Scripture reading – Proverbs 2
Proverbs 2 is our Scripture reading, and today’s devotional will consider two subjects, taken from four verses found in Proverbs 2:12-15. [As a reminder, words and phrases in brackets are the amplification and application of the author.]
“Be Wary of Liberties Some Leaders Champion” (Proverbs 2:12-13)
Solomon advised his son that godly wisdom will induce a man to be wary of two enemies of youth: Wicked men and their influence (Proverbs 2:12-15) and the Adulterous woman and her ways (Proverbs 2:16-19). For this study, I will limit my focus to the influence of wicked men.
Proverbs 2:12-13 – “To deliver [rescue; save] thee from the way [path; course of life] of the evil man [wicked], from the man that speaketh [tell; say] froward things [lies and perverseness];
13 Who leave [forsake; abandon; depart from] the paths [way; manner] of uprightness, to walk in the ways [path; course of life] of darkness [i.e. ignorance; sorrow];”
Solomon exhorted his son to embrace godly wisdom and allow righteous discernment to set the course of his life. Such wisdom directs youth to not only recognize the character of the ungodly, but to turn from their counsel [i.e. “froward things”].
The counsel of the wicked often comes from those who, to borrow an old adage, “should know better.” Solomon exhorted his son to be cautious of those who once knew and followed the “paths of uprightness,” but departed to paths of darkness (2:13). The Apostle Paul challenged Timothy with a similar admonition writing, “in the last days perilous times shall come” (2 Timothy 3:1), because there will be some who would have “a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof” (2 Timothy 3:5).
It seems, in every generation, there are leaders who forsake “the paths of uprightness” (2:13), and entice young people to indulge in “grey areas” previous generations had steered from out of concern they might inflame lusts and induce sinful passions. Some leaders preach liberty, boast an “enlightened life,” and draw youth away from preservation and discretion. They become, what Solomon cautioned: Men who have left the paths of the upright, only to lead others astray, and “walk in the way of darkness” (2:13).
Closing thought – Be careful my friend! The liberties you trivialize today may enslave your children, and your children’s children.
Copyright © Travis D. Smith
“An Admonition to Parents and Youth” (Proverbs 2:14-15)
Proverbs 2:14-15 – “Who [men who forsake the paths of righteousness] rejoice [glad; merry] to do evil [sin; wickedness], and delight [rejoice; glad] in the frowardness [perversity] of the wicked;
15 Whose ways [path; manner] are crooked [perverse; false; twisted], and they froward [depart; turn aside] in their paths [ways; trench; i.e. rut]:”
Solomon warned his son: The wicked are not content to pursue their sinful paths alone; they purpose to lure the innocent, the foolish, and naïve to follow in their sinful ways.
The wicked boast in their wickedness, and enjoy “the pleasures of sin for a season” (Hebrews 11:25), and there are those who delight in enticing youth to accompany them in their sinful ways.
Closing thought – Wise parents must impress upon their children Paul’s admonition to believers in Corinth (a wicked, immoral city of the 1st century):
1 Corinthians 15:33 – “Be not deceived [don’t be led astray]: evil communications [company and companions] corrupt [destroy; defile] good manners [morals; habits].”
Copyright © Travis D. Smith