Proverbs 3

Those who have a continual regard to God’s precepts and put themselves under divine guidance by acknowledging God and praying in faith to Him, shall find health of soul, good habits of body and true success in life.

1 My son, forget not my law; but let thine heart keep my commandments:

2 For length of days, and long life, and peace, shall they add to thee.

3 Let not mercy and truth forsake thee: bind them about thy neck; write them upon the table of thine heart:

4 So shalt thou find favour and good understanding in the sight of God and man.

5 ¶ Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.

6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.

7 ¶ Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil.

8 It shall be health to thy navel, and marrow to thy bones.

9 Honour the LORD with thy substance, and with the firstfruits of all thine increase:

10 So shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst out with new wine.

11 ¶ My son, despise not the chastening of the LORD; neither be weary of his correction:

12 For whom the LORD loveth he correcteth; even as a father the son in whom he delighteth.

13 ¶ Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, and the man that getteth understanding.

14 For the merchandise of it is better than the merchandise of silver, and the gain thereof than fine gold.

15 She is more precious than rubies: and all the things thou canst desire are not to be compared unto her.

16 Length of days is in her right hand; and in her left hand riches and honour.

17 Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace.

18 She is a tree of life to them that lay hold upon her: and happy is every one that retaineth her.

19 The LORD by wisdom hath founded the earth; by understanding hath he established the heavens.

20 By his knowledge the depths are broken up, and the clouds drop down the dew.

21 ¶ My son, let not them depart from thine eyes: keep sound wisdom and discretion:

22 So shall they be life unto thy soul, and grace to thy neck.

23 Then shalt thou walk in thy way safely, and thy foot shall not stumble.

24 When thou liest down, thou shalt not be afraid: yea, thou shalt lie down, and thy sleep shall be sweet.

25 Be not afraid of sudden fear, neither of the desolation of the wicked, when it cometh.

26 For the LORD shall be thy confidence, and shall keep thy foot from being taken.

27 ¶ Withhold not good from them to whom it is due, when it is in the power of thine hand to do it.

28 Say not unto thy neighbour, Go, and come again, and to morrow I will give; when thou hast it by thee.

29 Devise not evil against thy neighbour, seeing he dwelleth securely by thee.

30 ¶ Strive not with a man without cause, if he have done thee no harm.

31 ¶ Envy thou not the oppressor, and choose none of his ways.

32 For the froward is abomination to the LORD: but his secret is with the righteous.

33 ¶ The curse of the LORD is in the house of the wicked: but he blesseth the habitation of the just.

34 Surely he scorneth the scorners: but he giveth grace unto the lowly.

35 The wise shall inherit glory: but shame shall be the promotion of fools.

Proverbs 3:1-12 – The Results of Trusting Jehovah

   How replete with helpful instruction on the policy of life is this paragraph! The young of both sexes are invited to be merciful in their judgments or dealings, and faithful in the discharge of their responsibilities or duties. These are two prime qualifications for a right attitude toward God and man.
   The perplexed are bidden to distrust their own understanding and to trust in God for guidance. If you do not see your way, wait till God reveals it. Notice the repeated word allall thine heart, all thy ways. A thread reaching from our person to the ground may impair our perfect insularity. The business man is urged to honor God, as Abraham did, when returning laden with booty from his conflict with the freebooting kings, Genesis 14:23. The suffering are urged to look beyond their pain and sorrow to the hand that chastens, Proverbs 3:11-12. These precious words are endorsed by later Scriptures. See Hebrews 12:5-6 and Revelation 3:19. We can never forget the tender assurance of Job 5:18-19. There is no chance in life; accept all as by God’s appointment or permission. —Through the Bible Day by Day

Proverbs 3:6—He shall direct thy paths.

​   Thy paths! Then, every man’s path is distinct for him, and for no other. The paths may lie side by side, but they are different. They have converged; they may diverge. When Peter had been told of the rugged nature of the predestined path which was marked out for him in the Providence of God, he turned towards John, his companion and friend, and said to Jesus (John 21:21-22), “What shall this man do?” The Lord instantly replied, in effect: “That is a matter in which I can brook no interference; it is entirely a matter for my choice and will; if I will, it may be that he shall tarry till I come.”
   We need to be divinely directed.—The man who stands above the maze can direct you through all its labyrinth by the readiest path. God who made thee for thy life, and thy life for thee, can direct thee, and He only.
   First: Lean not to thine own understanding.—One is apt to pride oneself on one’s far-sighted judgment. We consult our maps and guides and the opinions of fellow-travelers, to find ourselves at fault. We have to learn that our own understanding is not keen enough or wise enough to direct; we must abjure and renounce all dependence on it.
   Second: In all thy ways acknowledge Him.—Let thine eye be single; thy one aim to please Him; thy sole motive, his glory. It is marvelous how certainly and delightfully our way opens before us when we no longer look down on it, or around at others, but simply upwards into the face of Christ. “It is a universal law, unalterable as the nature of God, that no created being can be truly holy, useful, or happy, who is knowingly and deliberately out of the Divine fellowship, for a single moment.” —Our Daily Homily

Proverbs 3:6 – An artist painted a picture of a little child in the dress of a pilgrim. He is walking slowly along a narrow path. This path has on each side of it a dreadful precipice. The edges of these precipices are hidden from view by means of beautiful flowers that are growing there. Behind the child is an angel. His face is full of tenderness and love. His hands are resting lightly on the shoulders of the child, to keep him in the centre of the path. The child has closed his eyes, that the sight of the flowers may not tempt him into danger. He is walking carefully along, feeling, and yielding to the gentle touch of the angel that is leading him. He acknowledges the angel by following his touch, and while he does this the angel “directs his paths.” (R. Newton)

Proverbs 3:6 – In all thy ways. In they worship. In thy study of His word. In thy intercourse with His people. In thy traffic with the world. In thy business and in thy recreation. At thy meals. In thy correspondence. In thy reading. In thy dress. What! In all these petty matters? Yes! In all thy ways. Thinkest thou that God will have no word for thee on such topics? Be undeceived. Thou shalt find a revelation of the will of God for every one of thy paths. There is no need for thee to ever let go His hand. Not a single hair of thy head receives its aliment without Him. Why then should a single step be taken without Him? (Bowen)

Proverbs 3:13-26 – ​Wisdom’s Ways of Pleasantness

   Wisdom is susceptible of cultivation. It is a mine that needs to be worked with patient toil. Compare Proverbs 3:13-15 with Job 28:18. It is comparable to a noble woman, who approaches us with full-handed beneficence, Proverbs 3:16-17. It may be described as a tree, requiring careful tendance and bearing fruit for the patient cultivator, Proverbs 3:18. And we may turn from our own little lives to see the mighty results of divine wisdom in Creation and Providence. We are made in the image of God, our minds are able to appreciateHis mind, and we think over again, as Kepler said, the thoughts of God, Proverbs 3:19-20.
   Learn the security of the life which is built on the eternal principles of this book. It has no fear. Its repose is unbroken by alarm. It is at peace with itself, with man, and with God. This is not the result of our calculating prudence, but because we exercise ourselves to have consciences void of offense toward God and man; and because the God of patience, of hope, and of peace is with us. See Romans 15:5, 13, 33. —Through the Bible Day by Day

Proverbs 3:14 – Capital is not what a man has, but what he is. Character is capital; honor is capital. (MacDuff)

Proverbs 3:26 – Though the mariner sees not the pole-star, yet the needle of the compass which points to it tells him which way he sails; thus the heart that is touched with the loadstone of divine love, trembling with godly fear, and yet still looking toward God by fixed believing, interprets the fear by the love in the fear, and tells the soul that its course is heavenward, toward the haven of eternal rest. (Leighton)

Proverbs 3:27-35 – ​The Counsels of Experience.

   Here are many duties! Be generous! Of course we must discriminate–to whom it is due; and we must be prudent–when it is in the power of thine hand, Proverbs 3:27. Moreover, be prompt, Proverbs 3:28. Don’t stir up strife or take a mean advantage, Proverbs 3:29-30. In the presence of the prosperity of the violent and evil man, repress envy and recall Psalm 37.
   The word secret in Proverbs 3:32. See Psalm 25:14. Remember that Jesus calls us into this sacred inner circle, John 15:15. Count on God blessing your home-life, Proverbs 3:33. Be lowly and claim your great inheritance, Proverbs 3:34-35. See Matthew 5:3. —Through the Bible Day by Day