My Favorite Lessons From Proverbs

One of my favorite, if not the favorite, books of the Bible is the book of Proverbs.

Every morning as part of my daily ritual I read a chapter or two or more depending on their length, the amount of time I have available and how well my eyes are functioning without my glasses.

Over the past number of years I have done this ritual of reading the Bible from beginning to end.  I am currently on my fourth or fifth time of completely reading it cover to cover.

The one book that I always look forward to reading is Proverbs.

Nearly all the lines in the book of Proverbs were written by King Solomon.  Many have called him the wisest man in history.

I don’t know if you can make that claim about any one person but I do know that Proverbs is filled with a life time of wisdom.

As I read through Proverbs this time I decided to keep track of some of my favorite verses.  I thought I would put together and share a list of my top ten favorite proverbs.  But 10 favorites became 15 favorites became 20 favorites and so on.

When I was finally through the book of Proverbs I counted up the number of verses I had jotted down as my favorites.  It totaled 32.

Next I took the list of 32 and put them all together in one file.  As I was reviewing them I noticed a number of the proverbs were trying to convey or teach the same basic simple stupid piece of wisdom.  So next I categorized them into these basic lessons and guess how many lessons there were, ten.

So here are my top ten pieces of wisdom as conveyed to mankind by King Solomon in the book of Proverbs.

By the way all the text that is sited is taken from the English Standard Version of the Bible.  For me that’s the most simple stupid version.

  1. Seek peace and avoid anger.solomon and sheba

Eight of the 32 verses had this theme

12:25 Anxiety in a man’s heart weighs him down, but a good word makes him glad.

15:1 A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.

15:17 Better is a dinner of herbs where love is than a fattened ox and hatred with it.

16:32 Whoever is slow to anger is better than the mighty, and he who rules his spirit than he who takes a city.

17:1 Better is a dry morsel with quiet than a house full of feasting with strife.

17:14 The beginning of strife is like letting out water, so quit before the quarrel breaks out.

20:3 It is an honor for a man to keep aloof from strife, but every fool will be quarreling.

22:24 Make no friendship with a man given to anger, nor go with a wrathful man,

  1. Keep your mouth shut and save yourself a lot of trouble, in the process you might gain some wisdom. 087.King_Solomon_in_Old_Age(This will also tie into #3 below.)

13:3 Whoever guards his mouth preserves his life; he who opens wide his lips comes to ruin.

15:28 The heart of the righteous ponders how to answer, but the mouth of the wicked pours out evil things.

17:28 Even a fool who keeps silent is considered wise; when he closes his lips, he is deemed intelligent.

18:6  A fool’s lips walk into a fight, and his mouth invites a beating.

29:11 A fool gives full vent to his spirit, but a wise man quietly holds it back.

29:20 Do you see a man who is hasty in his words? There is more hope for a fool than for him.

 

  1. The importance of knowledge and wisdom – see above about keeping your mouth shut to gain this.

1:7 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction

15:14 The heart of him who has understanding seeks knowledge, but the mouths of fools feed on folly.

15:22 Without counsel plans fail, but with many advisers they succeed.

19:2 Desire without knowledge is not good, and whoever makes haste with his feet misses his way.

20:15 There is gold and abundance of costly stones, but the lips of knowledge are a precious jewel.

26:12 Do you see a man who is wise in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.

 

  1. A good woman is truly a gift from God.  When you find her, keep her and keep her happy.

nicolas-poussin-the-judgment-of-solomon (If momma ain’t happy ain’t nobody happy.)  By the way King Solomon supposedly had 700 wives and 300 concubines.  I guess he did a lot of searching.

19:14 House and wealth are inherited from fathers, but a prudent wife is from the LORD.

21:9 It is better to live in a corner of the housetop than in a house shared with a quarrelsome wife.

21:19 It is better to live in a desert land than with a quarrelsome and fretful woman.

25:24  It is better to live in a corner of the housetop than in a house shared with a quarrelsome wife.

 

  1. Respect the knowledge and wisdom of your elders.

Elders – Those of us who kept our mouths shut and learned something through the years.solomon

16:31 Gray hair is a crown of glory; it is gained in a righteous life.

20:19 The glory of young men is their strength, but the splendor of old men is their gray hair.

  1. The importance of hard work.

There’s a reason it’s hard.

14:23  In all toil there is profit, but mere talk tends only to poverty.

23:33-34 A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest, and poverty will come upon you like a robber, and want like an armed man.

 

  1. Be frugal and wise with your money.

Solomon was richer than rich but still understood it could all be lost if you are a fool.King-Solomon

22:7  The rich rules over the poor, and the borrower is the slave of the lender.

  1. Don’t over stay your welcome.

king-solomon (1)Have any zealot neighbors who don’t know when it’s time to leave.  Give them this verse.

25:17 Let your foot be seldom in your neighbor’s house, lest he have his fill of you and hate you.

 

  1. Lead by example.

Are you a task master or a leaderGezerSolTemple

29:19 By mere words a servant is not disciplined, for though he understands, he will not respond.

 

  1. Go after what you want in life.

Life is a gift.  Don’t be a fool, run your mouth and miss it.

13:12 Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a desire fulfilled is a tree of life.

Pretty good advice, all of it.

If you’ve never read The Book Of Proverbs take the time to do so.

It doesn’t matter who or what you believe in.

The book is full of universal wisdom and we can all use some of that.

© Otis P Smith and About the Groove, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Otis P Smith and About the Groove with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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