Proverbs 3:11-26 answers the question: What defines the character of a spiritually minded man?
Let’s take a moment and be honest: It is our nature to be a critic, point out in others their faults and failures, while being blind to our own shortcomings (Matthew 7:1-5). Like the blinder-wearing mule pulling the farmer’s plow, we accept what we don’t see and make the assumption all is well. The reality is, the majority of people go through life unwilling to look honestly at their own spiritual reflection and address the deficits in their soul. Solomon gives us a “spiritual tape measure” in Proverbs 3:11-26–not to measure our height, but the spiritual depth of our souls. Like a lady who, in the privacy of her home looks into her mirror to see what others will see in public, Solomon invites us to judge our character by God’s standard. The question: Are you spiritually minded?
We noticed in June the first characteristic of a spiritually minded man: He accepts [with humility and a right heart attitude] the chastening of the Lord (3:11-12). Solomon writes:
Proverbs 3:11-12 – “My son, despise not [do not reject; refuse] the chastening [instruction; correction; discipline] of the LORD [Self-existent, Eternal God]; neither be weary [abhor; loathe] of His correction[reproof; rebuke; punishment]: 12 For whom the LORD loveth He correcteth [reproves; chastens]; even as a father the son in whom he delighteth [accepts; favors; pleased].”
The second characteristic of a spiritually minded man is: He pursues, values and enjoys the reward of godly wisdom (3:13-18). I will limit our focus to the first three of six proverbs.
1) A spiritually minded man is blessed because he knows the incomparable value of godly wisdom (3:13)!
Proverbs 3:13 – “Happy [blessed] is the man that findeth wisdom [experienced, skilled in the application of knowledge and truth], and the man that getteth understanding [discretion; discernment drawn from God’s Word & experience].”
Proverbs 3:14 – “For the merchandise [profit] of it [wisdom] is better than the merchandise of silver, and the gain [increase; gain] thereof than fine gold.”
3) A spiritually minded man knows that godly wisdom is more valuable than the most costly jewels.
Proverbs 3:15 – “She [wisdom] is more precious [excellent; honorable] than rubies [could also mean “pearl”]: and all the things thou canst desire are not to be compared unto her [wisdom].” [nothing you set your heart upon could be compared to wisdom]
Solomon’s coffers were full of gold, silver and precious jewels; his wealth exceeded our wildest imaginations. However, the king knew what too few us believe: Money and possessions cannot purchase joy nor fill the void of a foolish, spiritually bankrupt soul!
I close with the story of a man who attempted to fill the void in his soul with riches, but died a fool!
Luke 12:15-21 – “And he said unto them, Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man’s life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth. 16 And he spake a parable unto them, saying, The ground of a certain rich man brought forth plentifully: 17 And he thought within himself, saying, What shall I do, because I have no room where to bestow my fruits? 18 And he said, This will I do: I will pull down my barns, and build greater; and there will I bestow all my fruits and my goods. 19 And I will say to my soul, Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry. 20 But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided? 21 So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.”
How about you? What do you treasure? How much do you value godly wisdom?
Copyright 2014 – Travis D. Smith