longing fulfilled is sweet to the soul,
but fools detest turning from evil.

20Walk with the wise and become wise,
for a companion of fools suffers harm.

21Trouble pursues the sinner,
but the righteous are rewarded with good things.

22A good person leaves an inheritance for their children’s children,
but a sinner’s wealth is stored up for the righteous.

23An unplowed field produces food for the poor,
but injustice sweeps it away.

24 Whoever spares the rod hates their children,
but the one who loves their children is careful to discipline them.

25The righteous eat to their hearts’ content,
but the stomach of the wicked goes hungry.

Verse 24

"Whoever spares the rod hates their children, but the one
who loves their children is careful to discipline them"

Hannah is the wife of Elkanah. Elkanah also has another wife (Peninnah) who bore him children. Peninnah, at every chance, teases and criticizes Hannah about her barrenness to the point of Hannah's deep despair. Her husband sees her distress and tries to uncover her deep despair with these questions. "Hannah, why do you weep? Why do you not eat? Why is your heart sad? Am I not more to you than ten sons?" The story indicates that Hannah gave no answer to the questions and rose and presented herself before YAHWEH weeping bitterly in the Temple.

When she is found in the Temple by the priest she is praying silently, but her lips are moving. The priest witnesses this odd posture and concludes she is drunk. In her despair she prays to YAHWEH for a child and if her prayer is granted she will give the son back to YAHWEH. After Hannah's explanation of her sobriety, Eli blesses her with peace and a guarantee that YAHWEH of Israel Will Grant her request. She went home, ate and drank with her husband, and was filled with hope. Subsequently Hannah becomes pregnant; her child is named Samuel. The time had come to offer the yearly sacrifice at the Temple but Hannah stayed home. She promises to go with him to the Temple when Samuel is weaned and planned to leave him with Eli to be trained as a Nazirite.

The book of Samuel records Hannah's beautiful prayer to Yahweh. She rejoices and exalts the Holy One there is no father like YAHWEH, therefore, the nation should rejoice also in this HOLY ONE. This story of Hannah intertwines itself with the culture of the nation of Israel. Eli is the high priest of Shiloh, the second-to-last Israelite judge (succeeded only by Samuel - see 1 Samuel 7:15) before the rule of the kings, therefore, the Shiloh tradition will become an old and lost tradition that when the prophet Jeremiah comes on the scene in the history of YAHWEH's people, he will seek to renew and to bring back the way of the Shiloh tradition to the people of Israel because the kings have become wicked and defiled the Temple and Tradition of YAHWEH.

The sons of Eli – A Bad Case for Child Education

The sons of Eli, Hophni and Phinehas, meanwhile, were behaving wickedly, for example by taking for themselves all the prime cuts of meat from sacrifices, and by committing adultery with the women who served at the sanctuary entrance. Eli is aware of their behavior but he rebukes them too lightly and is unable to stop them. The sons continue in their sinful behavior, and so, according to the text, a man of GOD prophesies to Eli that Eli and his family will be punished for this, with all male descendants dying before reaching old age and being usually placed in positions subservient to priests from other lineages. 

The curse alludes to a previous (not appearing elsewhere in the Bible) promise from YAHWEH of Eli's lineage continuing eternally (c.f. similar promises to King David and Jehonadab). While this continuation is not revoked, a curse is placed on all of Eli's male descendants forever. As a sign of the accuracy of this future, Eli is told by the man of YAHWEH (Samuel) that his sons will die on the same day.

Samuel's Training

Eli goes on to train Samuel. When Samuel hears YAHWEH speaking to him, he at first thinks it is Eli; Eli, who doesn't hear YAHWEH calling Samuel, eventually realizes the truth, and instructs Samuel on how to respond. Samuel is told that YAHWEH's threat (which isn't elaborated further) will be carried out on Eli and his family, and that there is nothing that can be done to prevent it. Eli asks Samuel what he had been told, insisting that he be told the whole truth, and so Samuel does; Eli reacts by saying that YAHWEH Will Do As HE Judges best.

Some years later, when Samuel had become an adult, the Philistines attacked Eben-Ezer, eventually capturing the Ark of the Covenant from the Israelites and killed Eli's sons, who accompanied the Ark to battle as priests. (The Israelites had brought the Ark with them to battle under the premise that there was no possible way YAHWEH Would Allow it to enter enemy hands, an assumption that proved to be incorrect.) Eli, who was nearly blind, was unaware of the event until he asked about all the commotion; Eli was told what has happened from a soldier who had fled from the battle. He was sitting in a chair and the soldier told him what had happened. In reaction to the news that the Ark of GOD had been captured, Eli fell backwards out of the chair he was sitting in, and died from a broken neck. He was a Judge of Israel for a total of 40 years, and died at the age of 98.

His daughter-in-law, the wife of Phinehas, was pregnant and near the time of delivery. When she heard the news that the Ark of GOD had been captured and that her father-in-law and husband were dead, she went into labor and gave birth, but was overcome by labor pains. As she was dying, the women attending her said, “Don't despair; you have given birth to a son”. But she did not respond or pay any attention. She named the boy Ichabod, saying “The Glory Has Departed from Israel”- because of the capture of the Ark of GOD and the deaths of her father-in-law and her husband. She said, The Glory Has Departed from Israel, for the Ark of GOD Has Been Captured.”

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Proverbs 12 - Wisdom Is Produced By The Fear Of JEHOVAH

Proverbs 12:1-28 NIV

1Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge,
but whoever hates correction is stupid.

2Good people obtain Favor from The LORD,
but HE Condemns those who devise wicked schemes.

3No one can be established through wickedness,
but the righteous cannot be uprooted.

4 A wife of noble character is her husband’s crown,
but a disgraceful wife is like decay in his bones.

5The plans of the righteous are just,
but the advice of the wicked is deceitful.

6The words of the wicked lie in wait for blood,
but the speech of the upright rescues them.

7The wicked are overthrown and are no more,
but the house of the righteous stands firm.

8A person is praised according to their prudence,
and one with a warped mind is despised.

9 Better to be a nobody and yet have a servant
than pretend to be somebody and have no food.

10The righteous care for the needs of their animals,
but the kindest acts of the wicked are cruel.

11 Those who work their land will have abundant food,
but those who chase fantasies have no sense.

12The wicked desire the stronghold of evildoers,
but the root of the righteous endures.

13Evildoers are trapped by their sinful talk,
and so the innocent escape trouble.

14From the fruit of their lips people are filled with good things,
and the work of their hands brings them reward.

15The way of fools seems right to them,
but the wise listen to advice.

16Fools show their annoyance at once,
but the prudent overlook an insult.

17An honest witness tells the truth,
but a false witness tells lies.

18The words of the reckless pierce like swords,
but the tongue of the wise brings healing.

19Truthful lips endure forever,
but a lying tongue lasts only a moment.

20Deceit is in the hearts of those who plot evil,
but those who promote peace have joy.

21No harm overtakes the righteous,
but the wicked have their fill of trouble.

22 The LORD Detests lying lips,

But HE Delights in people who are trustworthy.

23The prudent keep their knowledge to themselves,
but a fool’s heart blurts out folly.

24Diligent hands will rule,
but laziness ends in forced labor.

25Anxiety weighs down the heart,
but a kind word cheers it up.

26The righteous choose their friends carefully,
but the way of the wicked leads them astray.

27The lazy do not roast any game,
but the diligent feed on the riches of the hunt.

28 In the way of righteousness there is life;

along that path is immortality.

Darby's Bible Synopsis

The following commentary covers Chapters 10 through 31.

In chapter 10 begin the details which teach those who give ear how to avoid the snares into which the simple might fall, the path to be followed in many cases, and the consequences of men's actions: in short, that which characterizes wisdom in detail, what may be prudence for man, Divine Discretion for the children of GOD; and also, the result of GOD'S Government, whatever appearances may be for a while. 

It is well to observe, that there is no question of redemption or propitiation in this book; it proposes a walk according to the Wisdom of GOD'S Government.

In the final chapter we have the character of a king according to wisdom, and that of the woman in her own house-the king who does not allow himself that which, by darkening his moral discernment through the indulgence of his lusts, would make him unfit to govern. In the woman we see the persevering and devoted industry which fills the house with riches, brings honor to its inhabitants, and removes all the cares and anxieties produced by sloth. The typical application of these two specific characters is too evident to need explanation. The example of the woman is very useful, as to the spirit of the thing, to one who labors in the assembly.

Although in this book the wisdom produced by the Fear of JEHOVAH is only applied to this world, it is on that very account of great use to the Christian, who do, in view of his heavenly privileges, might, more or less, forget the continual Government of GOD. It is very important for the Christian to remember the Fear of The LORD, and the effect of GOD'S Presence on the details of his conduct; and I repeat that which I said at the beginning, that it is great grace which deigns to apply Divine Wisdom to all the details of the life of man in the midst of the confusion brought in by sin. 

Occupied with heavenly things, the Christian is less in the way of discovering, by his own experience, the clue to the labyrinth of evil through which he is passing. GOD Has Considered this, and HE Has Laid Down this first principle, "wise unto that which is good, and simple concerning evil." Thus the Christian may be ignorant of evil and yet avoid it through his knowledge of good.

The Wisdom of GOD Gives him the latter; the Government of GOD Provides for all the rest. Now, in the Proverbs, we have these things in principle and in detail. I have not dwelt on the figurative character of the forms of evil. They are rather principles than figures. 

But the violent man of the last days is continually found in the Psalms; and Babylon is the full accomplishment of the woman who takes the simple in her snares and leads them down to death; just as CHRIST is the Perfect Wisdom of GOD Which Leads to life.

But these two things which manifest evil proceed from the heart of man at all times since the fall: only we have seen that there is an active development of the wiles of the evil woman, who has her own house and her own arrangements. It is not simply the principle of corruption, but an organized system, as is that of Sovereign Wisdom.

Proverbs 11 - JESUS Gives Everything We Need

Proverbs 11:1-31 NIV

1The LORD Detests dishonest scales,
but accurate weights find Favor with HIM.

2 When pride comes, then comes disgrace,
but with humility comes Wisdom.

3The integrity of the upright guides them,
but the unfaithful are destroyed by their duplicity.

4Wealth is worthless in the day of wrath,
but righteousness delivers from death.

5The righteousness of the blameless makes their paths straight,
but the wicked are brought down by their own wickedness.

6The righteousness of the upright delivers them,
but the unfaithful are trapped by evil desires.

7Hopes placed in mortals die with them;
all the promise of their power comes to nothing.

8The righteous person is rescued from trouble,
and it falls on the wicked instead.

9With their mouths the godless destroy their neighbors,
but through knowledge the righteous escape.

10When the righteous prosper, the city rejoices;
when the wicked perish, there are shouts of joy.

11Through the blessing of the upright a city is exalted,
but by the mouth of the wicked it is destroyed.

12Whoever derides their neighbor has no sense,
but the one who has understanding holds their tongue.

13A gossip betrays a confidence,
but a trustworthy person keeps a secret.

14For lack of guidance a nation falls,
but victory is won through many advisers.

15Whoever puts up security for a stranger will surely suffer,
but whoever refuses to shake hands in pledge is safe.

16A kindhearted woman gains honor,
but ruthless men gain only wealth.

17Those who are kind benefit themselves,
but the cruel bring ruin on themselves.

18A wicked person earns deceptive wages,
but the one who sows righteousness reaps a sure reward.

19Truly the righteous attain life,
but whoever pursues evil finds death.

20The Lord detests those whose hearts are perverse,
but HE Delights In those whose ways are blameless.

21Be sure of this: The wicked will not go unpunished,
but those who are righteous will go free.

22 Like a gold ring in a pig’s snout
is a beautiful woman who shows no discretion.

23The desire of the righteous ends only in good,
but the hope of the wicked only in wrath.

24 One person gives freely, yet gains even more;
another withholds unduly, but comes to poverty.

25 A generous person will prosper;
whoever refreshes others will be refreshed.

26 People curse the one who hoards grain,
but they pray GOD’S blessing on the one who is willing to sell.

27Whoever seeks good finds favor,
but evil comes to one who searches for it.

28Those who trust in their riches will fall,
but the righteous will thrive like a green leaf.

29Whoever brings ruin on their family will inherit only wind,
and the fool will be servant to the wise.

30The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life,
and the one who is wise saves lives.

31If the righteous receive their due on earth,
how much more the ungodly and the sinner!

Verse 24, 25, 26

One person gives freely, yet gains even more;
another withholds unduly, but comes to poverty.
A generous person will prosper;
whoever refreshes others will be refreshed.
People curse the one who hoards grain,
but they pray GOD’S Blessing on the one who is willing to sell.

The liberal soul shall be made fat - He who gives to the distressed, in the true spirit of charity, shall get a hundred folds from GOD'S Mercy. How wonderful is The LORD! HE Gives the wealth, Gives the heart to use it aright, and Recompenses the man for the deed though all the fruit was found from GOD HIMSELF!

A man who distributes in the right spirit gets better himself than the poor man does who receives the bounty. Thus it is more blessed to give than to receive.

In the early stages of commerce there seems no way of making money rapidly so sure as that of buying up grain in time of famine, waiting until the famine presses heavily, and then selling at higher prices. Men hate this selfishness, and pour blessings upon him who sells at a moderate profit.