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September 14

Pastor’s Note

Today we find a challenging truth right at the beginning of Proverbs 25, “It is the glory of God to conceal things, but the glory of kings is to search things out” (v.2). May we be done with the thought that God coddles his children and wants to serve up everything on a silver platter. Let us instead dig into God’s word today as inquisitive royalty. In 2 Corinthians 6 we see the hard truth regarding God’s expectation that we live distinctive lives—avoiding the many opportunities that confront us to closely associate with those who disdain God and his word.

— Pastor Mike

Proverbs 25-27

More Proverbs of Solomon

25:1 These also are proverbs of Solomon which the men of Hezekiah king of Judah copied.

It is the glory of God to conceal things,
 but the glory of kings is to search things out.
As the heavens for height, and the earth for depth,
 so the heart of kings is unsearchable.
Take away the dross from the silver,
 and the smith has material for a vessel;
take away the wicked from the presence of the king,
 and his throne will be established in righteousness.
Do not put yourself forward in the king’s presence
 or stand in the place of the great,
for it is better to be told, “Come up here,”
 than to be put lower in the presence of a noble.

What your eyes have seen
 do not hastily bring into court,
for [1] what will you do in the end,
 when your neighbor puts you to shame?
Argue your case with your neighbor himself,
 and do not reveal another’s secret,
10 lest he who hears you bring shame upon you,
 and your ill repute have no end.

11 A word fitly spoken
 is like apples of gold in a setting of silver.
12 Like a gold ring or an ornament of gold
 is a wise reprover to a listening ear.
13 Like the cold of snow in the time of harvest
 is a faithful messenger to those who send him;
 he refreshes the soul of his masters.
14 Like clouds and wind without rain
 is a man who boasts of a gift he does not give.

15 With patience a ruler may be persuaded,
 and a soft tongue will break a bone.
16 If you have found honey, eat only enough for you,
 lest you have your fill of it and vomit it.
17 Let your foot be seldom in your neighbor’s house,
 lest he have his fill of you and hate you.
18 A man who bears false witness against his neighbor
 is like a war club, or a sword, or a sharp arrow.
19 Trusting in a treacherous man in time of trouble
 is like a bad tooth or a foot that slips.
20 Whoever sings songs to a heavy heart
 is like one who takes off a garment on a cold day,
 and like vinegar on soda.
21 If your enemy is hungry, give him bread to eat,
 and if he is thirsty, give him water to drink,
22 for you will heap burning coals on his head,
 and the Lord will reward you.
23 The north wind brings forth rain,
 and a backbiting tongue, angry looks.
24 It is better to live in a corner of the housetop
 than in a house shared with a quarrelsome wife.
25 Like cold water to a thirsty soul,
 so is good news from a far country.
26 Like a muddied spring or a polluted fountain
 is a righteous man who gives way before the wicked.
27 It is not good to eat much honey,
 nor is it glorious to seek one’s own glory. [2]
28 A man without self-control
 is like a city broken into and left without walls.
26:1 Like snow in summer or rain in harvest,
 so honor is not fitting for a fool.
Like a sparrow in its flitting, like a swallow in its flying,
 a curse that is causeless does not alight.
A whip for the horse, a bridle for the donkey,
 and a rod for the back of fools.
Answer not a fool according to his folly,
 lest you be like him yourself.
Answer a fool according to his folly,
 lest he be wise in his own eyes.
Whoever sends a message by the hand of a fool
 cuts off his own feet and drinks violence.
Like a lame man’s legs, which hang useless,
 is a proverb in the mouth of fools.
Like one who binds the stone in the sling
 is one who gives honor to a fool.
Like a thorn that goes up into the hand of a drunkard
 is a proverb in the mouth of fools.
10 Like an archer who wounds everyone
 is one who hires a passing fool or drunkard. [3]
11 Like a dog that returns to his vomit
 is a fool who repeats his folly.
12 Do you see a man who is wise in his own eyes?
 There is more hope for a fool than for him.
13 The sluggard says, “There is a lion in the road!
 There is a lion in the streets!”
14 As a door turns on its hinges,
 so does a sluggard on his bed.
15 The sluggard buries his hand in the dish;
 it wears him out to bring it back to his mouth.
16 The sluggard is wiser in his own eyes
 than seven men who can answer sensibly.
17 Whoever meddles in a quarrel not his own
 is like one who takes a passing dog by the ears.
18 Like a madman who throws firebrands, arrows, and death
19 is the man who deceives his neighbor
 and says, “I am only joking!”
20 For lack of wood the fire goes out,
 and where there is no whisperer, quarreling ceases.
21 As charcoal to hot embers and wood to fire,
 so is a quarrelsome man for kindling strife.
22 The words of a whisperer are like delicious morsels;
 they go down into the inner parts of the body.
23 Like the glaze [4] covering an earthen vessel
 are fervent lips with an evil heart.
24 Whoever hates disguises himself with his lips
 and harbors deceit in his heart;
25 when he speaks graciously, believe him not,
 for there are seven abominations in his heart;
26 though his hatred be covered with deception,
 his wickedness will be exposed in the assembly.
27 Whoever digs a pit will fall into it,
 and a stone will come back on him who starts it rolling.
28 A lying tongue hates its victims,
 and a flattering mouth works ruin.
27:1 Do not boast about tomorrow,
 for you do not know what a day may bring.
Let another praise you, and not your own mouth;
 a stranger, and not your own lips.
A stone is heavy, and sand is weighty,
 but a fool’s provocation is heavier than both.
Wrath is cruel, anger is overwhelming,
 but who can stand before jealousy?
Better is open rebuke
 than hidden love.
Faithful are the wounds of a friend;
 profuse are the kisses of an enemy.
One who is full loathes honey,
 but to one who is hungry everything bitter is sweet.
Like a bird that strays from its nest
 is a man who strays from his home.
Oil and perfume make the heart glad,
 and the sweetness of a friend comes from his earnest counsel. [5]
10 Do not forsake your friend and your father’s friend,
 and do not go to your brother’s house in the day of your calamity.
Better is a neighbor who is near
 than a brother who is far away.
11 Be wise, my son, and make my heart glad,
 that I may answer him who reproaches me.
12 The prudent sees danger and hides himself,
 but the simple go on and suffer for it.
13 Take a man’s garment when he has put up security for a stranger,
 and hold it in pledge when he puts up security for an adulteress. [6]
14 Whoever blesses his neighbor with a loud voice,
 rising early in the morning,
 will be counted as cursing.
15 A continual dripping on a rainy day
 and a quarrelsome wife are alike;
16 to restrain her is to restrain the wind
 or to grasp [7] oil in one’s right hand.
17 Iron sharpens iron,
 and one man sharpens another. [8]
18 Whoever tends a fig tree will eat its fruit,
 and he who guards his master will be honored.
19 As in water face reflects face,
 so the heart of man reflects the man.
20 Sheol and Abaddon are never satisfied,
 and never satisfied are the eyes of man.
21 The crucible is for silver, and the furnace is for gold,
 and a man is tested by his praise.
22 Crush a fool in a mortar with a pestle
 along with crushed grain,
 yet his folly will not depart from him.

23 Know well the condition of your flocks,
 and give attention to your herds,
24 for riches do not last forever;
 and does a crown endure to all generations?
25 When the grass is gone and the new growth appears
 and the vegetation of the mountains is gathered,
26 the lambs will provide your clothing,
 and the goats the price of a field.
27 There will be enough goats’ milk for your food,
 for the food of your household
 and maintenance for your girls.

2 Corinthians 6

6:1 Working together with him, then, we appeal to you not to receive the grace of God in vain. For he says,

“In a favorable time I listened to you,
 and in a day of salvation I have helped you.”

Behold, now is the favorable time; behold, now is the day of salvation. We put no obstacle in anyone’s way, so that no fault may be found with our ministry, but as servants of God we commend ourselves in every way: by great endurance, in afflictions, hardships, calamities, beatings, imprisonments, riots, labors, sleepless nights, hunger; by purity, knowledge, patience, kindness, the Holy Spirit, genuine love; by truthful speech, and the power of God; with the weapons of righteousness for the right hand and for the left; through honor and dishonor, through slander and praise. We are treated as impostors, and yet are true; as unknown, and yet well known; as dying, and behold, we live; as punished, and yet not killed; 10 as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, yet possessing everything.

11 We have spoken freely to you, [9] Corinthians; our heart is wide open. 12 You are not restricted by us, but you are restricted in your own affections. 13 In return (I speak as to children) widen your hearts also.

The Temple of the Living God

14 Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness? 15 What accord has Christ with Belial? [10]Or what portion does a believer share with an unbeliever? 16 What agreement has the temple of God with idols? For we are the temple of the living God; as God said,

“I will make my dwelling among them and walk among them,
 and I will be their God,
 and they shall be my people.
17 Therefore go out from their midst,
 and be separate from them, says the Lord,
and touch no unclean thing;
 then I will welcome you,
18 and I will be a father to you,
 and you shall be sons and daughters to me,
says the Lord Almighty.”

Footnotes

[1] 25:8 Hebrew or else
[2] 25:27 The meaning of the Hebrew line is uncertain
[3] 26:10 Or hires a fool or passersby
[4] 26:23 By revocalization; Hebrew silver of dross
[5] 27:9 Or and so does the sweetness of a friend that comes from his earnest counsel
[6] 27:13 Hebrew a foreign woman; a slight emendation yields (compare Vulgate; see also 20:16) foreigners
[7] 27:16 Hebrew to meet with
[8] 27:17 Hebrew sharpens the face of another
[9] 6:11 Greek Our mouth is open to you
[10] 6:15 Greek Beliar

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