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

Friday, March 30, 2012

The Proverbs 31 Project: Commenting March 30th on Proverbs 30:5-9

                   March 30th?     Read Proverbs 30!

[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 30

Sayings of Agur

1 The sayings of Agur son of Jakeh—an inspired utterance.
   This man’s utterance to Ithiel:
   “I am weary, God,
but I can prevail.[a]
2 Surely I am only a brute, not a man;
I do not have human understanding.
3 I have not learned wisdom,
nor have I attained to the knowledge of the Holy One.
4 Who has gone up to heaven and come down?
Whose hands have gathered up the wind?
Who has wrapped up the waters in a cloak?
Who has established all the ends of the earth?
What is his name, and what is the name of his son?
Surely you know!

5 “Every word of God is flawless;
he is a shield to those who take refuge in him.

5) Can you imagine there being a 'god' who might say a flawed word now and again?  What kind of god would that be?  A flawed god (which is an oxymoron).  Of course, by definition, God's word (every one that He speaks) IS flawless!  We can count on His word to be not only accurate and profound, but right.

Did you catch what is intimated by 5b?  Why do we need the comfort of seeing God as a 'shield'?  Because there is something attacking us people, and guess what; we have seen the enemy and the enemy is US!  Our own sin nature threatens to undo us, and would, if we did not have a SHIELD provided for our protection.

6 Do not add to his words,
or he will rebuke you and prove you a liar.

6) I think that means that God has said everything that needs saying.  If our adding to it makes us a liar, then adding to it would require something He said to change toward the untruthful.  Relax.  Everything you really need to know from God has been revealed by God!

7 “Two things I ask of you, LORD;
do not refuse me before I die:

7) Thankfully, we are loved enough by God that He lets us talk to Him like Agur does here:  Boldly!

8 Keep falsehood and lies far from me;
give me neither poverty nor riches,
but give me only my daily bread.

8) Watch for the dreaded 'falsehood and lies' in the rest of 8 and 9.  (Do you recognize part of the Lord's Prayer here, by the way?)

9 Otherwise, I may have too much and disown you
and say, ‘Who is the LORD?’ 
Or I may become poor and steal,
and so dishonor the name of my God.

The sad results of having too little AND too much, bear the same corrupt fruit!  Disowning the Lord (as in dismissing His relevance), may be more of an apple than the metaphorical ripe orange of dishonoring His name, but both are from dying trees planted in the decayed soil of falsehood, and lies.

10 “Do not slander a servant to their master,
or they will curse you, and you will pay for it.

11 “There are those who curse their fathers
and do not bless their mothers;
12 those who are pure in their own eyes
and yet are not cleansed of their filth;
13 those whose eyes are ever so haughty,
whose glances are so disdainful;
14 those whose teeth are swords
and whose jaws are set with knives
to devour the poor from the earth
and the needy from among mankind.

15 “The leech has two daughters.
‘Give! Give!’ they cry.

“There are three things that are never satisfied,
four that never say, ‘Enough!’:
16 the grave, the barren womb,
land, which is never satisfied with water,
and fire, which never says, ‘Enough!’

17 “The eye that mocks a father,
that scorns an aged mother,
will be pecked out by the ravens of the valley,
will be eaten by the vultures.

18 “There are three things that are too amazing for me,
four that I do not understand:
19 the way of an eagle in the sky,
the way of a snake on a rock,
the way of a ship on the high seas,
and the way of a man with a young woman.

20 “This is the way of an adulterous woman:
She eats and wipes her mouth
and says, ‘I’ve done nothing wrong.’

21 “Under three things the earth trembles,
under four it cannot bear up:
22 a servant who becomes king,
a godless fool who gets plenty to eat,
23 a contemptible woman who gets married,
and a servant who displaces her mistress.

24 “Four things on earth are small,
yet they are extremely wise:
25 Ants are creatures of little strength,
yet they store up their food in the summer;
26 hyraxes are creatures of little power,
yet they make their home in the crags;
27 locusts have no king,
yet they advance together in ranks;
28 a lizard can be caught with the hand,
yet it is found in kings’ palaces.

29 “There are three things that are stately in their stride,
four that move with stately bearing:
30 a lion, mighty among beasts,
who retreats before nothing;
31 a strutting rooster, a he-goat,
and a king secure against revolt.[b]

32 “If you play the fool and exalt yourself,
or if you plan evil,
clap your hand over your mouth!
33 For as churning cream produces butter,
and as twisting the nose produces blood,
so stirring up anger produces strife.”
Proverbs 30:1 With a different word division of the Hebrew; Masoretic Text utterance to Ithiel, / to Ithiel and Ukal:
Proverbs 30:31 The meaning of the Hebrew for this phrase is uncertain.

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