I’m doing a Wednesday night sermon series in the book of proverbs entitled, “Everyday Wisdom.” Here is the sermon for August 20th, 2008.
Everyday Wisdom Part 2
This is a modern saying that I guess we can call a proverb. It is, “There is a reason for everything.” Sometimes I don’t like this phrase. You see, I don’t like the speed limit on some roads. It seems that we should be going faster. I mean the road may be a nice road, nothing seems to be there, yet for some reason the speed limit is 50 MPH. Why is that? Well, I’m sure that there is a reason for it.
Have you ever thought about things like this? What is the reason behind whatever some rule is, or maybe behind some philosophy of something of that nature.
Well, tonight we are going to look at the reason behind the book of proverbs.
What we are going to learn is that all true wisdom and knowledge begins with fearing (having an awesome respect) for the Lord God.
What does the word, “proverb” mean? It means, “a word, speech, or discourse.” It includes the core idea of “comparison.” If you study Proverbs, you will see that there is a number of comparisons given. Understood broadly, the biblical proverb also includes riddles and word puzzles. Biblical and Eastern literature frequently use the proverb as a literary technique to make their writings enjoyable and memorable. People of all nations have found satisfaction and pleasure learning to solve riddles and other word problems.
Tonight, as we look at the first 7 verses of proverbs, Let us ask the Holy Spirit to speak to us and reveal His truths He chooses to reveal to us.
Now the first thing I want us to understand is that many consider the first 7 verses of Proverbs to actually be the complete title of the book. If this is true, then it is the longest titled book of the Bible.
What is the reason that the book of proverbs was written?
1. To give the reader insight.
Proverbs 1:1-2 ESV – The proverbs of Solomon, son of David, king of Israel: (2) To know wisdom and instruction, to understand words of insight…
A. First off, most of the proverbs are written by Solomon, but not necessarily all of them.
Some were sayings of Solomon that were added later. Some were written by Agur, and some by King Lemuel.
B. But we see from v. 2 the reason behind these collections of proverbs.
So that the reader can come to know wisdom and instruction, to understand words of insight. The kind of instruction that proverbs provides is just not knowledge for the sake of knowledge, but to give us know how. To give us things that we can use and apply to everyday living. There are many people in the world today that have great Bible knowledge, but they really don’t apply it to life. All the Bible knowledge in the world doesn’t mean anything if it isn’t applied to your life and lived.
C. Let’s look at the second reason that proverbs was written.
2. To give us a deep understanding in our dealings, understanding that fearing the Lord is the beginning of wisdom and knowledge.
Proverbs 1:3 ESV – to receive instruction in wise dealing, in righteousness, justice, and equity;
A. The kind of instruction that Proverbs gives is to give us discernment between what is good and what is evil.
Evil likes to dress itself up so that it doesn’t appear evil. Proverbs will help us see evil for what it is. It will uncover the truth that evil tries to hide.
Proverbs 1:5-7 ESV – Let the wise hear and increase in learning, and the one who understands obtain guidance, (6) to understand a proverb and a saying, the words of the wise and their riddles. (7) The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction.
B. In the riddles and words of wisdom found within this book of the Bible, there is one major theme.
To have reverential respect and fear of the Lord, His ways, and His word is just the beginning of the knowledge and instruction that the Lord has for you.
People on the other hand who have no respect for God, His ways, and His word are fools, and by their actions, they despise God.
3. The wisdom found in proverbs is not just for the intellectual, but for the common person, regardless of age.
Proverbs 1:4 ESV – to give prudence to the simple, knowledge and discretion to the youth—
A. What is prudence?
The dictionary definition is, “Caution with regard to practical matters; discretion. Regard for one’s own interests.” This means that within the pages of the book of proverbs are practical wisdom for everyday affairs. It teaches you ways to make the best decisions in daily affairs.
B. This prudence is given to the simple. What is the simple?
Literally in Hebrew this word means, “open-hearted, or open-minded.” These are minds that can be easily molded either for good or evil, depending on the main influence. To those who are open-minded and are truly seeking after the ways of God, God is going to teach them how to live correctly in everyday living.
C. He gives discretion to the youth.
Do the youth need discretion? Absolutely! Throughout history, the youth have always had difficulties in life. This is true of our time as well. Another word we can use for discretion is “common sense.” To the youth who seek after God and want to walk in His wise ways, He will give them a sense of what is right and wrong, a common sense that will not fail them.
This is just a short summation of the benefits found within the pages of the book of Proverbs.
Is there anything from tonight’s teaching that we can use in everyday life? Well yes there is. Remember, wisdom begins by how you view the Lord. Are you in awe of His love for you? Are you worshipfully bowing down before Him and do you have a great respect for His Word and His ways? If the answer is yes, then you are on the road to receiving everyday wisdom. I challenge you to study the book of Proverbs and just journal through it. Write down things that you know will help you in everyday life.
If we would just practice the wisdom that we would learn through this great book, then we can bring wisdom into a world that doesn’t truly have wisdom because they have no fear of God in their lives.