Because Wisdom Is Calling Us

Welcome to the Bible reading challenge check-in! It’s Friday! I have loved reading one chapter of Proverbs each day this week; how about you? Why are we reading Proverbs daily? I think we already have a general answer, even though we’re not even a fourth of the way through the book- because wisdom is calling us!

A Summary of Proverbs 1-9

Let’s summarize each chapter we’ve read so far.

Chapter 1

King Solomon wrote the book of Proverbs to his son and we quickly learn from chapter 1 that wisdom is his total focus. Many of you commented last week that wisdom actually calling out to us struck you in a fresh way. It’s not that wisdom hides from us; God wants us to have the wisdom from above. But we have to develop an ear for wisdom.

Chapter 2

When wisdom calls out to us, we have a choice. Listen and obey or hear and turn away. Solomon begins chapter 2 with several “if” statements. “If you receive my words… If you treasure my commandments…If you make your ear attentive to wisdom…” and the list continues. It’s clear that the choice is ours- if we choose to listen to wisdom. This chapter includes a warning on the influence of wicked people.

Chapter 3

If you ask my husband my favorite Bible verses, he will definitely tell you Proverbs 3:5&6. (Just to verify, I asked him while I was typing this. Guess what? I was right!)

Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.

I love these two verses so much because they remind me not to rely on my own comprehension skills. I can take comfort in the fact that God’s plan is always bigger and better than mine.

Do you feel that the focus of chapter 3 is on wisdom?

Chapter 4

Are we on repeat yet? Get wisdom! Solomon can’t seem to emphasize it enough. But this chapter covers a few of the things we are tempted to chase after other than wisdom. Solomon ends the chapter by making the same declaration my dad used to make as we walked through the wild wonderful woods of West Virginia. “Careful where you step.” (You’ll get that later.)

Chapter 5

With all the getting of wisdom, Solomon warns his son about the adulterous woman. “Don’t even go near her” is his essential warning, but instead “Rejoice with your wife.” I find it interesting that Solomon additionally warns his son that if he doesn’t do this, one day he will look back and say “I was such an idiot.” Ok, that might be my personal translation, but you have to think that the wisest man in the world also had a few things he learned the hard way. ie: 700 wives and 300 concubines later…

Chapter 6

Chapter 6 continues the warnings from chapter 5, but then the verses settle into a pattern of what most of us think of when we think of proverbs- short, pithy sayings that inspire us to focus on a topic and think about it. Wow, Solomon was so ahead of Twitter.

On a more serious note, this chapter is jam-packed and I took a ton of notes. Anyone else?

What was your favorite verse in chapter 6?

Chapter 7

A total warning on the ways of an adulterous woman, Solomon is serious in his explanation that his son is going to be tempted to listen to her. Not just listen to her, but then he will be tempted to follow her ways. One of my favorite statements in this chapter is: “Say to wisdom, ‘You are my sister,’ and call insight your intimate friend.”

Wisdom empowers us to walk away from temptation, rather than walk towards it.

Chapter 8

In a day when wealth, position and fame are continually pursued, chapter 8 was a reminder to me that those pursuits do not uphold their promises. The wisest(and most likely, the wealthiest) man who ever lived encouraged his son NOT to pursue silver or gold or jewels, but to seek wisdom with all that he had. My simple takeaway from this chapter was encouragement to continue reading Proverbs each day and faithfully, daily glean truths from God’s Word.

Chapter 9

Lessons are learned through repetition and Solomon’s repeated lessons on seeking wisdom and avoiding wicked is no accident in this chapter His purposeful advice to his son is reiterated with good reason- repetition is the key to learning. I feel that verse 10 summarizes the reading to this point:

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight.

And now I’d love to hear from you! For recap, here are the questions from above:

Do you feel that the focus of chapter 3 is on wisdom?

What was your favorite verse in chapter 6?

And one more you might choose to answer today for our check-in:

If you had to summarize what you learned this week through reading the book of Proverbs in three sentences or less, what would you say?

Can’t wait to hear from you! Happy Friday!

Rachel

Instructions for the 2015 Bible Reading Challenge are here.

wisdom is calling

 

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20 Comments

  1. Rachel, after this week of journaling and meditating on each chapter, I spent time this morning simply reading Proverbs 1 – 9 in its entirety as a book. It was beautiful to envision Wisdom and understanding with God in Creation. Jesus is Wisdom! And all the attributes of Wisdom are the attributes of God!
    I felt Proverbs 3 focused on the benefits of Wisdom. My journaled prayer read “Father, as I ponder Your Word, my heart awakens to trusting You… to be humble…to be selfless and not selfish.”
    My favorite verses in Proverbs 6 are v.22 & v.23 “When you walk, they will guide you; when you sleep, they will watch over you; when you awake, they will speak to you. For this command is a lamp, this teaching is a light, and correction and instruction are the way to life,…
    What a blessing this has been this very week. I have a lot going on and would not have been praying for wisdom and understanding in such a beautiful way! God bless!

  2. I believe chap 3 was on wisdom, but on seeking God’s wisdom. My favorite verse in chap 6 was about the ants. How they stored up things without being told. They knew they had to do it. Why do we need to be told so many times to seek God, memorize his word, or to study his word. God is amazing it should be within us to want to do all of these things without being told. I am enjoying going through the book of Proverbs. I’m learning knew things every time I read it. Thank you!

  3. (1) Do you feel that the focus of chapter 3 is on wisdom?
    Yes, but also on what I consider facts and good advice. i.e. vs 13 is a fact: “Blessed is the man who finds wisdom,” and good advice: “Honor the Lord…with the first fruits…” (vs 9).

    (2) What was your favorite verse in chapter 6?
    20b: “…and do not forsake your mother’s teaching.” It was very personal for me. My mother is in a nursing home and it was a heartfelt reminder of all she did for me in my life—as a child and as an adult.

    (3) To summarize what I learned:
    Call on wisdom, embrace it. God created wisdom “from the beginning, before the world began,” (8:23) so obviously God wants his children to live lives wisely and not foolishly. Be giving, be generous, be respectful, be wise and you will be blessed. Stay away from all that is evil because it will really mess up your life.

      1. Thanks so much. That really means a lot to me.

  4. my head knowledge was “yes, i know that i should seek wisdom”…my heart is telling me that i really do not do this on a daily basis. i am not asking for wisdom – i merely seek out God when I have a question…should be the other way around. i should be praying for wisdom initially, so that when questions/situations arise, i can be armed with God’s Word (perhaps even with what i have read and prayed about that day!).

  5. Charlotte says:

    Thank you, Rachael, for starting the year off in the book of Proverbs. What a great way to begin a New year by pursuing wisdom! Verses 5-6 of Proverbs 3 have long been some of my favorite verses too. I agree with the above posts that trusting God is what gives us understanding that develops into wisdom. In chap 6, the little ant taught me the importance of staying on task in the pursuit of reading God’s Word. I love how God uses something as small and seemingly insignificant as an ant to teach us people, who have a tendency to think of ourselves more highly than we ought.

    Another thing that stood out to me in these first 9 chapters is that even though Solomon was explicitly warning his son about staying away from the adulteress and not heeding her call, there could possibly be an application in that for women as well. There are many glitzy things in this world that call out to us trying to get us to compromise our relationships with The Lord. Wouldn’t that be like spiritual adultery? Isn’t there also a warning in these verses we “daughters” should heed?

  6. Proverbs 6:16-19 stuck out to me as reminders certainly of what NOT to do, because I struggle with what I see as “haughty eyes” with some people I deal with at work. My biggest take away, though was 5:6 “she does not ponder the path of life;
    her ways wander, and she does not know it”….regarding those same people I sometimes look down on. It reminds me that they need love compassion and support, not judgment (my greatest struggle) because they really don’t realize the path they are on, they may have never been exposed to God and therefore are trying to fill that hole with promiscuity and drugs because they just don’t know any better. That verse was really something I needed to be reminded of. I certainly welcome any input on my interpretation if someone understands this differently than me, I have prayed about this as well and I believe that is what I’m supposed to take from it at this particular time.

  7. I agree with many here that v23 in ch 6 was my favorite. The way of life is what stood out to me. This is why we spend so much time disciplining our children the way God would, so they’ll stay far from trouble and then recognize it when it comes later in life when we aren’t there to point it out to them.

    I’ve done a proverb chapter a day before. Each reading reinforces what I remember and yet I still learn new things. His Word is fresh every day.

  8. The focus of Chapter 3 is certainly wisdom and it’s benefits. My favorite verse in Chap.6 was: V.23 For these commands are a lamp, this teaching is a light and the corrections of discipline are the way to life.
    3 Sentence Summary: Wisdom came before all that is. Wisdom was there from the beginning; guiding. Seek wisdom and you will be in the way of the Lord.

  9. Rachel, thank you for the outline of the chapters – that was great!

    Question 1: Chapter 3, does focus on wisdom – because, in verses 5&6 Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and He will make your paths straight.
    When we realize, that we can not do this alone, and we seek Him out, then, we can say that we have gained knowledge. It’s not about us – it’s all about the LORD.
    Question 2: Favorite verse in chapter 6 would have to be verse 23: For this command is a lamp, this teaching is a light, and correction and instruction are the way to life, We should look closer at the life of an ant as well – they seem to have it together.
    To summaraize the week: SEEK the LORD; STUDY His Word; practice what you have learned and know that He is the one in control and as in verse 23 chapter 3 our paths will be straight.

    Reading and marking the chapters one day at a time has given a new insight as to what the chapters are all about.

    Keep reading everyone – God bless you each!

  10. Jodie Wilt says:

    Chapter 3 is about wisdom in the way of finding it in God. The verse that stands out in that chapter “Happy is the man that findeth wisdom and the man that geth understanding” v.13 that verse makes me feel very happy because I am deviling in His word and so glad I am getting understanding.

    My favorite verse in Ch. 6 is “for the commandment is a lamp and the law is light and re proofs of instruction are the way of life” v.23

    I have learned that seeking wisdom and understanding is only achieved by our walk with God.

  11. I see chapter 3 in two parts. The first part is God’s wisdom and how to get it. The second part as wisdom in dealing with people.

    The verse that stood out to me the most in chapter 6 was verse 30. I had recently heard a story of a grandmother that got caught stealing some eggs for her grandkids because she had no food. The officer that responded bought the eggs and food for her instead of arresting her.

    I would have to say that one of the main keys to wisdom is to stay close and follow God. When we stray from His way then we invite folly into our lives.

  12. I find Chapter 3 to focus on wisdom, but from the viewpoint of trust in God. I also think that Solomon is writing with a “positive” outlook, thinking about how it is good for us to have wisdom and trust in God.

    Proverbs 6:23 is probably my favorite verse – “For the commandment is a lamp and the teaching a light, and the reproofs of discipline are the way of life,” – While this is found in the section warning against adultery, I find it helpful to think on with other topics in mind, and think it applies well to these thoughts.

    Solomon definitely wants to teach how important seeking wisdom is, and because the book of Proverbs is included in the Bible, I believe that means God wants me to chase after wisdom. I was struck by the thought that, although Solomon is said to have gained his wisdom seemingly overnight, for me at least this is going to be a lifelong journey – Wisdom is gained through experience, failing, trying again, and always listening to God! The personal growth that happens through this process, not just the wisdom gained, will set me on the right path that God lays out for me! <– Exciting!

  13. Thank you so much Rachel for this opportunity! Really enjoying the pace of this reading challenge.

    I did feel that Chap. 3 was focused on wisdom, but more on God and our trust in Him as the source of wisdom.

    Chap. 6:23 was my favorite. I love the imagery of “…their commands are like a lamp. Their teaching is like a light…” And, as I get older, I am amazed at how the things my mom used to say come back to me, esp. in difficult situations.

    More than anything, I loved being reminded that wisdom is available and offered to all of us, even me, and that God is The Source and Giver of that wisdom.

    TGIF

  14. I totally get that Chapter 3 is on wisdom!

    One of the verses I highlighted in Chapter 6 is verse 20: “My son, keep your father’s command and do not forsake your mother’s teaching.

  15. For chapter 3 I wrote down, doing right has to come from the inside. Our heart displays whether or not we have mercy and truth. If we are depending on God, we won’t think too highly of ourselves or try to do things our way.
    I’ve always loved being compared to an ant in chapter 6. That really puts things in perspective!
    God knows our heart, and if we give it fully to him, he will supply all the wisdom, knowledge, and understanding we need to be safe, successful, and empowered in this world.

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