The 'BARKING OWL' always has something to say, and like the feathered version, can be either WISE...............or ANNOYING!

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The Proverbs 31 Project: Commenting January 31st on Proverbs 31:1-5

January 31;  Proverbs 31  Verses 1-5

[Please note: The first two paragraphs below are repeated each day for new readers.  My amateur comments are offered below the verses from Proverbs.]

Christians looking for a simple way to review the Bible regularly, have long been convenienced by the fact that the book of Proverbs has 31 chapters, the same number as most of our months.  Each chapter includes multiple bite-sized verses (uhm, proverbs) and can be read through simply in one sitting, one appropriately numbered chapter per day through the month.  A person might read through the Proverbs a chapter a day during any month, but why mess with your head (reading an extra chapter on one, two, or three days!) like that when there are 7 months every year perfectly suited for the endeavor?

My idea here is to reprint about 1/7 of the verses from each day's chapter throughout this year, every time a 31 day month pops up, and then offer a few comments from The Barking Owl.  So in January, we will get through the first few verses of every chapter and then in March, the next group, and so on, until December comes around and we can finally get to the last set of verses in each chapter and complete the book's reading.  If you are smarter than I am (is there any doubt?), you will read the whole chapter every day, every 31 day month, and then you will have read the whole book 7 times this year!  By then you are guaranteed to at least be wiser than The Barking Owl , though no one will ever match the wisdom of Solomon!

[All Bible passages are from the NIV, and are copied from]

Proverbs 31

Sooooo....Perhaps you are one who googled "Proverbs 31" because you wanted to review thoughts and information on that most famous and controversial chapter, and thought you hit the jackpot when you found something called "The Proverbs 31 Project"!  (Well you did, but in a different sense.)  Now you know that this project is about all 31 chapters of Proverbs, and you can rejoice for I have finally arrived at the famed chapter which celebrates, for the most part, the godly wife.  But now your roller coaster takes a another dive, because that section doesn't start until verse 10, and I won't be getting there until May 31st!  Then again, you don't need me.  Please read the whole chapter, and just think about it today; 

1 The sayings of King Lemuel--an inspired utterance his mother taught him.

1) Not every motherly utterance is inspired, but that is the claim made here regarding  King Lemuel's mother and her words of wisdom.

2 Listen, my son!  Listen, son of my womb!
   Listen, my son, the answer to my prayers!

2) All the "listen, listen"s might turn a kid off, but that last part:  To be called an "answer to my prayers" would get my attention!

3 Do not spend your strength on women,
   your vigor on those who ruin kings.

3) I guess he wasn't a boy, but a young man, when he received this advice.  A hard word, but true.  What does a young man want more than a girlfriend?  And what can drain him of all he has, and is, and might become, more than a girlfriend?  A man needs to be strong his whole life through.  But his whole manly ability is not gained and established at puberty!  Much more importantly than the appearance of new hormones, is the growth, development and maturation of his character.  Not to mention a few other issues like wisdom, real (not sophomoric) humor, fiscal knowledge and responsibility etc etc.  Only with patience as the right number of years pass, will a young man come to find that his strength can actually handle all of his own duties, AND manage to support all the details and  delights of the woman he loves.

4 It is not for kings, Lemuel--
   it is not for kings to drink wine,
   not for rulers to crave beer,

4) I talked about my limited experience with the "spirits" of wine and beer back on Jan 20, so today I will just look at that last line; "not for rulers to crave beer".  It would seem that the real point of the verse is that rulers must live by a different standard.  In all the old movies, the merry old Kings of Old England are swilling wine from giant gold goblets and spilling it all over themselves to boot.  They are usually in some tirade or another over the latest rascal to upset the status quo, and make some great declaration about killing the miscreant.  It never works, because the rapscallions are always smarter than the king and a better fighter than all 150 of the king's guards, and there's always the perfect rope tied up at the top of the stairs so he can swing over the hall and drop the chandelier on the troops below.  In reality, Solomon warns, the reason such a king would fail to protect his kingdom's ideals from someone outside the order of government, is that he is too darn drunk to pay attention to his work!

Our president, we are told, is never more than 10 or 20 feet from the "nuclear football", a briefcase of data and equipment which would enable the president to order an appropriate nuclear attack in an emergency.  But what if the commander in chief was more than two or three drinks out of his senses when the crisis arose?  Not good.  For any leader distracted from his serious obligations, becomes a direct assault on the freedoms of the people.

5 lest they drink and forget what has been decreed,
   and deprive all the oppressed of their rights.

5) I like this verse for its incidental defining of an authority's role.  And it even hearkens forward to our Declaration of Independence by suggesting that the people already have rights.  It is simply the government's duty to "secure" them, not to "endow" them, as God has already done.

1 comment:

I can't wait to see your response so, unless you can leave a pizza, please leave the next best thing; your comment!