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

Sunday, May 20, 2012

The Proverbs 31 Project: Commenting May 20th on Proverbs 20: 11-14

[If you have been here before, in May, then you might want to skip down below the green for today's post.]

"Thirty days hath September, 
April, June and November
All the rest have 31
Except February which has 28
Except during leap year when it has 29"

NO I DID NOT WRITE THIS "POEM"!  (Talk about free verse!)

Why didn't somebody just point out that the four months that do NOT have 31 days (except February, and everyone knows all about February The Exceptional) come every other month except that there is no 30 day month between July and August?  The silly poem above mixes up the order just to hide the fact that the real 30 day months come in two orderly pairs: April/June and September/November.  Can somebody please write a non-silly poem for us that will make this clear, and stick in our minds, but without gooping them up with exceptions (and please just leave February out of it!)?

And to make matters (far) worse, MILLERWRITES has created a Proverbs Pull-A-Part Plan that decimates that fine collection of wisdom in the book of Proverbs, by spreading commentary on each chapter out over 7 months (the good 31 day months)!  Oh don't ask me to explain his system.  You can try to decipher what he said about it at the top of any P31P posts from January or March if you like, or just follow along this month and figure it out.
All Bible passages are from the NIV, and are copied here from

REMEMBER: My ideas may be oh so mesmerizing, but you will get more benefit from simply reading the chapter itself!

So here I offer my amateur comments on verses 11-14.  Today's inspired verses are in red, and my comments are neither       (neither inspired, nor red).


1 Wine is a mocker and beer a brawler;
whoever is led astray by them is not wise.

2 A king’s wrath strikes terror like the roar of a lion;
those who anger him forfeit their lives.

3 It is to one’s honor to avoid strife,
but every fool is quick to quarrel.

4 Sluggards do not plow in season;
so at harvest time they look but find nothing.

5 The purposes of a person’s heart are deep waters,
but one who has insight draws them out.

6 Many claim to have unfailing love,
but a faithful person who can find?

7 The righteous lead blameless lives;
blessed are their children after them.

8 When a king sits on his throne to judge,
he winnows out all evil with his eyes.

9 Who can say, “I have kept my heart pure;
I am clean and without sin”?

10 Differing weights and differing measures—
the Lord detests them both.

11 Even small children are known by their actions,
so is their conduct really pure and upright?

11) So even way back when, the urban myth that children are born innocent was widespread and needed to be refuted!  No.  Nobody ever has to teach their children to disobey, to be mean, to lie and steal.  Instead, we discover that even the cutest of Grandchildren have a self absorbed, "me-first" nature.  Discipline is vital to RE direct the natural impulses of human babies toward the good of others; to honor their parents, and to respect the rights and property of people besides themselves.  Look honestly at your kids (and Grandkids) and ask: "is their conduct really pure and upright?"

12 Ears that hear and eyes that see—
the Lord has made them both.

12) As long as we are asking questions today, ask the nearest evolutionary scientist; "When the eyes and ears were evolving, how did they know there would be sound waves to respond to, and light to gather?  How did they know they could connect with the brain whereby  meaning could be communicated and images formed?"  You and I are not as wise as Solomon, but we are simply smart enough to laugh out loud at the idea that these perfectly suited and intricate organs just happened to form by chance!

13 Do not love sleep or you will grow poor;
stay awake and you will have food to spare.

13) All right, Sol, but is it OK if I really really LIKE sleep?  Not gobs and gobs of sleep, but I do need 6 or 7 hours per night, with an 8 or 9 hour catch-up once a week.   In the spirit of the proverb, though, I am actually afraid of sleeping too much of my life away.  Like anything else, there must be the right balance attained.

14 “It’s no good, it’s no good!” says the buyer—
then goes off and boasts about the purchase.

14) I understand the need to haggle.  Both sides of any deal always seek their own benefit (just like the kids in verse 11 above!).  I can't even imagine the world of buying and selling without both sides hiding their cards and trying to outwit each other, can you?

15 Gold there is, and rubies in abundance,
but lips that speak knowledge are a rare jewel.

16 Take the garment of one who puts up security for a stranger;
hold it in pledge if it is done for an outsider.

17 Food gained by fraud tastes sweet,
but one ends up with a mouth full of gravel.

18 Plans are established by seeking advice;
so if you wage war, obtain guidance.

19 A gossip betrays a confidence;
so avoid anyone who talks too much.

20 If someone curses their father or mother,
their lamp will be snuffed out in pitch darkness.

21 An inheritance claimed too soon
will not be blessed at the end.

22 Do not say, “I’ll pay you back for this wrong!”
Wait for the Lord, and he will avenge you.

23 The Lord detests differing weights,
and dishonest scales do not please him.

24 A person’s steps are directed by the Lord.
How then can anyone understand their own way?

25 It is a trap to dedicate something rashly
and only later to consider one’s vows.

26 A wise king winnows out the wicked;
he drives the threshing wheel over them.

27 The human spirit is[a] the lamp of the Lord
that sheds light on one’s inmost being.

28 Love and faithfulness keep a king safe;
through love his throne is made secure.

29 The glory of young men is their strength,
gray hair the splendor of the old.

30 Blows and wounds scrub away evil,
and beatings purge the inmost being.

By the way...MILLERWRITES copy is COPYRIGHTED. Why cut and paste when you can simply copy the link?

1 comment:

  1. I'm hopping around the A-Z. Nice to meet you through the Challenge :) Hope to see you around!

    Roadtrip: On my way from A all the way to Z!
    English Speaking Zone


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