Let’s turn now to Proverbs, chapter ten. Chapter ten begins with the phrase…
The proverbs of Solomon (10:1).
Now this is how chapter one begins. However, in chapter one it is an introduction to the book of the Proverbs of Solomon. We really don’t get into many proverbs until we get to chapter ten. In chapter one he gives us the purpose for proverbs. Proverbs are intended to give instruction, to bring you wisdom and understanding. Then Solomon encourages us to get understanding, to seek to be instructed. He extols wisdom in the next several chapters, and how important it is, and what wisdom will do for you. Having laid out this whole dissertation on the value and the importance of wisdom, now we begin the actual proverbs.
So, beginning with chapter ten each verse is a proverb. In these proverbs he is usually making contrast. So you want to look for the contrast. For instance the very first one…
A wise son makes a glad father (10:1):
How true that is that fathers are proud of their sons when they display wisdom. You feel like you’ve accomplished your purpose as a father, when your son is wise. “He makes a glad father.”
but a foolish son [Contrast] is the heaviness of his mother (10:1).
Looking upon that foolish son, her heart becomes heavy at his foolishness. How true that is. We recently had a dear saint of the Lord, here at the church, really was destroyed by her foolish son. She died recently and I believe that her death is directly attributable to the heaviness that her son brought upon her heart.
Treasures of wickedness profit nothing (10:2):
If you have gained by wickedness, then you’re apt to lose also by wickedness. Several years ago, we had a member of the Mafia who was coming to the church for awhile. For some reason he sort of took a liking to me. He was an interesting fellow. He invited me over to his house one day, he had some things he wanted to just sort of open up, and share from his heart. He went over to his little safe, and he got out a wad of cash. Big roll of hundred dollar bills. He said, “See this?”, he said, “I just ripped this off from a guy”. About a hundred thousand dollars. And he said, “But they all know now that I have it”, and he said, “So they’re all working on me, and everyone’s got a scam, and they’re seeking to rip me off”, and he said, “I’m gonna buy one of them”, he said, “They’ll come along, and I’ll be a sucker and I’ll buy it!”. “Then the other guy, he’ll have this for awhile. But we’ll all know who has it, so we’ll all work scams on him!” He said, “This money just passes between us, you know. It just goes”, “where we rip off each other, and we have scams”, and he said, “So, I’m the guy right now. They’re all beating on my door trying to rip me off with some scheme”, and all. He said, “It’s just something that you hold for awhile, but then it goes”. That’s basically what the, “the treasures of wickedness profit nothing”. You know, it’s gonna pass on.
but righteousness delivereth from death (10:2).
Now, I want you to notice that as he talks about righteousness, and he will in many of the Proverbs. Righteousness becomes a part of the subject, and it’s always contrasted with wickedness, or, and here it is with wickedness, wickedness profits, uh, the profit of wickedness is nothing, or profits nothing. “Treasures of wickedness.” “But righteousness”, so the contrast between wicked and righteousness. But so often, as he brings up the subject of righteousness, he will relate righteousness to life, and that is to eternal life, to spiritual life. “So righteousness delivereth from death.” So it is that delivering from death, which of course is life. Again, contrasting righteous and wicked.
The Lord will not allow the soul of the righteous to famish (10:3):
If you are living a righteous life, God is gonna take care of you. Jesus said, “Consider the lilies of the field how they grow. They toil not, neither do they spin, make yarn out of cotton”, or whatever. “Yet Solomon in all of his glory was not arrayed like one of these, as beautiful as one of these. Consider the birds of the air, they don’t sow seeds, and gather into barns, and harvest their crops, plow the fields, yet your Father feeds them. Now if your Father will so clothe the grass of the field, which today is there, and tomorrow is gone, if your Father feeds the birds, how much more will He take care of you, His child? Therefore don’t worry about tomorrow, what you’re gonna eat, what you’re gonna drink, what you’re gonna wear. Because your Father knows that you have need of these things.” So, The Lord will not allow the righteous to famish”, He’ll take care of them. “He’ll not suffer the soul of the righteous to famish.”
but he will cast away the substance of the wicked (10:3).
So righteousness and wickedness again contrasted. Now, we have a contrast between laziness and diligence.
He becomes poor that deals with a slack hand (10:4):
If you are slack in your business, if you’re slack in your duties, tends towards poverty. But, in contrast…
the hand of the diligent maketh rich (10:4).
So you get your interesting contrast. Continuing with sort of that laziness and diligence…
He that gathers in summer is a wise son (10:5):
That is, you take advantage of the harvest. You’re working out, and you’re harvesting the crops.
but he that sleeps in the harvest is a son that causes shame. Blessings are on the head of the just (10:5-6):
So now the just or the righteous, in compared to the wicked, and contrasted. “Blessings are on the head of the just.” God’s blessings on your life if you are just, blessings of God.
but violence covers the mouth of the wicked. [Again justice, or the just and the wicked.] The memory of the just is blessed (10:6-7).
So blessings are on the head of the just, and the memory of the just are blessed. You think of a person who is fair and honest, you say, “Ah that fellow! He was so fair. He always (did what was fair)”, and the memories of those people are, are blessed! You remember those kind of things about people.
But the name of the wicked will rot (10:7).
You say, “That guy was so rotten! Through and through. Good he’s dead!” The wise is contrasted with the fool.
The wise in heart will receive commandments: [You’ll receive instruction, you’ll listen.] but a prating fool shall fall (10:8).
“I know it! Leave me alone. I know what I’m doing, just leave me alone!” Wise in heart, you’ll take instructions. Say, “Well thank you, appreciate that”.
He that walketh uprightly [and this is the contrast, the one who walks uprightly] he walks surely: [If you walk uprightly, you don’t have to worry.] but he that perverteth his ways [in contrast with walking uprightly, you pervert your ways, “he that perverteth his ways”,] shall be known. Then this one is not a contrast, it’s just sort of amplifying the first clause, the first clause.] He that winketh with the eye sorrow: but a prating fool shall fall (10:9-10).
That guy who is you know, so false, and going around and just snowing everybody. You know, comes on strong.
The mouth of the righteous [And of course the righteous and wicked contrasted, “the mouth of the righteous”,] man is a well of life (10:11):
You notice, “life”, again, associated with righteousness. “The mouth of the righteous is a well of life.” The things that they speak tend towards life.
but violence covers the mouth of the wicked (10:11).
Have you ever heard some people whose conversations are sort of like an open sewer? I mean there’s nothing but filth that comes out? I was working one time at Alpha Beta markets and I was sent over to a store here, in Santa Ana. I used to work for the Alpha Beta markets as sort of a, oh a uh, fill in manager. Whenever a manager would be sick, or going to conventions or whatever, they’d call me to operate the stores. I was over in Santa Ana, operating the store that used to be over here on Bristol, and there was a young fellow that was working there as a stock, in the stock, stocking the shelves and so forth. This fellow’s mouth had to be one of the most filthy mouth’s I’ve ever heard. Finally I just stopped, and I said, “Fella”, I said, “I’ve never heard such filth, ever coming out of anybody’s mouth!” I said, “There is an old proverb that says, ‘Some men’s minds are like race horses, they run best on a dirt track’, and I said, “It seems like your mind must be in a dirt track. You know, I’ve never heard such filth!” “Violence covereth the mouth of the wicked.” I mean it’s, it’s terrible to be around them, because they’re pouring out that filth on you! You know, I felt like I had to take a shower when I went home. But it’s terrible to plant that kind of filth in other people’s minds!
Hatred [And here hatred and love are contrasted, of course we know there’s quite a contrast between hatred and love! “Hatred”,] stirs up strifes (10:12):
I mean, man how many strifes are stirred up by hatred? Think of how many, how many things that have been stirred up by you, because you hated someone, or have been stirred up against you because someone hated you. Hatred stirs up strife, it creates strife. However…
love covers all sins (10:12).
There is a scripture in the new testament, that is no doubt was taken from this proverb. It says, “Love covers a multitude of sins”. You know, if you really love you say, “That’s alright!” My grandkids, they can do no wrong. So they pour a box of sugar out on the floor, and, “Isn’t that cute? You know, look! They’ve made a neat little pile out of it! Shows artistic ability the way they drew with it on the floor!” You know. Love covers a multitude of sins! You know, you say, “Ah!” Now the next proverb is contrasting understanding, and those who are void of understanding.
The lips of him that has understanding [in the lips] wisdom is found (10:13):
That’s why I like to be around men like Dr. Wilder Smith. You listen to him, wisdom is found. This guy is so wise. “And in the lips of understanding, the understanding, wisdom is found.” But…
the rod is for the back of him that is void of understanding (10:13).
They end up being beaten. Again, contrasting wise men, and foolish.
Wise men lay up knowledge: but the mouth of the foolish is near destruction (10:14).
That is, the wise men preserve knowledge. The foolish, destroyed. Near destruction. Rich men and poor men.
The rich man’s wealth is his strong city: [By his wealth he fortifies himself.] but the destruction of the poor is their poverty (10:15).
They are destroyed because of their poverty, they can’t afford to defend themselves. The righteous man, and the wicked again.
The labour of the righteous tendeth to life (10:16):
Again life and righteousness associated, properly so! Because the way of righteousness is the way of life. So, “The labour of the righteous tendeth to life”. But,
the fruit of the wicked to sin (10:16).
So there’s a contrast here also between labor and fruit. The effects of sin or wickedness, the sin, the fruit of wicked to sin. Now, those that keep instruction and those that refuse are contrasted.
He is in the way of life that keeps instruction: [If you listen and you follow instruction, you’re in the path of life.] but he that refuses [refuses] reproof erreth (10:17).
It’s a mistake not to listen to reproof. Now this one is just, it’s sort of building on itself. No contrast here, but sort of building.
He that hides hatred with lying lips (10:18),
This is often done. You really try to deceive by, by lying about it. So he says, “You really don’t like him”, “Oh yeah I like him, he’s alright”. And it’s not true, you hate him! And you’re trying to hide hatred with lying lips. “Oh I didn’t say that.”
and he that uttereth slander is a fool (10:18).
To slander someone else, to repeat slander about someone else, fool. Here is a contrast between a person who talks all the time, and a person who refrains.
In the multitude of words there wanteth not sin: [You talk enough and you’re going to, you’re going to reveal it.] but he that refraineth his lips is wise (10:19).
Now there’s another proverb that is similar to this, and I don’t think it’s in the bible. But, It’s better to keep your mouth shut and let men think you are a fool, than to open it and remove all doubts.” “He that refraineth his lips is wise.” I can’t tell you. It’s one I must just enjoy myself. !
Now the just is contrasted with the wicked.
The tongue of the just is as choice silver: [The silver tongue, you’ve heard of it.] the heart of the wicked is of little value. [Contrasting the just and the wicked.] The lips of the righteous feed many: [How many people are fed from the lips of the righteous!] but fools die for the lack of wisdom (10:20-21).
Then, this one is just, just a declaration, and I love it! This is one of my favorites.
The blessing of the Lord, it maketh rich, and he addeth no sorrow with it (10:22).
Oh how rich are the blessings of the Lord, and they make you so rich. I drive around Newport Beach, looking at all of the fancy houses and you know, bay fronts and the whole thing. And, I, I just think, “Man! I’m fortunate! I’m the richest man in Newport Beach!” Now you wouldn’t know that from my bank account, or from anything else. You’d have to know me. You’d have to know how rich I am. Because riches, true riches, are not measured by bank accounts. They’re measured by the blessings of God that are upon your life! “The blessings of the Lord make rich, He adds no sorrow with it.” I think of the sorrow that some of those people are going through. Here I am just so blessed of the Lord, so rich. The fool is contrasted with the man of understanding.
It is as sport to a fool to do mischief (10:23):
Now when I was in college years, this thing probably applied to me. We looked for mischief, and why is that? I don’t know. Guys used to come over at night and, “What are we gonna do?”, you know, looking for mischief. Sport, as a sport to a fool. You’re foolish.
but a man of understanding has wisdom. [Wicked and righteous contrasted.] The fear of the wicked, it shall come upon him (10:23-24):
Interesting. If you are fearing something, you’re wicked. It’ll usually come to pass.
but the desire of the righteous shall be granted. [Now again, wicked and righteous.] As the whirlwind passes, so is the wicked no more: [As the whirlwind goes through, passes by, so the wicked, blown away.] but the righteous is an everlasting foundation (10:24-25).
The eternal, the life, eternal life. Now, I don’t know what vinegar does to the teeth, but I do know what smoke does to the eyes.
As vinegar to the teeth, and as smoke to the eyes, so is the sluggard [or the lazy man] to those who send him (10:26).
I mean, you send a lazy guy to do a task, and that’s just like smoke in your eyes. I mean, it just smarts, it hurts! I, I suppose maybe without dentistry, that if your teeth are rather rotten, maybe vinegar really smarts on the teeth. I don’t know, but, “As vinegar to the teeth, and smoke to the eyes, so is the sluggard to those that send him”. The fear of the Lord contrasted with the wicked.
The fear of the Lord prolongeth days: [Again, life is associated with righteousness.] but the years of the wicked shall be shortened. [God will cut off the wicked.] The hope of the righteous shall be gladness: [Again righteousness and wickedness contrasted, “the hope of the righteous, gladness”.] but the expectation of the wicked shall perish. [It will not come to pass.] The way of the Lord is strength to the upright: but [the] destruction shall be to the workers of iniquity (10:27-29).
So the upright are contrasted with the workers of iniquity. “The way of the Lord, strength to the upright, destruction shall come to the workers of iniquity.” Righteousness and wickedness.
The righteous shall never be removed (10:30):
They live forever. There is that eternal purpose and plan that God has for the righteous, they will never be removed!
but the wicked shall not inhabit the earth (10:30).
That is, that new earth that God created. “Behold”, God said, “I make all things new. Create a new heaven and a new earth. The old things will pass away and never be brought into mind.” It talks about how the wicked will not be there, not inhabit it.
The mouth of the just [The just is contrasted with the perverse, “The mouth of the just”,] bringeth forth wisdom: but the [perverse, or] froward tongue shall be cut out. The lips of the righteous know what is acceptable: but the mouth of the wicked speaks perverseness (10:31-32).
So, several contrasts there between righteousness, wickedness, justice and wickedness.
A false balance is an abomination to the Lord (11:1):
So the false balance is contrasted with the just weight. Now in those days, the whole commercial system was done with balances. This is true up until not too many years ago. You would have scales, and they were balanced scales. You had these little weights. You had a half pound weight, you had a pound weight, you had a two pound weight, five pound weight. So a person would order five pounds of hamburger, they’d put the five pound weight on there, and then they would pile the hamburger on the other side of the scales, until they balanced. In, in those days, they usually had rocks that they would cut down to, to the weights. Always in situations where you have people, you have those people who are perverse. There would be those who had two sets of weights. One by which they would buy, and the other by which they would sell. Of course, the weights by which you sold were always lighter than those by which you bought. So, “a false balance”. The Lord’s rebuking this practice that people got involved in, in a false balance, false weights. They’re an abomination. God wants people to be fair. Now, that’s fair isn’t it?
Think of, well, for years here in the United States, we had a national bureau of standards, weights, and measures. I think that’s been absorbed into other governmental bureaucracy now, but they used to have the national standard of bureau standards of weights and measures. The purpose of this bureau was to make sure that a gallon was a gallon. They would go around to the service stations, and they would have a gallon can, and they would put a gallon of gas, according to the meter, and if it wasn’t a true gallon, then they would fine the station operator.
They had actual pound weights, they would put them on the scales to see if the weight, if the scales weighed them at exactly one pound. The idea was to have a standardized pound, a standardized gallon, a standardized quart, so that when you bought a pound of bread, you knew you were gonna get a pound loaf of bread. If it said, “One pound loaf”, they made sure it was one pound. That was the whole idea of standardizing all of the weights and measures so that you can engage in commerce. Imagine what would happen if, if everyone had their own standard of what a pound is! So you had nationalized standards.
I read of a farmer who was taken to court, by the baker. The baker accused the farmer of cutting the amount of butter that he was selling him. When he was supposed to be selling him a pound of butter, the baker said there was less than a pound. He sued the farmer for, he said, “Originally, I got a full pound. But gradually, he’s been cutting it down and to where he sells me a pound of butter now, and it’s not a real pound of butter. It’s only twelve ounces”. So the farmer got on the stand, and he said, “Well judge”, he said, “the only scales I have are balanced scales”. He said, “I’ve always just measured the butter on my balanced scales, with a pound loaf of bread that he sold me”. The farmer won the case. But you can see what happens if you have false balances. It’s an abomination to the Lord. God wants you to be fair in your business dealings.
It’s, it’s tough these days, because there are so many people that are willing to cut corners in businesses. So many willing, people are willing to do anything to get a contract, to get the job, and then you know, they start whittling away at people. God wants you to be fair, God wants you to be square, upright, straight, honest, in your business dealings. I’ve had a lot of business people say, “Well you can’t operate a business that way today. No way you can stay in business. If you’re honest, you’ll never get the job”. If you’re dishonest, the word will get around. You won’t be in business long. But you see, that’s the problem. These guys, they’re fly by nights. You know, they come, and they, you know they, do all this shoddy work, and then they’re gone. They file bankruptcy, and, but also the word gets around if you maintain a good reputation!
How many of you are looking for a good, honest mechanic? Ha, ha! How many would take your car to a good, honest mechanic, if you knew one? That, the problem with a good, honest mechanic is that, you’ve got to get a two month appointment to get your car into them! Because, you all want, you know, a mechanic can tell you anything about the car! “Oh well, you know, had to rebuild the entire carburetor”. Maybe all it needed was just a minor adjustment, but what do you know? God wants you to be square. Though, if you’re in business, be honest, be straight forward. “A false balance is an abomination to the Lord.”
but a just weight [a fair weight] is his delight (11:1).
God delights in it. Pride is contrasted with a man who is lowly.
When pride cometh, then cometh shame: but with the lowly is wisdom. [Integrity is contrasted with perversity.] The integrity of the upright shall guide them: [You’re living by principals, and your life is guided by these principals, so the integrity of the upright will be the guide to them.] but the perverseness of the transgressors shall destroy them (11:2-3).
Sort of what we were talking about. These guys in business who are perverse. They’ll be destroyed ultimately, by that perverseness.
Riches profit not in the day of wrath: [Doesn’t matter how rich you are, in the day of wrath, when God’s wrath comes upon the earth!] but righteousness delivereth him from death (11:4).
You know, when the day of God’s judgment comes, I don’t think it’s going to be any consolation to say, “Well, I’m the richest man in hell!” “Riches profit nothing in the day of wrath, but righteousness, it’ll deliver from that death.” Righteousness and wickedness contrasted.
The righteousness of the perfect shall direct his way: [You will seek that your life be directed in, in the right path, in the right way, and so the righteousness of the perfect shall direct his way.] but the wicked shall fall by his own wickedness. [You’ll fall in your own perversities.] The righteous of the upright shall deliver them: but the transgressors shall be taken in their own naughtiness (11:5-6).
It’s, it’s saying the same thing as verse five, only putting it in a little different way. Again, wickedness.
When a wicked man dies, his hopes perish (11:7):
I mean, that’s the end. When a wicked man dies there’s no more hope for him. It’s tragic when a wicked person dies. When a sin, when a sinner dies. It, there’s no hope! It leaves you such hopelessness.
and the hope of the unjust men perishes. [No hope, death is the end.] The righteous is delivered out of trouble, but the wicked [gets what he deserves] comes in his stead. Hypocrites with his mouth destroys his neighbour: but through knowledge shall the just be delivered. [Again, righteousness and wickedness.] When it goes well with the righteous, the city rejoices: and when the wicked perish, there is shouting (11:7-10).
It’s interesting. Herod was a wicked man, Herod the Great. He had done so many horrible things to the people, that everybody hated him. Because everybody hated him, he feared for his life. Because he feared constantly he was gonna be assassinated. He, he, he had a paranoia about this. He always thought that people were plotting against him. Rightfully so, because there were just any number of people loved to have done that guy in. He was, he was just so cruel, so, so horrible. A monster kind of a guy.
Knowing that people hated him so much, he ordered on his death, that several of the popular men in the city, should be executed. Because he didn’t want a lot of partying and rejoicing when he died. He wanted people to weep, and be sorry, and they knew, he knew, they wouldn’t be sorry for him! So he ordered these popular men in the community to be executed when he died, so that there would be weeping, instead of shouting and rejoicing, at his death.
Fortunately, the soldiers were wise enough to realize when he was dying, “Well why should we follow his orders? He’s dead now”. So they didn’t execute those men that he had determined should be executed. So it was party time! When Herod died. And there was shouting! “When the wicked perish, there is shouting.”
By the blessing of the upright the city is exalted (1:11):
Because you have a person who is upright, who is ruling, the people rejoice. They’re blessed! They’re exalted!
but it is overthrown by the mouth of the wicked. [Verse twelve contrasting a man who is void of wisdom with a man of understanding.] He that is void of wisdom despises his neighbour: [If you despise your neighbor, then it means that you’re just void of wisdom.] but a man of understanding will hold his peace. [This one is good.] A talebearer revealeth secrets: but he that is of a faithful spirit will conceal the matter (11:11-13).
He’ll not go around telling it. A talebearer will stir strife. He reveals the secrets.
Where no counsel is, the people will fall: [How many people have fallen because they won’t take counsel, they won’t listen to counsel?] but in the multitude of counsellors there’s safety (11:14).
Seek someone else’s advice. Seek an opinion of a person that you respect, a person who isn’t so emotionally involved in the situation, as you are. Someone who is a little, can be a little more objective. You get so deeply involved, you don’t take counsel.
He that is surety for a stranger will smart for it (11:15):
That is, if you guarantee the loan of a, a stranger, you’ll smart for it! You’ll, you’ll, you’ll hurt.
and he that hateth suretyship is sure (11:15).
Ha, ha! You hate being a guarantee for someone else’s debts.
A gracious woman retains honour: [That’s beautiful.] and strong men retain riches (11:16).
Here is complimentary, not contrasting, but sort of complimentary. “A gracious woman retaining honour, strong men retaining riches.” Now the merciful man, with the cruel man.
The merciful man does good to his own soul: but he that is cruel troubles his own flesh (11:17).
You know, you hurt yourself by hatred, by unforgiving spirits. You’re the one that hurts for it! You’re hurting yourself, to have bitterness that’s just eating you up. It hurts you. You’re the one that is hurt. A lot of times the person that you’re bitter about, they’re not hurt by it. They, you know, they can just pass it off many times, and say, “Well!”. You know, I, I have a way of just passing off a person’s bitter things that they might feel, or say about me. I just say, “Well why would you listen to a fool?”, you know. I just pass it off. But, it eats them up! They’re being destroyed by it! If you are forgiving, if you’re merciful, say, “Oh that’s fine. That’s alright”, and you don’t let it eat on you. It, you, you do yourself good. It’s, helpful, it’s merciful. Does himself good. But if you’re cruel, if you hold these things and all, you’re just destroying yourself. You trouble your own flesh.
It’s interesting that they are beginning now to relate more and more, the attitudes that you have with certain physical kind of maladies. They’re finding that there’s quite a relationship between extreme bitterness that a person is carrying, and ulcers. How that our bodies, the, the glands produce these different chemicals, hormones. There is a proverb, and we’ll get to it, “A merry heart doeth good like medicine”. We know that to be happy is, is very helpful for a person. It helps you digest your food, if you’re, if you’re happy and laughing at the table, it helps digest your food. If you’re angry and bitter and you’re eating, the food just sort of curdles in your stomach. You know, churns. Bad chemicals are being mixed that can have a physical effect upon you. You’re, you’re, you’re thinking, you’re, the bitterness, the, these things can, can be destructive to your flesh, as the proverb says.
The wicked works a deceitful work: but to him that soweth righteousness there will be a sure reward. The righteous tendeth to life: [Again, righteousness and life associated.] so he that pursueth evil pursues his own death (11:18-19).
So the, where righteousness is related to life, evil is related to death. “As pursuing his own death”, the evil.
They that are of a perverse heart are an abomination to the Lord: but such as are upright in their way are his delight (11:20).
Now wouldn’t it be, wouldn’t it be horrible if God said, “Oh they’re an abomination to me!” I don’t want to be an abomination to God! I want God to look at me with delight. I want God to be delighted in me. I want God to have delight from my life. “If you’re perverse in heart, you’re an abomination to God, but if you’re upright, your way is His delight.”
Though hand join in hand, [Will join together] yet the wicked shall not be unpunished: [You can’t escape it.] but the seed of the righteous shall be delivered. [This one is interesting!] As a jewel of gold in a swine’s snout, so is a beautiful woman who has no discretion (11:21-22).
Just out of place! A beautiful woman without discretion. It’s just, you know, they, gold in a swine’s snout. It’s just out of place. So is a beautiful woman who is without discretion.
The desire of the righteous is only good: [If you are truly a righteous person, you desire those things that are good, their rightness and goodness are related to each other.] but the expectation of the wicked is wrath. [Now] There is that one who scatters, and yet he increases; and there is the one who withholds more than is necessary, but it tends to poverty (11:23-24).
There’s an interesting spiritual principle involved here, and it’s not always understood. There is a spiritual principle concerning giving. Especially when it relates to the things of God, and giving to God. Jesus sort of uh, expressed the principle when He said, “Give and it shall be given unto you, measured out, pressed down, and running over shall men give, into your bosom”. That is by being generous and giving, more will be given to you. If you are tight, stingy, withholding, then that will tend towards poverty. The Lord said that we should be giving. So, “He who scatters”, there are those that scatter, they give, “and yet they increase, and yet there are those who are holding on”, or trying to hold on, “more than is necessary and it tends towards poverty”. He’s gonna give us three proverbs here that deal with the same subject, in a row.
The liberal soul shall be made fat: he that watereth shall be watered also himself (11:25).
So the encouragement towards being generous, towards being liberal, towards giving to others. If you give water, you will be watered yourself.
He that withholdeth the corn, [in contrast] the people will curse him: but blessing shall be upon the head of him that sells it. [So the importance of, of giving, generosity.] He that diligently seeks good will procure favour: but he that seeks mischief, it shall come unto him (11:26-27).
“Whatever a man sows, that he shall also reap.” It’ll come back to you. What is a proverb, that little chick, little hens that come home to roost, or something like that? You know, it comes back to you is, is what the idea is, and that’s what the proverb is saying here. “Your mischief will come back to you.”
He that trusts in his riches shall fall: [Now it’s talking about trusting in riches, contrasting with] the righteous who will flourish like a branch. He that troubleth his own house shall inherit the wind: and the fool shall be the servant to the wise of heart (11:28-29).
No contrast. Just, they both are, are fools!
The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life; [Life related to righteousness, once more.] and he that winneth souls is wise (11:30).
That’s also repeated in Daniel. “He that winneth souls is wise.” “Fruit of the righteous is the tree of life.” Winning souls, wise.
Behold, the righteous shall be recompensed in the earth: much more the wicked and the sinners (11:31).
In other words, it’s gonna come back to you. “Whatever a man sows, that shall he also reap.” “The righteous shall be recompensed in the earth: but how much more the wicked, and the sinner.”
Didn’t get as far as I thought we would. We’ll take chapter twelve next week. Thirteen, he continues to contrast righteousness, and wickedness. So, wisdom, understanding, reproof, instructions. That’s the purpose of Proverbs. The wise will give heed, and will avoid a lot of pitfalls, will prosper. The foolish, they’ll fall in the pit, because they have not given heed to the instruction.
Father we thank You for the words of wisdom that tend to life, to health, to godliness. May we give heed, may we follow the instructions. May we walk in the path of righteousness and peace, goodness and love, in Jesus’ name, Amen.
Edited & Highlighted from “The Word For Today” Transcription, Pastor Chuck Smith, Tape #7221