Proverbs judges every thought or action by one standard “is this wise?” Wisdom is above all practical and down to earth. Young people as well as old can and should have it. Wisdom teaches you how to live. It combines understanding with discipline – the kind of discipline an athlete needs in training. It also adds a healthy dose of good common sense – except that common sense isn’t, and never has been, common.
How do you become a wise person? You must first begin to listen. Wisdom is freely available to those who will stop talking and start paying attention – to God and His Word, to parents, to wise counselors. Anybody can become wise. Proverbs says: Wisdom is not reserved for a brainy smart person, but for the simple as well. But becoming wise requires self-discipline to study and humbly seek wisdom at every opportunity. We are to ask God for it, and then seek it like a precious treasure.
What could be wrong with just talking, as long as you don’t actually lie? Proverbs sees plenty of danger. Words are dynamite: they can destroy people. They should be carefully weighed before they are spoken. Even truthful words can damage. Yet they can also save a friend from going wrong. Proverbs speaks strongly about both the danger of gossip - and the good done when someone justly rebukes his or her friend. “The tongue has the power of life and death.” Proverbs 18:21 says, “And those who love it will eat its fruit.” Proverbs teaches the skill of speaking so as to give life, hope, encouragement, and warning.
Proverbs 3:13 Blessed is the man who finds wisdom, the man who gains understanding,
14 for she is more profitable than silver and yields better returns than gold.
15 She is more precious than rubies; nothing you desire can compare with her.
16 Long life is in her right hand; in her left hand are riches and honor.
17 Her ways are pleasant ways, and all her paths are peace.
18 She is a tree of life to those who embrace her; those who lay hold of her will be blessed.
God has written the Bible in such a manner that requires faith in His nature of forgiveness and acceptance to advance. There are some hurdles that cannot be passed over unless a person is aware of that. We all are sinners, whether big sins or little, they are all signs of our sinful nature.
Romans 8:1 Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus,
2 because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death.
Col. 1: 22 But now he has reconciled you by Christ's physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation--
23 if you continue in your faith, established and firm, not moved from the hope held out in the gospel. This is the gospel that you heard and that has been proclaimed to every creature under heaven, and of which I, Paul, have become a servant.
WARNING AGAINST REJECTING WISDOM
Proverbs 1:23 If you had responded to my rebuke, I would have poured out my heart to you and made my thoughts known to you.
24 But since you rejected me when I called and no one gave heed when I stretched out my hand,
25 since you ignored all my advice and would not accept my rebuke,
26 I in turn will laugh at your disaster; I will mock when calamity overtakes you--
27 when calamity overtakes you like a storm, when disaster sweeps over you like a whirlwind, when distress and trouble overwhelm you.
28 "Then they will call to me but I will not answer; they will look for me but will not find me.
29 Since they hated knowledge and did not choose to fear the LORD,
30 since they would not accept my advice and spurned my rebuke,
31 they will eat the fruit of their ways and be filled with the fruit of their schemes.
32 For the waywardness of the simple will kill them, and the complacency of fools will destroy them;
but whoever listens to me will live in safety and be at ease, without fear of harm."
Anybody with a brain can find exceptions to Proverbs’s generalities. For instance, Proverbs 28:19 proclaims that “he who works his land will have abundant food, but the one who chases fantasies will have his fill of poverty.” Yet farmers who work hard go hungry in a drought, and dreamers win $10 million in a lottery.
Proverbs simply tells how life works. You can worry about the exceptions after you have learned the rule. Try to live by the exceptions and you court disaster.
The rule is that the godly, moral, hardworking, and wise will reap many rewards. Those who learn the practical and godly wisdom of Proverbs not only sleep better, they succeed and become able to help their family and friends. Fools and scoffers, though they appear successful, will eventually pay the cost of their lifestyle.
13:1 A wise son heeds his father's instruction, but a mocker does not listen to rebuke.
2 From the fruit of his lips a man enjoys good things, but the unfaithful have a craving for violence.
3 He who guards his lips guards his life, but he who speaks rashly will come to ruin.
4 The sluggard craves and gets nothing, but the desires of the diligent are fully satisfied.
5 The righteous hate what is false, but the wicked bring shame and disgrace.
6 Righteousness guards the man of integrity, but wickedness overthrows the sinner.
7 One man pretends to be rich, yet has nothing; another pretends to be poor, yet has great wealth.
8 A man's riches may ransom his life, but a poor man hears no threat.
9 The light of the righteous shines brightly, but the lamp of the wicked is snuffed out.
10 Pride only breeds quarrels, but wisdom is found in those who take advice.
11 Dishonest money dwindles away, but he who gathers money little by little makes it grow.
12 Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life.
13 He who scorns instruction will pay for it, but he who respects a command is rewarded.
14 The teaching of the wise is a fountain of life, turning a man from the snares of death.
15 Good understanding wins favor, but the way of the unfaithful is hard.
16 Every prudent man acts out of knowledge, but a fool exposes his folly.
17 A wicked messenger falls into trouble, but a trustworthy envoy brings healing.
18 He who ignores discipline comes to poverty and shame, but whoever heeds correction is honored.
19 A longing fulfilled is sweet to the soul, but fools detest turning from evil.
20 He who walks with the wise grows wise, but a companion of fools suffers harm.
21 Misfortune pursues the sinner, but prosperity is the reward of the righteous.
22 A good man leaves an inheritance for his children's children, but a sinner's wealth is stored up for the righteous.
23 A poor man's field may produce abundant food, but injustice sweeps it away.
24 He who spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is careful to discipline him.
25 The righteous eat to their hearts' content, but the stomach of the wicked goes hungry.
When Jesus Christ saves us, we come into God’s wonderful family of believers. His wonderful gifts are not cheap. He purchased our redemption through the suffering of shedding His blood on Calvary’s Cross. Wisdom comes through suffering as well. We must spend time and effort in acquiring it.
The choice is left up to us!