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

Saturday, March 24, 2012

The Proverbs 31 Project: Commenting March 24th on Proverbs 24:5-9

                                      March 24th?     Read Proverbs 24!

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

Have you ever noticed that, as most months have 31 days, so the Book of Proverbs has 31 chapters? Fascinating right? Well, it is at least interesting, and coincidentally beneficial to those who would like to read a portion of thought provoking scripture every day of the month. You might like to read the calendar coordinated chapter from Proverbs every day this month (I've included the whole chapter below!) and then see if my comments on a few of those verses line up with your own observations. My plan is to go through the year, writing my response to about one seventh of each chapter's verses every day, during each of the 7 months that have 31 days.  Clear as mud? That's what I thought.

I hope you check in, and leave a comment. Especially if I say something really off base and need to be corrected, because, as we will learn this month on the 27th, Proverbs 27:5 says

                                "Better is open rebuke than hidden love." 

                                          Today's inspired verses, 5-9, are highlighted in red
                                                (and my questionable comments are in blue).

Proverbs 24

Saying 20

1 Do not envy the wicked,
do not desire their company;
2 for their hearts plot violence,
and their lips talk about making trouble.

Saying 21

3 By wisdom a house is built,
and through understanding it is established;
4 through knowledge its rooms are filled
with rare and beautiful treasures.

So yesterday we looked at Sayings 9 and 10 and today we are at 22-24.  Are we having fun yet?  I hope you are reading the whole chapter each day.  After all; don't you watch the WHOLE of even the dumbest TV shows?  I know I do.  I hate to miss any aspect of whatever I'm doing.

Saying 22

5 The wise prevail through great power,
and those who have knowledge muster their strength.

5) Is he saying that wisdom itself IS a great power?  That gaining knowledge is gaining strength?  Sounds like a public service announcement from the '70s;  Knowledge is Power--Don't drop out Knucklehead!

Or is he saying that a wise people are careful to have a strong national defense?  That they will study war and develop scientifically advanced weapons?

I don't know, but both ideas are true, so we'll go with the all inclusive answer: Both.

6 Surely you need guidance to wage war,
and victory is won through many advisers.

6) I was right!  Both suggestions are supported here.

Saying 23

7 Wisdom is too high for fools;
in the assembly at the gate they must not open their mouths.

7) Mark Twain turned this bit of sober counsel into a fun idiom:  It is better to keep your mouth closed and let people think you are a fool than to open it and remove all doubt.-- Mark Twain

Saying 24

8 Whoever plots evil
will be known as a schemer.

8)  Pity the poor victim who had to suffer while the reputation of the schemer was being established!  

9 The schemes of folly are sin,
and people detest a mocker.

9) I am invariably impressed, when I read the Bible, with the fact that people have always been, and will always be, the same.  Easy truisms like vs 9 are so easily recognized by us, even here in 21st century America, and they ring equally true in every culture everywhere.  Skin colors vary, ethnic habits differ crazily, and even where widely oriented religions exist...people detest a mocker!

Saying 25

10 If you falter in a time of trouble,
how small is your strength!
11 Rescue those being led away to death;
hold back those staggering toward slaughter.
12 If you say, “But we knew nothing about this,”
does not he who weighs the heart perceive it?
Does not he who guards your life know it?
Will he not repay everyone according to what they have done?

Saying 26

13 Eat honey, my son, for it is good;
honey from the comb is sweet to your taste.
14 Know also that wisdom is like honey for you:
If you find it, there is a future hope for you,
and your hope will not be cut off.

Saying 27

15 Do not lurk like a thief near the house of the righteous,
do not plunder their dwelling place;
16 for though the righteous fall seven times, they rise again,
but the wicked stumble when calamity strikes.

Saying 28

17 Do not gloat when your enemy falls;
when they stumble, do not let your heart rejoice,
18 or the LORD will see and disapprove
and turn his wrath away from them.

Saying 29

19 Do not fret because of evildoers
or be envious of the wicked,
20 for the evildoer has no future hope,
and the lamp of the wicked will be snuffed out.

Saying 30

21 Fear the LORD and the king, my son,
and do not join with rebellious officials,
22 for those two will send sudden destruction on them,
and who knows what calamities they can bring?
Further Sayings of the Wise 23 These also are sayings of the wise:

To show partiality in judging is not good:
24 Whoever says to the guilty, “You are innocent,”
will be cursed by peoples and denounced by nations.
25 But it will go well with those who convict the guilty,
and rich blessing will come on them.

26 An honest answer
is like a kiss on the lips.

27 Put your outdoor work in order
and get your fields ready;
after that, build your house.

28 Do not testify against your neighbor without cause—
would you use your lips to mislead?
29 Do not say, “I’ll do to them as they have done to me;
I’ll pay them back for what they did.”

30 I went past the field of a sluggard,
past the vineyard of someone who has no sense;
31 thorns had come up everywhere,
the ground was covered with weeds,
and the stone wall was in ruins.
32 I applied my heart to what I observed
and learned a lesson from what I saw:
33 A little sleep, a little slumber,
a little folding of the hands to rest—
34 and poverty will come on you like a thief
and scarcity like an armed man.


  1. Mike, I love what you are doing with your blog on Proverbs. I do try to read every new installment but can't always find time to comment. Sometimes there is so much to think about, or at least I want to think about/reflect about before being able to even make a comment.

    Thanks for the time you take to write, reflect, and share with us God's Word. You help to make it come alive for me and thus it is the Living Word not just the Old Testament (i think you get what I am saying although I am feeling that I am not expressing what I want to say).

    1. Thank you so much James, for the great encouragement! I know what you're saying; the OT gets a bad rap, but that's a shame. We heard in church today even about a LEFT HANDED guy who was a hero to Israel, in Judges 3 I believe it was. Imagine that. A LEFT HANDED great guy!


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