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Proverbs

Proverbs 30 The Burden of Agur

Jul 23rd, 2009 | By | Category: Proverbs, Verse by Verse --Studies led by Br. Frank Shallieu (Click on Book name)

“The man spake unto … Ithiel and Ucal.” The logical conclusion would be that Agur was talking to these two scholars, disciples, or friends, but based on the context, that is not the case. “Ithiel” means “God is with us.” “Ucal” means “I am strong.” In other words, Agur is saying, “God is with me, and I am speaking in His strength.” The superscription or heading indicates that Agur is giving an important message: a prophecy, a burden. “God is with me, and I am strong because of that. Therefore, the message is not mine but God’s.”

Before uttering the message, Agur said, “This message is not of me.” This reminds us of the Apostle Peter’s words: “Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost” (2 Pet. 1:20,21). Agur continues, “This message is not the product of my own capability. In fact, I am not an educated person.”

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Proverbs Chapter 2 Advice for the Child of God

Jul 7th, 2009 | By | Category: Proverbs, Verse by Verse --Studies led by Br. Frank Shallieu (Click on Book name)

Chapter 2 is largely a repetition of the principles enunciated in Chapter 1. The first chapter begins with the call of God, which is available to all mankind through nature. “The heavens declare the glory of God” in international language (Psa. 19:1). No one has an excuse for not being aware of God’s existence because all nature speaks. The hand that made us is divine; the stars sing as they shine.

Chapter 1 goes on to show the development of the Christian, the various steps that are to follow consecration. Chapter 2, on the other hand, starts with those who have already made a consecration. The consecrated are addressed as “my son” (or “my daughter”). Chapter 2 tells us that it is one thing to consecrate—to believe that there is a God and that the Bible is His Word—but more is required. One must “receive … [God’s] words” and “hide … [His] commandments” (Prov. 2:1).

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Proverbs Chapter 9

Jun 30th, 2009 | By | Category: Proverbs, Verse by Verse --Studies led by Br. Frank Shallieu (Click on Book name)

In the Book of Proverbs, two women are very noticeable. (Similarly, the Song of Solomon features two especially prominent women.) In Proverbs, one is the true woman, leading to life, and the other is the false woman, leading to extinction. The false woman, who is worldly or Satanic wisdom—a very dangerous type of wisdom—shows her face only occasionally in different chapters.

The Book of Proverbs does two things: it shows (1) what wisdom is and (2) how to attain it. We are especially interested in the latter. True wisdom is reflected in the face of Jesus, “who … is made unto us wisdom” (1 Cor. 1:30).

A note of pathos permeates the Book of Proverbs. For those who do attain the true wisdom, there will be joy evermore.

The Book of Proverbs contains very deep thinking. It is difficult to teach that which is very deep. The proverbs are presented from the standpoint of experience, scholastic understanding, the study of fallen human nature, etc.

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Overview of Proverbs and Proverbs Chapter 1:1-7

Jun 30th, 2009 | By | Category: Proverbs, Verse by Verse --Studies led by Br. Frank Shallieu (Click on Book name)

Nearly all Bible scholars speak of the proverbs as being natural wisdom, but they are both natural and spiritual. The spiritual wisdom is usually overlooked. In fact, the proverbs are so meaty and pithy that the theme is often not discerned. Therefore, in approaching this subject, we must be careful of semantics. For instance, in the first seven verses, “knowledge” is described in various ways: wisdom, instruction, understanding, subtlety, counsel—many of these are synonyms of wisdom. It is helpful to know the distinctions between these words according to the dictionary and in the Hebrew. The King James Version is a good translation for these verses.

The main theme of the Book of Proverbs is wisdom. The Gospels, on the other hand, are about love and mercy. When Jesus came, he brought the gospel of love. When Moses was on the scene, he brought statutes, ie, God’s justice. The power of God is shown in the accounts of the Flood, the opening of the Red Sea, and the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah. Judgment was rendered against evildoers in these events.

In reading the New Testament, Christians often say, “God is love.” And the Apostle John did say this, for love is the desired plateau of development for the Christian. The Apostle Paul mentioned three progressive steps: faith, hope, and love. In 2 Peter 1:5–7 the Apostle Peter listed eight steps or qualities to be added to faith, the last one being love. Although the Book of Proverbs cannot be equated with 1 Corinthians 13 or the Sermon on the Mount, it is interesting to note that in the Tabernacle, which illustrates the four attributes in the Most Holy, the Shekinah light, picturing wisdom, represents God. And light is wisdom, intelligence.

Is Proverbs 1:1–7 sequential? in ascending order of importance? in descending order? Just seven principal ingredients? It is both sequential and an ascending order of importance.

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Proverbs Chapter 8

Jun 28th, 2009 | By | Category: Proverbs, Verse by Verse --Studies led by Br. Frank Shallieu (Click on Book name)

Solomon wrote 3,000 proverbs late in life (1 Kings 4:32). The book warns against the very dangers Solomon tasted: lust for women, desire for riches, etc. He had 1,000 wives, he loved horses, and he was probably the richest man in the world. He had wisdom but not along the lines that he discussed in the Book of Proverbs. Later he saw that all is vanity, that the acquisition of material things is meaningless if not predicated upon the fear (reverence) of the Lord and obedience to the knowledge acquired. God ultimately blessed Solomon in that when Solomon came to his senses, the advice he could give was a form of repentance. The same principle applies to Elihu, who wrote the Book of Job based on his contrition for his lack of wisdom in rebuking Job. In both cases the Lord blessed the writing by including it as part of Holy Writ. Hence Solomon gives sound advice in the Book of Proverbs. Some of the advice is along literal lines, and some advice is spiritual. However, most of the knowledge and understanding are pragmatic (practical).

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