Introduction to Proverbs
Proverbs states its theme right at the book’s beginning (1:1-7): it’s goal is to describe and instill “wisdom” in God’s people, a wisdom that is founded in the “fear of the Lord” and that works out in the life of the believer in the practical details of everyday situations and relationships.
Proverbs covers a wide array of topics from daily life: diligence and laziness (6:6-11); friendships (3:27-28; 18:24); speech (10:19-21); marriage (18:22; 19:14); child rearing (22:6); domestic peace (15:17; 17-1); work (11:1); getting along with others and good manners (23:1-2; 25:16-17; 26:17-19; 27:14; eternity (14:32; 23:17-18); and much more. In each of these areas it offers wisdom for realizing the life of the godly; it shows that godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come” (1 Timothy 4:8). It demonstrates clearly that:
1. God’s will is intensely practical, applying to every aspect of His people’s lives. A proper relation to God involves, first, trying hard to understand His truth and then embracing and obeying what one understands.
2. A life lived by God’s will is a happy life (3:21-26).
3. A life lived by God’s will is a useful life (3:27-28; 12:18, 25).
4. A life lived by God’s will does not just happen; one must seek after it, study, pursue it, and discipline oneself.
5. Wisdom invites the naïve to forsake folly and accept