Archive for the ‘Proverbs 30’ Category

Under Gods Command 

Proverbs 30:20 This is the way of an adulteress; She eats and wipes her mouth and says, I’ve done nothing wrong. 

An adulteress is incredible! She has the least amount of conscience and the most amount of pretension. She commits one of the most heinous betrayals possible, yet she can talk and live, as if she has done nothing. She will keep up wifely habits to keep her trusting husband and others from suspecting. Having just described four wonderful things beyond his easy perception, the prophet Agur compared an adulteress to them (Pr 30:1,18-19).

The way an eagle soars on thermal updrafts and dives after prey is marvelous. The way a snake moves without arms or legs on a smooth rock is marvelous. The way a bulky ship sails smoothly through seas without oars or trail is marvelous. And the ease and power with which a man wins a virgin is marvelous. These four things are hard to discern, and so is it hard to believe a married woman can have sex with another man (Pr 30:18-20).

The eating of this proverb does not involve food – it is the sexual acts of the adulteress. She opens her legs to a stranger and enjoys physical pleasures limited to her husband and his bed only. Eating is used here as a euphemism for sexual intercourse, as it was used earlier (Pr 5:15; 9:17; 20:17). While the Bible may use plainer speech in other places, it chooses a euphemism to enhance the proverb here (Ezek 16:17,25-26; 23:16-21).

The wiping of her mouth does not involve a napkin – it is the covering of her tracks to avoid detection. She does everything necessary to hide her liaisons from her husband and others. She waits for her husband to be away (Pr 7:19-20; Gen 39:7-12). She speedily takes care of household duties; she makes the lost time disappear; she hides any signs of her sin; she washes her body and prepares to meet her husband as if everything is fine.

She pretends by her words and actions to her husband that all is well. She dotes on her husband at home and in public. She enters his bed and is intimate with him as if all is well. She plays with her children, speaks with the neighbors, attends church on Sunday, dresses merrily, and continues to wear his wedding ring. There is no compunction, guilt, or remorse. She acts as if she has done nothing wrong at all, in spite of her heinous sin.

The present generation glamorizes adulteresses by movies and serials, performing artists and actresses, romance novels, psychotherapists, and profane marriage counselors. Think “Braveheart,”  “Doctor Zhivago,” “Desperate Housewives,” “Sex and the City,” Princess Diana, etc.! Hollywood never glamorizes marriage! Never! While adultery once brought capital punishment, public flogging, or branding, it is laughed at today and admired as an exciting event. Though a crime on the books of many states, it is not enforced in any state. The whole world eats, wipes its mouth, and says, “I have done no wickedness!”

But there is a God in heaven that hates adultery and adulteresses. It is not an affair: it is not having a lover; it is not a weak moment; it is adultery – the violation of a marriage covenant and wedding (Ex 20:14). Adulteresses received the death penalty in a nation where God wrote the laws (Lev 20:10; Ezek 16:38), and the Jews conspiratorial attempt to trap Jesus and His response do not change God’s civil opinion at all (John 8:1-11).

God designed the woman’s body to prove virginity when entering marriage, and He gave a test under Moses to expose infidelity after marriage (Deut 22:13-21; Num 5:11-31). How far did He go to enforce female chastity? He called for cutting off a wife’s hands for touching another man’s genitals, even if assisting her husband in a fight (Deut 25:11-12). He may have allowed polygamy for hard male hearts, but never polyandry (Ex 21:10-11).

For any adulteress convicted and condemned by this proverb, repentance makes all the difference in the world. The Lord Jesus Christ is as quick to forgive this sin as any other (Luke 7:36-50; John 4:4-42; 8:1-11; I Cor 6:9-11). Jesus received repenting harlots gladly, and they entered His kingdom before religious types (Matt 21:31-32). You can clear yourself altogether from this heinous sin by godly sorrow (II Cor 7:10-11). Glory!

God blessed Bathsheba to be in the lineage of Jesus Christ twice (II Sam 12:24; Matt 1:6; Luke 3:31; I Chron 3:5). Both Tamar and Rahab made the same lineage, though guilty of the sin of adultery also (Matt 1:3,5). While the sins of Mary Magdalene, once possessed by seven devils, are not known, Jesus appeared to her first after His resurrection (Mark 16:9). Rejoice, repentant reader! Your sins are forgiven! Go in peace, and sin no more!

The proverb describes adulterous women, for Proverbs is primarily a book of wisdom and warnings for young men (Pr 1:1-7). But there is an adulterer for every adulteress. Let every man remember God’s justice required the death of the adulteress and adulterer (Lev 20:10). Godly men make covenants with their eyes when they marry – they will not think about sexual intimacy with another woman (Job 31:1). Solomon condemned looking at other women, and he taught men to be content with a wife (Pr 6:24-26; 5:18-20).

There is more than one way to be an adulteress. The very thought of foolishness is sin, so any fantasies of the heart are equal in the sight of God to the actual deed (Pr 24:9; Ex 20:17; Job 31:1; Matt 5:28). A godly woman is chaste in thought and deed (Tit 2:5; I Pet 3:2). There is no more liberty for a woman to read romance novels, watch soap operas, or enjoy Hollywood romance movies than for a man to fantasize with pornography.

There is more than one way to be an adulteress. The holy God of heaven considers friendship with the world by Christians or churches to be spiritual adultery (Ezek 16:1-59; Hos 1:1-3; 9:1; II Cor 11:1-4; Jas 4:4). He is a jealous God, and He will not share His glory, affection, or worship with any others (Deut 4:23-26; Josh 24:19; Heb 12:28-29).

He rejects those who think they can love Him and the things of the world at the same time (Matt 6:24; Phil 3:18-19; I John 2:15-17). He rejects compromised worship like a man would reject his wife remembering or doting on other lovers (Ezek 23:38-39; II Cor 6:14-17). If you love the world, you are flirting or committing adultery with His enemy!

Jesus Christ showed John a vision of a great whore with harlot daughters, who was full of abominations and filthy fornication (Rev 17:1-6). This whore also eats, wipes her mouth, and professes to be innocent and pure, for she is a specific church renowned for spiritual fornication against the God of heaven. Her severe judgment is described in detail (Rev 17:15-17; 18:1-24). What church is she? The city that ruled the world in the days of John (Rev 17:18)! Who are her daughters? The churches that came out of her later!

Under Gods Command 

Proverbs 30:07 Two things I ask of you, O Lord; do not refuse me before I die 

Do you pray wisely? Do you pray fervently? You reveal your heart by your prayers. Life is short, and pleasing God should be your greatest ambition. Only a few men use their lives well in pursuing this noblest goal. Agur expressed himself strongly to God for two crucial factors in living a life to honor God. Admitting the brevity of life, and confessing his great need, he prayed aggressively for these two important things.

His prayer was not long, for content and fervency are more valuable than length. God rejects the vain repetitions and pagan nature of the Rosary (Matt 6:7-8). Though Agur had other needs, he knew the supreme priority of spiritual blessings. His first request was directly spiritual, and his second was to submit his carnal needs to it. If you always seek God’s kingdom and righteousness first, he will take care of the rest (Matt 6:33).

What did Agur request? He first asked God to save him from vanity and lies (Pr 30:8). He begged for deliverance from the foolish and profitless ideas of men and the empty and worthless life this world offers. He asked the Lord to keep him from believing the deceitful lies of men. He knew that worldly opinions and activities were vain and vexing (Ps 119:113; Ecc 1:1-3; 12:8; Matt 6:24; I Tim 4:8; II Tim 3:1-5; Jas 4:4; I John 2:15-17).

What did Agur request? He then asked God to give him only convenient and modest success (Pr 30:8). He wanted to avoid both poverty and wealth, knowing that each brought its own set of temptations and trials (Pr 30:9). He did not pray against both for the carnal difficulties each could bring, but rather for their effect on His love of God. Riches could puff up his mind and turn him away from God (Pr 18:11; 28:11; I Tim 6:6-10), and poverty could lead him to steal and disgrace God’s name (Pr 1:10-19; 6:30-31).

These two requests were very wise and noble. Agur did not use prayer to satisfy his lusts, as most men do when they pray (Jas 4:3). He sought the glory of God, the truth, and the spiritual good of his soul, even if it meant sacrificing some success. As in Solomon’s case, obtaining wisdom to please God was more important than riches (I Kgs 3:5-13). As with Moses, reproach with God’s people was better than sinful pleasures (Heb 11:24-26).

Consider Agur’s aggressive prayer. First, he requested the things of the Lord. He did not merely suggest an idea or propose a thought; he demanded the blessing, like Jacob long before him (Gen 32:24-28). He was intensely serious about these requests, for he knew they were holy petitions. He then confessed his definite mortality, appealing to the immortal God for a speedy answer before his short life would be over (Ps 90:10-12). His prayer surely worked, for it was fervent in application and righteous in content (Jas 5:16).

Do you pray more for carnal things or spiritual things? When did you last pray for wisdom (Jas 1:5), a single heart to fear God (Ps 86:11), the Holy Spirit (Luke 11:13), God to make you keep His precepts (Ps 119:35-37), or the Lord to expose your errors (Ps 139:23-24)? If loving and pleasing God is your highest priority, you will have spiritual prayer requests. If you put spiritual requests first, God in heaven will take care of the rest.

When did you last wrestle with God for these things, refusing to take no for an answer? Importunate and persistent prayers get answers; comfortable and quick prayers of convenience do not (Luke 11:5-13; 18:1-8; Rom 12:12; Eph 6:18). May the Holy Spirit of prayer convict you to greater praying and assist your efforts to do it (Rom 8:26-27).

Under Gods Command 

Proverbs 28:19 He who works his land will have abundant food, but the one who chases fantasies will have his fill of poverty. 

Do you want financial success? Then do a basic job well, day after day, obeying the economic wisdom in Proverbs. It will work! God and Solomon guarantee it! Stop going to promotional meetings, hating to work for others, listening to too-good-to-be-true investment ideas, or daydreaming about a better life. Make pleasure and rest your last thoughts (Pr 21:17,20). Consistent hard work at a needed job will work. Following the lying promises of promoters will not work. Learn wisdom: love work: hate distractions!

Men by nature are greedy and lazy. They want more of the good things of life than others have, but they want to exert themselves less than others to get them. Therefore they are tempted by two economic sins – to resent their basic jobs and/or listen to pipe dreams. Learn wisdom: love work: hate greed! Because Solomon had observed these temptations destroying men’s financial lives, he repeated this proverb in similar language (Pr 12:11).

Who in the world wants to be a farmer, when he could be a real estate tycoon driving a sports car and making deals on his cell phone of houses purchased with no money down? Who would choose to be a nurse, when she could be an international photographer for an Internet news magazine? Why be a factory slave, when you could use multilevel marketing of a mineral substitute for Viagra made from sea salt to live on a yacht by 30?

Farming was not the only job in Solomon’s day. But it best illustrated the lesson of this proverb. Farming required hard work, planning, patience, and repetition. It was the most basic of jobs – using the earth to produce food and/or to use the food to raise cattle or other animals for various products. But tilling a field behind oxen became boring and stupid when you heard fantastic rumors of network marketing riches in clothes soap!

The tortoise beats the hare financially. While the tortoise plods forward an inch at a time toward his economic goals, the hare runs at full speed from distraction to distraction, some costing him precious capital, and all costing him valuable time. When they come to the day of reckoning, the faithful labors, sound investments, and patience of the tortoise have given him a comfortable estate. The hare is exhausted, frustrated, and broke!

Solomon despised get-rich-quick schemes. He saw poor men make good income, but foolish ideas wasted it (Pr 13:23). Diligent labor in a basic job brings success (Pr 27:18). Talking about financial fantasies makes men poor (Pr 14:23). Getting distracted from the job at hand is terrible (Pr 27:23-27). Increase is by strength and leverage, not scheming (Pr 14:4). He saw financial exceptions destroying fools looking for a free lunch (Pr 1:32).

Vain persons are everywhere, especially with radio, television, telephones, magazines, newspapers, the Internet, and email. They promote the rich and famous, though they are only 1 out of 10,000. They offer impossible returns to steal your savings for themselves. Governments offer lotteries that are nothing but a tax on the poor and stupid. And liars flaunt the extravagant lifestyle of multilevel marketing “successes,” while ignoring the 98% that bought the overpriced product to pay for the “success.” The net result of these and all other financial “shortcuts” is always negative – you lose! Going down?

Why do any listen to such nonsense? Why would anyone consider lies from a person trying to fleece them of their hard earned money? There are only a few reasons. All of them are sins. Two have been given – discontentment with your job and covetousness for a different life. In addition, some do not like submitting to other men, which is simply pride and rebellion. And last, some through willful ignorance do not examine things with a critical and pessimistic eye to avoid lying snakes (Pr 14:15; 15:22; 27:12; I Thess 5:21).

This generation is obsessed with ease and pleasure – amusement, games, recreation, sports, and relaxation – but these things ruin men financially. If you love pleasure, you are going to be poor (Pr 21:17). If you love sleep, you are going to be poor (Pr 20:4,13). You will learn to despise work, because it is not as much fun to you as riotous living and sleeping in (Pr 19:15). You will waste your money on foolish amusements (Pr 21:20; Luke 15:13). And this childish lifestyle will take you down (Pr 23:21).

Your safety is in God’s word. Hard work works (Pr 10:4; 13:4; 22:29).  Haste makes financial waste (Pr 19:2; 28:20,22). Believe nothing without proof, especially testimonials or “results” above market rates (Pr 13:11; 14:15; 22:3). Taking the easy road will ruin you economically (Pr 6:9-11; 24:30-34). Only one document in the world is totally true – the Bible. Everyone and everything else are liars (Rom 3:4). Obey this proverb; love your job; do it well each day; thank God for success. If you scoff at or neglect this proverb, you will wake up poor with a hardworking neighbor ruling over you.

The proverb’s lesson applies to religious pursuits as well. There is no get-spiritual-quick seminar or television offering that can compete with daily prayer and Bible reading and listening carefully to the preaching of God’s word (II Tim 3:6-7; 4:1-4). Do not follow the vain religious personalities that offer their seductive road to God and heaven. They are liars just like the financial hucksters. There is only one door and Shepherd of the sheep, and the abundant life is obtained by obeying Him and His words (John 10:1-18).






Under Gods Command 

Proverbs 30:26 The conies (Rabbits) are but a feeble folk, yet make they their houses in the rocks;

Are you as smart as a coney? Wise Agur used four small creatures to teach his students great wisdom (Pr 30:1,24). The ants prudently save for the future (Pr 30:25). The locusts know the power of numbers (Pr 30:27). The spider by diligence goes where most cannot (Pr 30:28). The conies wisely avoid risk and loss by choosing safe and strong protection.

Evolution is a damnable lie from hell believed by God-haters after He darkened their minds (Rom 1:18-25; I Tim 6:20-21). God created every living thing, and much wisdom can be obtained by analyzing them. Sluggards can learn by the industry of the ant (Pr 6:6-8). The fearful can learn by considering God’s care for birds and flowers (Matt 6:25-32).

What is a coney? It is a rabbit, which used to be properly and ordinarily called a coney.  The variety Agur considered for this proverb lives in the caves and clefts of mountains on several continents. Without ability to defend themselves other than speed of retreat, these feeble creatures make their homes in rock strongholds where they can run for protection.

What is the lesson of wisdom for you? When exposed to danger or risk, you should wisely hide yourself from the threat (Pr 22:3; 27:12). Rather than foolishly exposing yourself to trouble, you should protect yourself from loss by using whatever means are available. You are not very strong yourself, so you should look for other protection.

Consider some examples. Your life is feeble, and your family will suffer if you die early. Term life insurance would create an estate for them, if that were to happen. Your health is feeble, and medical costs today could quickly wipe out your savings. Health insurance protects you from that catastrophe. This is how feeble folk make their houses in rocks.

You are a feeble investor, but you can easily join a mutual fund for professional management and diversify risk across many stocks. You are feeble at savings, but a company 401k plan can give you a solid advantage. A layoff from your job with too much debt could make your family feebler, so you reduce or eliminate your financial debt before such an event. This is how feeble folk make their houses in rocks. They are safe.

Your house is also feeble, since a strong tornado could blow it away, or an accidental fire could burn it to the ground. Homeowners insurance is what wise men do to protect against such a large loss. Your car seems strong, but when it meets another car, they both crumple easily, showing that they also are feeble, so you insure them against large losses.

If you live in a crime zone, you move to a safer area, have a security system installed, get a mean dog, or let Mr. Smith and Mr. Wesson move in. If you own a business, you buy liability insurance against a sue-happy generation that has no remorse about ruining your business. If your business would be severely impaired by your death or other principal officers or employees, you get large life insurance policies designed for this possibility.

Some Christians have not been taught Bible wisdom, so they think they should live from hand to mouth and trust God to take care of the rest. They accuse those that buy insurance as not having faith in God. They consider themselves spiritual giants by Bible reading and prayer while foolishly exposing their families to ruin. They have not read Proverbs, where Solomon repeatedly warns to reduce risk of all kinds in any way possible.

Think spiritually. Your father Adam’s sin and your own sins have made you very feeble, without strength, before God. You are exposed to horrific eternal danger. But thanks be to God, Who sent Jesus Christ to die for His elect in their feeble condition (Rom 5:6-21). Flee to the Rock Christ Jesus for refuge and guarantee your future safety by building your house upon the rock of His sayings (I Cor 10:4; Matt 7:24-27; Heb 6:18; Ps 62:7; 94:22).

Under Gods Command

Proverbs 30:31 A greyhound; an he goat also; and a king with his army around him.

Here are three more things comely in their going, beautiful in the discharge of their gifts and offices (Pr 30:29-31)! The lion, the king of beasts, has already been described (Pr 30:30). If you meditate on these three things, there are lessons of wisdom to be found (Job 12:7-10; Ps 107:43; 119:96). The greyhound is beautiful by speed, the he goat by grave leadership, and an invincible king by irresistible authority. Delight in these traits!

Agur the son of Jakeh wrote this chapter of Proverbs (Pr 30:1). But God inspired his words by three counts. First, all Scripture is inspired, and Proverbs is part of Scripture (II Tim 3:16-17). Second, these proverbs by Agur were a prophecy, a revelation of God’s wisdom by inspiration (Pr 30:1; II Pet 1:19-21). Third, he warned against adding to God’s words (Pr 30:5-6; Rev 22:18-19). Therefore, we read these words as from God Himself.

Most of Agur’s proverbs are lists of things (Pr 30:11-31). The list here is four things that are comely in their going – beautiful in their appearance, movements, and conduct (Pr 30:29-31). The lion, already mentioned in the previous verse, has a bold and majestic walk, showing confident pride; he fears no creature, and he does not turn away from any (Pr 30:30). He is the king of beasts and illustrates boldness, confidence, and fearlessness.

What is beautiful about the greyhound? The greyhound is a slender, streamlined dog, having loins tightly girded for exceptional running speed. Its name has nothing to do with color, but rather with being a coursing dog, a hound that hunts by sight and pursuit. English gentlemen and pharaohs owned them, with references dated before 2000 B.C. The typical male greyhound weighs 70 lbs., and it can run short distances near 45 mph.

The greyhound is elegant, easygoing, and gentle. With long legs and tail, compact muscles, slender profile, and alert appearance, the greyhound is attractive, fast, and agile. With eyesight to see small moving objects at up to one half mile away, it was created and bred to hunt by sight and chase. It is comely in its going, whether walking elegantly or agilely chasing down a rabbit in an open field, a task only a cheetah could match.

What is beautiful about the he goat? With a long beard, magnificent horns, and constant presence at the head of the flock, the he goat presents a strong picture of grave and sober leadership. It was common knowledge that he goats go at the front of the flock (Jer 50:8). And God used a he goat as the powerful symbol for Alexander the Great (Dan 8:5-8), which is very fitting, as the Macedonians revered the goat. The he goat is an excellent guide and protector, illustrating the beauty of a faithful, patriarchal leader.

What is beautiful about an invincible king? It is hard to appreciate the authority of a king, against whom there is no rising up, since there are no more kings, other than figureheads. National rulers today have little authority or power in comparison. They must answer to legislators and courts, have their college conduct scrutinized, beg the votes of peasants to remain in power, obtain permission for vacations, cooperate with the media, shake hands and kiss babies, grin and wave like a mannequin, and justify every decision to scorners.

Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon was the greatest king (Dan 2:37-40; Jer 27:6-7; 28:14; Ezek 26:7). He was not voted into office; he answered to no one but God; opponents did not draw rude cartoons about him; he did not shake hands or kiss babies. He could start a new religion on a whim and enforce it with death by fire on every politician in the world (Dan 3:1-7). If you offended him, even if you were in his cabinet, he would have you cut in pieces, your house leveled, and a great pile of dung erected in its place (Dan 2:5; 3:29).

Solomon and David were great kings in their own right (II Sam 8:1-6; I Kgs 2:12; 4:20-28). They understood the power of a king, and they wrote about it. He was to be feared as the lion is feared in the jungle (Pr 16:14-15; 19:12; 20:2; 24:21-22; Eccl 8:2-5; 10:4,20). And he was to suppress all evil in his realm (Pr 14:35; 16:10; 20:8,26; 29:14). We know by Agur’s words that the trait we are to admire is his invincibility and irresistibility, which is declared by the words, “Against whom there is no rising up.” This is a beautiful thing, no matter what the Declaration of Independence and Bill of Rights imply.

What lessons can be learned by this list from the natural creation? First, the Lord Jesus Christ fulfills all these traits perfectly; and second, Christians should also seek to fulfill them. It is not enough for you to be righteous: you should also be comely in going, by adding beauty and grace to every performance. It is by comely conduct in duties that Christians add glory and praise to their religion. Duty and righteousness are excellent, but the manner and spirit in which you do them adds to their beauty (Pr 22:11; Matt 5:16; I Cor 13:5; Gal 4:18; 5:6; Phil 1:27; Titus 2:1,9-10)! Christian, are you comely in going?

Are you bold and fearless like the lion in doing your Christian duties, regardless of opposition or threats (Pr 28:1; Job 32:1-14; Ps 119:98-100; Heb 13:6)? Are you quick to keep the commandments of God, like the greyhound (Ps 119:60; Gal 1:15-17)? Are you a leader by example in your marriage, family, and church, like the he goat (I Cor 16:13; Eph 4:16; 6:4)? Are you unmovable, like a great king, in defending God-ordained authority, righteousness, and the apostolic gospel (Pr 22:17-21; I Pet 3:15; Jude 1:3)?

The Lord Jesus Christ is the Lion of the tribe of Judah and turns away from none (Rev 5:5). He destroyed the works of the devil, who is described as a roaring lion (I John 3:8; I Pet 5:8). He is like the greyhound, for he is quick in understanding (Is 11:3) and coming quickly (Rev 2:5,16; 3:11; 22:7,12,20). He leads His people, as their Apostle, Bishop, and great High Priest, much like the he goat. And there is no rising up against Him, for He is King of kings, the Blessed and Only Potentate (I Tim 6:13-16)! Hallelujah! Amen!

Under Gods Command

Proverb 30:21 Under three things the earth trembles, under four it cannot bear up

The goal of wisdom is to please God and men (Pr 3:3-4; Luke 2:52), so Agur listed four kinds of people that are irritating and annoying. If you are wise, you will never be one, and you will reject those who are. Here are four kinds of people that disrupt the world, and you must learn to avoid being like them, being around them, or approving of them.

This chapter of Proverbs contains lists of things to teach wisdom (Pr 30:11-31). The wise prophet Agur used this method to teach inspired wisdom to Ithiel and Ucal (Pr 30:1-6). In this particular list, four kinds of people disquiet the earth – disturb the peace and pleasure of life. The earth cannot bear them; they are irritating and frustrating to most men.

Most men love a quiet life – one of peace, pleasure, and security. But that goal is ruined, if one of these four is near. You will be angered by their disrespectful and intolerable conduct. Relaxation and rest will be impossible, for they are bent on making life miserable for others, even though they never grasp how much they are despised.

The first is a “servant when he reigneth (ruled).” God made masters and servants, leaders and followers. When this divine order is altered, and a person God created to serve is put in authority, the power corrupts their weak character and makes them unbearable. Solomon despised this perversion of roles (Pr 19:10; Eccl 10:5-7). It is found today in labor unions, employee committees, some deacon boards, political polls, and spoiled children.

The second is a “fool when he is filled with meat.” Prosperity and pleasure are a curse to the fool, for they flatter his depraved soul and cause him to boast and offend. The best thing for a fool is a beating and starvation (Pr 20:4; 26:3). The worst thing you can give a fool is honor and kindness (Pr 19:10; 26:1,8). Such fools are found today in rebellious youth with pampered lives, athletes with excessive salaries, and actors with contracts.

The third is an “odious woman when she is married.” Here is a common curse to mankind – an irritating, overbearing, and obnoxious wife. Many men have had their lives ruined by these deplorable creatures. Solomon warned about her many times (Pr 11:22; 12:4; 19:13; 21:9,19; 25:24; 27:15-16). She will hide her ugly soul and character while dating in order to entrap a foolish man, but after marriage he will discover marital hell. It is wise and important for young men to let married men interview their dates.

The fourth is a “handmaid that is heir to her mistress.” A female servant could become heir of her mistress by legitimate service, earning the approval of her mistress, or by marrying her master (Gen 16:1-4). Either the prospect or the possession of the mistress’s position had a subverting effect. Though of low origin and character, the servant would swell in pride and haughtiness. If promotion comes, men must remember their humble beginnings and reject arrogance. Today you see excessive divorce settlements, haughty politicians from slums, critical employees with stock option plans, and estate battles.

These four kinds of people ruin a peaceful and pleasant life. You must examine yourself to see if you are like any one of them, and repent before God and men if you are. Do you seek or have a position above your God-given abilities? Does your foolishness come out when prospered or in pleasure? Are you an overbearing woman? How many good men and women love your company? And are you from humble origins? Then stay humble!

You must also identify such people around you and oppose them. Do not approve promoting employees over employers. Do not allow fools to enjoy honor or pleasure. Do everything you can to keep odious girls and women single. Protect foolish young men. And remind those from poverty that their promotion is by God’s grace (I Cor 4:7).

Under Gods Command 

Proverbs 30:16 the grave, the barren womb, land, which is never satisfied with water, and fire, which never says, ‘Enough!’

Discontentment is a horrible vice. It is the mark of a bloodsucker (Pr 30:15). Men who are never satisfied are compared here to four other things that are never satisfied. The grave, a barren womb, dry ground, and a raging fire illustrate the sin of discontentment.

Foolish man is never happy. He loves silver, and gets some; but he is not content, for he wants more (Ec 5:10). He marries a beautiful woman, but he lusts after others’ wives (Jer 5:8). Covetousness, a hideous sin, denies men contentment, peace, or satisfaction in life.

Men’s lusts continue to greedily crave and seek pleasure regardless of sinful indulgence. Their sinful fleshly lusts never reach satisfaction to turn to godliness or righteousness instead. They persist insatiably in their pursuit of vain fulfillment in the world’s pigpens.

The grave is never satisfied. No matter how many are buried today, cemeteries will take more tomorrow. It will have room for you when your turn. Do not worry about no room at this inn. Though death cuts men down by the thousands, there is room for more. The grave never says, “It is enough!” It has an insatiable desire for the bodies of men.

The barren womb is never satisfied. Today’s liberated women do not count – they are perverse. In Bible times, women craved children. Rachel said to her husband Jacob, “Give me children, or else I die” (Gen 30:1). The barren womb has an insatiable desire for children. God placed a longing need for children in women, and they crave them.

The earth that is not filled with water is never satisfied. Dry ground absorbs water applied to it and is still dry. The water disappears, and the ground demands more. Though much water is supplied, it yet wants more. The dry ground has an insatiable desire for water. Rain on such ground is quickly absorbed, and it needs much more. It is never filled.

The raging fire is never satisfied. As long as it can find combustible material, it will continue to burn. It never approaches a forest or house and stops due to lack of desire to burn. The raging fire has an insatiable desire to burn anything it can touch. It is not content with one acre of forest, for it will quickly burn another ten if not contained.

These four things – never satisfied and with insatiable desires – powerfully picture man’s sinful lusts. Some men are never content, though given much, for they always want more. They live frustrated and painful lives, with their eyes always looking for more (Pr 27:20).

Contentment leads to happiness, and it is easy to have, but few men find it. It has nothing to do with circumstances (Phil 4:12). It is a learned choice (Phil 4:11). To the hungry soul, every bitter thing is sweet (Pr 27:7). Be content by making God your portion (Gen 15:1; Ps 73:25-26; Heb 13:5-6). Great gain is godliness with contentment (I Tim 6:6).

Are you content, reader? Or are you frustrated? Why? God has given you much, and promised you more. What else could you possibly want? You are like the grave, the barren womb, the dry ground, and a raging fire, if you do not choose contentment today.


Proverbs 30:32 “If you have played the fool and exalted yourself, or if you have planned evil, clap your hand over your mouth!

Do not speak, unless you have something peaceful and righteous to say, for words of either pride or sin will produce greater evil and harm. If you are guilty for anything, let your words come out very carefully and very slowly. Let every word count for good.

If your conscience or others correct you for arrogance or wickedness, do not attempt to excuse or justify your sins. Humble yourself, confess your error, and thank the reprover. Do not add to your guilt or shame by opening your mouth and making matters worse.

Your mouth is the vent of your heart and mind. If you have not ruled your thoughts, at least rule your mouth by keeping your folly or wickedness to yourself, lest it harm those around you and spread your sin further. This rule is so valuable that even fools can be thought wise by restraining their words and remaining silent (Pr 17:27-28).

Your tongue can be a flame that fires the course of nature, and it is set on fire of hell (Jas 3:6). Words can be deadly poison (Jas 3:8). You hold the power of death and life in your mouth (Pr 18:21). Much talking always includes sin (Pr 10:19). You will give an account for every idle word (Matt 12:36), including filthy, foolish, and jesting words (Eph 5:3-7).

Doing foolishly in lifting up yourself is to be puffed up with pride and vaunting yourself against authority or over others. When you have foolishly gone this far, the best choice is to stop talking, otherwise provocative things will be said leading to a greater conflict. Pride is the cause of all fights (Pr 13:10), so the fewer arrogant words spoken the better.

Thinking evil is your imagination fantasizing or lusting for forbidden things, assuming evil motives for another person’s actions, purposing to rebel against authority, or related sins of the mind. Even the thought of foolishness is sin (Pr 24:9). If you have failed to rule your thoughts, you can still rule your mouth to keep your evil from spreading.

Laying your hand over your mouth is a Biblical expression for ending your speech and being silent. Job told his three friends to do this rather than continue their accusations against him (Job 21:5). Job did this himself when confronted by God (Job 40:4). It is what you should do when you feel pride welling up inside or sinful thoughts at work.

The context describes a great king’s authority (Pr 30:31). Wise men will not provoke him with fighting words, for he has the power to destroy (Pr 16:14; 19:12; 20:2; Ec 8:2-5; 10:4). This warning even includes thoughts or private conversations in your bedroom (Ec 10:20). Retorting against authority is folly, but especially against civil rulers (Tit 2:9).

The context also describes the certainty of a fight or war if wrath is pressed (Pr 30:33). A wise man is quick to hear and slow to speak, for he knows that anger does not work the righteousness of God (Jas 1:19-20). He knows that strife in the heart leads to confusion and every evil work, so he refuses to add grievous words to the fire (Pr 15:1; Ja 3:14-18).

The general lesson is valuable. Words take pride and evil imaginations further than intended, provoke others to respond in kind, are impossible to retract, and the damage is difficult to repair, as with offended brothers (Pr 18:19). Therefore, your tongue should be silent in your mouth until and unless there is something peaceful and godly to say.

When pride or evil whet the tongue, its sharp words pierce others, cutting them needlessly and/or starting a fight. It is so much better to choose the tongue of the wise, dealing grace and health to all who hear (Pr 12:18; 10:20-21; 16:24; Col 4:6; Eph 4:29).

What a peacemaker you could be, if you were always first to lay your hand over your mouth (Pr 15:1; 25:15). But alas, the fire that burns inside often forces release and causes damage (Ps 39:1-3). Be quick to hear and slow to speak to make peace (Jas 1:19-20).

Instead of conceited or corrupt speech, choose the gracious and learned tongue of Jesus Christ, Who spoke better than any man ever (Ps 45:2; Is 50:4; Lu 4:22; Jn 7:46). It is gracious and humble words that win the hearts even of kings (Pr 11:16; 22:11; Ec 10:12).

Under Gods Command

 Proverbs 30:10 “Do not slander a servant to his master, or he will curse you, and you will pay for it.

Accusations must be just and merciful, especially against the afflicted or oppressed, who cannot easily defend themselves. Unnecessary harshness could cause them to curse you, which will then bring God’s hard judgment on you. God’s religion under both testaments includes much compassion and mercy for the lowly, poor, weak, or oppressed.

The Bible throughout allows for servitude or slavery, though it protects servants or slaves by commanding just and kind treatment by masters. The Bible approves and governs both bond servants and hired servants. While legal servitude disturbs some, the confusion is usually due to one’s cultural upbringing, ignorance of the Bible and history, ignorance of servitude in other societies, and/or ignorance of the possible mutual economic benefits.

The God of the Bible, Jehovah by name, protects the lowly, poor, weak, and oppressed, and He commands that all others do the same. He protects orphans and widows (Ps 68:5; 82:1-4). He protects animals (Pr 12:10; Deut 22:6; 25:4). He demands that men speak up when they are able to help those who cannot defend themselves (Pr 24:11-12; 31:8-9).

Servants or slaves were a low class of men, easily afflicted or oppressed by masters, and with little protection by ordinary means of justice or redress. They depended on fairness and kindness from their masters, so God protected them by a variety of duties required of their masters (Lev 25:39-46; Deut 15:12-15; 23:15-16; 24:14-15; Col 4:1; etc.).

This proverb protects servants or slaves from those other than their masters or owners. False or harsh accusations from others in the household or those outside it could provoke their masters and lead to deprivation or punishment. The proverb condemns accusations that were slanderous (a false accusation), trivial (unnecessary), or harsh (unmerciful).

A servant or slave’s lowly status did not stop accusations of wrongdoing that were given honestly, for a major offence, and without prejudice or revenge. Respect of persons in judgment, either low or high, is wrong (Ex 23:3; Lev 19:15). The lowly do not deserve sympathy when guilty of crimes (Pr 6:30-31; Gen 21:25-26; Lev 19:17; I Sam 26:19).

How important is this matter? God defends and judges those with no power to protect themselves, so beware (Pr 22:22-23; 28:27; Deut 10:18; 15:9; Ps 10:14,18; 146:9). Deal carefully, judge lightly, and choose to err on the side of liberality and mercy, and God will bless you (Pr 19:17; 21:13; 22:16; Is 58:6-11). Do justly and love mercy (Mic 6:8).

Consider an example. Jacob moved his family to Egypt, where through a succession of kings they became servants of the Egyptians. The accusation was made that unless they were oppressed, they would become too numerous for the Egyptians (Ex 1:8-14). Israel cried unto the Lord, and He heard them (Ex 2:23-25). Think ten plagues, dead firstborn, a drowned army, and a plundered and ravaged nation! Be careful about accusing a servant!

Consider another example. The scribes and Pharisees, religious elite of the Jews, accused the lowly apostles to their Master Jesus (Matt 15:1-2). It had been better for them not to have left their homes that day. Jesus promptly and publicly took them to task for their hypocrisy and vain religion, shaming them before the multitude (Matt 15:3-11). When informed that the Pharisees were offended, He condemned them further (Matt 15:12-14)!

Consider another example. Judas Iscariot was a thief (John 12:6), and he conspired with the Jews against the Servant Jesus for the price of a servant (Matt 26:15; Ex 21:32). Jesus cursed Judas (Ps 109:6-20; Matt 18:7; 26:24), and he ended up without the money, swallowed up with guilt and grief, and a disemboweled suicide in a worthless field (Matt 27:3-10; Acts 1:16-20). Be careful about accusing a servant, especially the Son of God!

Consider another example. The Jews hated Jesus, and they despised and rejected Him, hid their faces from Him, and accused Him of horrible crimes before God (Is 53:3-4; Matt 9:34; 12:24; 26:65; John 8:48). But Almighty God leveled the city of Jerusalem to the ground because they so treated their holy Servant and Visitor (Luke 19:43-44). Be careful about accusing a servant, especially the Son of God! Kiss Him instead (Ps 2:12)!

To be sure of godliness, speak evil of no man (Tit 3:2). Worry more about the beam in your own eye than the mote in another’s (Matt 7:3-5). Love mercy over judgment (Jas 2:13; Matt 7:1-2). Remember the ten thousand talents God forgave you when considering the hundred pence owed you (Mat 18:21-35). Let love cover what it can (Pr 10:12; 17:9).

Do you understand Christian liberty? God has left many incidental matters of life to each believer’s choice or preference. You have no right to criticize or accuse about these choices. Paul wrote, “Who art thou that judgest another man’s servant? to his own master he standeth or falleth. Yea, he shall be holden up: for God is able to make him stand” (Rom 14:4). Does Solomon’s proverb extend beyond what you first thought? Amen!

Let every man or woman in a position of authority practice fairness and gentleness to fully keep the righteousness of God indicated by this proverb. Let no civil ruler oppress any under him (Eccl 5:8). Let every employer deal fairly (Col 4:1). Let every father avoid discouraging his children (Col 3:21). Let every husband honor his wife (I Pet 3:7). Let every pastor despise partiality or respect of persons (I Tim 5:21).

Christian reader, you are a servant of the Lord Jesus Christ. If you live godly in Christ Jesus, you will be persecuted (II Tim 3:12), and some will think they are pleasing God (Is 66:5). Hear your Master, “No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgment thou shalt condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD, and their righteousness is of me, saith the LORD” (Is 54:17).

Under Gods Command

Proverbs 30:4 Who has gone up to heaven and come down? Who has gathered up the wind in the hollow of his hands? Who has wrapped up the waters in his cloak? Who has established all the ends of the earth?  What is his name, and the name of his son?  Tell me if you know know!

Who can find wisdom? No man can! No man will! God must reveal wisdom to any man. Paul said, “For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God” (I Cor 2:11).

Rationalization or the scientific method is worthless for wisdom or truth. True knowledge and understanding are only by inspired revelation. Man knows nothing of importance without God revealing it to him. Do not trust men. Put all your trust in the LORD. Go to Him and His word for the hidden wisdom and mysteries of the universe (I Cor 2:6-10).

Proverbs 30 is an appendix to Solomon’s proverbs. Agur, a wise man, taught Ithiel and Ucal (Pr 30:1). His lessons are inspired wisdom, for they are called “the prophecy” (Pr 30:1; 31:1). He introduced his lessons by first confessing his great natural ignorance (Pr 30:2-3), then by proving man’s inability to find out God and wisdom (Pr 30:4), and finally by defining the absolute necessity and sufficiency of Scripture (Pr 30:5-6).

The seven rhetorical questions in this proverb prove no man can find out God or wisdom by human effort. The answer to each question is an obvious negative. No man has gone to heaven, or come back, or conquered the elements to learn the ways and wisdom of God. Agur forced Ithiel and Ucal to admit by force of reason there was no man. They could not name any man who had done such a thing, and they could not name his son.

Agur proceeded to teach that every inspired word of God is pure and necessary (Pr 30:5). Not a single word was to be deleted or degraded. Putting trust in God and His words was the surest defense against dangers in this world or the next. Furthermore, man’s words were not to be added, for this would corrupt God’s words, and He would be angry (Pr 30:6). If you do not have confidence in a word-perfect Bible, you are truly blind and lost.

The seven rhetorical questions are a device teaching man’s inability to discover the real truth and wisdom of the universe. Since knowledge and understanding are with God, what man has ascended up into heaven to learn them, or returned back to earth to teach them? No man! Having confessed his own ignorance (Pr 30:2-3), he used these questions to condemn all men as ignorant (Pr 30:4). Wisdom is beyond the reach of mortal men.

Consider three very similar questions. “O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out! For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been his counsellor? Or who hath first given to him, and it shall be recompensed unto him again? For of him, and through him, and to him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen” (Rom 11:33-36).

The seven questions are not simply answered with “God.” The first two questions are in the perfect tense, which precludes them from being a prophecy of Christ. Neither can they refer to God, for He fills heaven and earth (Jer 23:24). He had neither ascended nor descended, for He is altogether present in both places simultaneously. And what would His ascent or descent have to do with knowledge, understanding, and wisdom? Nothing!

The first two questions are also connected by the coordinating conjunction “or,” which positively indicates a hypothetical alternative. Did God ascend? Or did He descend? Applying the questions to God creates confusion. The questioning is rather rhetorical about man. No man had gone to heaven to get wisdom, nor had any man come from heaven with it. Agur taught Ithiel and Ucal man’s great dependence on God for wisdom.

He proceeded further to humiliate man in the face of God’s glorious creation. Who, like God, has the wisdom and power to control and harness the wind in his fists? No man! God proved Job’s inferior wisdom and power by a consideration of the wind (Job 37:14-27). And David and Jeremiah used the same impossibility (Ps 135:5-7; Jer 10:13; 51:16).

Who, like God, has the wisdom and power to gather large amounts of water in the clouds? No man! God proved Job’s inferior wisdom and power by a consideration of the water in clouds (Job 36:24-33; 37:11-24; 38:33-37). And David and Jeremiah used the same impossibility to leave man short of wisdom (Ps 135:5-7; 147:7-8; Jer 10:13; 51:16).

Who, like God, has the wisdom and power to establish all the ends of earth, to lay the foundation and build upon it? No man! God proved Job’s inferior wisdom and power by these very considerations (Job 38:4-7). And Solomon reasoned about wisdom’s great value through God’s use of it to create the world and settle the mountains (Pr 8:25-26).

Is there any such man? No, not one! Agur pressed further. If there is such a man, what is his son’s name? If a man had ascended to heaven and found wisdom, then surely it would be with his son. They had to answer in the negative. There is neither man nor son that knows or understands these things. They are too high and wonderful for man (Ps 131:1).

The seven questions are not simply answered with “God.” The middle three questions are true of God, but that is not his argument. You can see above that the first two questions create a hypothetical alternative. The last two questions create an unanswerable dilemma. What is learned by supplying “God” and “Jesus”? Nothing! Agur taught there is no man or son that has the wisdom of the blessed God, Who created all things by understanding.

Man has no knowledge or wisdom of his own, and he cannot find out God’s knowledge or wisdom by himself (Is 8:20). Agur knew it to be true of himself and all men, so he convinced his students by these rhetorical questions. Wisdom is a matter of revelation: God must give it by inspiration (Deut 29:29). And Agur will conclude his introduction by identifying that perfect wisdom in the inspired words of God’s scriptures (Pr 30:5-6)!

The wisdom of God is too high for man to reach (Job 11:5-12). Though he might look and search in many places, he will not find it by any natural means (Job 28:12-28). The wisdom of God is revealed supernaturally through inspiration, and then men have no need for trips to heaven or across the sea for it (Deut 30:11-14; Rom 10:6-8). No wonder David considered God’s word so very delightful and precious to him (Ps 19:7-11).

Those who see an allusion to eternal generation here have found only an illusion. Their desperate efforts to support Origen’s hallucination are again found wanting. God did not yet have a son, for the Word had not yet been made flesh (Luke 1:35; Jn 1:14). David and Isaiah knew God’s Son was future (Ps 89:19-37; Is 7:14; 9:6). As in the personification of wisdom (Pr 8:22-31), many seek mystical allusions where there are none.

The rhetorical questions are nonsensical, if they are merely answered with “God.” God and His name of Jehovah were well known by all three men (Pr 30:5,9). Agur did not teach Ithiel and Ucal that God had created the wind, clouds, and earth. They already knew that. He taught them that no man had wisdom close to that of the Creator God. It is our privilege and duty to see a dark saying here (Pr 1:6), not childish questioning.

Since only God has the infinite wisdom implied by our proverb, prudent men will value and treasure every word of His inspired Scriptures (Pr 30:5-6; Matt 4:4). Since every word is pure, you cannot take any away (Pr 30:5). And you are told not to add your words (Pr 30:6). Do not take away from them nor add to them (Deut 4:2; 12:32; Rev 22:18-19). Hold fast to a Bible that is word-perfect and keep every precept in it (Ps 119:128).

No mere man can ascend up to heaven, nor descend from it, to obtain wisdom. But Jesus descended and then ascended to sit at God’s right hand (John 3:13; Eph 4:9). He made all things by His power; by Him all things consist; and He upholds all things by the word of His power (John 1:3; Col 1:17; Heb 1:3). In Him are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge, and He has been made wisdom for each of the elect (Col 2:3; I Cor 1:30-31).