1A man who isolates himself seeks his own desire;
He rages against all wise judgment.
2 A fool has no delight in understanding,
But in expressing his own heart.
3 When the wicked comes, contempt comes also;
And with dishonor comes reproach.
4 The words of a man’s mouth are deep waters;
The wellspring of wisdom is a flowing brook.
5 It is not good to show partiality to the wicked,
Or to overthrow the righteous in judgment.
6 A fool’s lips enter into contention,
And his mouth calls for blows.
7 A fool’s mouth is his destruction,
And his lips are the snare of his soul.
8 The words of a talebearer are like tasty trifles,[a]
And they go down into the inmost body.
9 He who is slothful in his work
Is a brother to him who is a great destroyer.
10 The name of the Lord is a strong tower;
The righteous run to it and are safe.
11 The rich man’s wealth is his strong city,
And like a high wall in his own esteem.
12 Before destruction the heart of a man is haughty,
And before honor is humility.
13 He who answers a matter before he hears it,
It is folly and shame to him.
14 The spirit of a man will sustain him in sickness,
But who can bear a broken spirit?
15 The heart of the prudent acquires knowledge,
And the ear of the wise seeks knowledge.
16 A man’s gift makes room for him,
And brings him before great men.
17 The first one to plead his cause seems right,
Until his neighbor comes and examines him.
18 Casting lots causes contentions to cease,
And keeps the mighty apart.
19 A brother offended is harder to win than a strong city,
And contentions are like the bars of a castle.
20 A man’s stomach shall be satisfied from the fruit of his mouth;
From the produce of his lips he shall be filled.
21 Death and life are in the power of the tongue,
And those who love it will eat its fruit.
22 He who finds a wife finds a good thing,
And obtains favor from the Lord.
23 The poor man uses entreaties,
But the rich answers roughly.
24 A man who has friends must himself be friendly,[b]
But there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.
‘My take home’ from Proverbs 18
Seek knowledge. I should keep learning and never feel that I have arrived because as long as I live there is something I can learn. Growth is a deliberate choice on my side, I have to spend my resources and read books, listen to great teachers, attend conferences etc. but whatever I do I have to keep on the journey of learning.
A combination of hard work and gifting. I have to work hard knowing that this is God’s way of blessing me. I should remember that work is not a curse as some view it, because God asked Adam to work the garden way before the curse. In addition to hard work is utilizing my gifts or talents because with no hard work the gift’s effect diminishes (think of it as practicing for the athlete or musician). God’s promise is that my gift will open doors for me. I have seen glimpse of this in my already.
I need to continuously find ways of keeping my spirit alive. I have been in a place where my spirit has been broken and it is not a good place. I felt stuck and was vulnerable to all the lies the enemy threw my way. So for me this is very crucial – I have to continuously ‘protect’ my spirit and keep it alive because it’s what keeps me alive. I know it is a catch 22 but well I must figure it out. The most consistent way to keep it alive is to keep in the truth of who I am and whose I am.
The tongue is life and death. Woooohhh, I think this is deeper than we can ever comprehend. This also contributes to a man’s spirit being alive or dead. I will keep proclaiming life in whatever situation I am in. It is difficult because it goes against the status quo but this here is about life and death, maybe if I view as ‘life and death’ I will be more deliberate in what I speak in/to my life and that of others.
And that folks were my highlights from my reading today. What are your highlights from Proverbs 18? Share and we learn together.