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Dave Burnette's Commentary

Proverbs Chapter 3

Written By: God through Inspiration
Penned By: Solomon, Agur, and Lemuel
Date Penned: (970-931 BC)
Overview: Wisdom to Teach People to Live Godly (c 1-31)
Theme: Wisdom for Young Men (c 1-9)
Message: Wisdom is Extremely Valuable (v 1-35)

Proverbs 3 Commentary 

(3:3)  Mercy and Truth - Mercy and truth are important character qualities. Both involve actions, but they start with attitudes. A merciful person not only feels love; he or she also acts faithfully and responsibly. A truthful person not only understands what is important and true; he or she also works hard to achieve justice for others. Thoughts and words are not always enough: sometimes what we do shows what we truly feel. Do your actions measure up to your attitudes? 

(3:5-6) Leaning on Jesus - Leaning has the sense of putting your whole weight on something, resting on and trusting in that person or thing. When we have an important decision to make, we sometimes feel that we can't trust anyone--even God. But God knows the best path for us. He is a better judge of what we need than we are! We must trust him completely in every choice we make. We should not omit careful thinking or belittle our God-given ability to reason, but we should not trust our own ideas to the exclusion of all others. We must not be wise in our own eyes (see 3:7). We should listen to and accept correction from God's Word and wise counselors. Bring your decisions to God in prayer, use the Bible as your guide, and then follow God's leading. He will direct your paths by both guiding and protecting you. 

(3:6) Acknowledging the Lord - To receive God's guidance, said Solomon, we must acknowledge God in all our ways. This means turning every area of life over to him. About a thousand years later, Jesus emphasized this same truth (Matthew 6:33). Examine your values and priorities. What is important to you? Where is God on that list? In what areas have you failed to acknowledge him? In many areas of your life, you may already acknowledge God, but the areas where you attempt to restrict or ignore his influence will cause you grief. If you make God a vital part of everything you do, he will guide you because you will be working to accomplish His purposes 

(3:9-10) Stewardship - This refers to the practice of giving for God's use of the first and best portion of the harvest (Deuteronomy 26:9-11). Many people give God their leftovers. If they can afford to donate anything after the bills are paid and their wants: are me they do so. These people may be sincere and contribute willingly, but their attitude is nonetheless backward. To give God the first part of our income demonstrates that he has first place in our lives and that our resources belong to him. We are only managers of God's resources. Giving to God first helps us conquer greed, prioritizes our role in contributing to God's kingdom work in the world, and opens us up to receive the special blessings he promises to those who put him and his purposes above all else. 

(3:11-12) Correction - Correction is a vital part of discipline, and to discipline means to teach and to train. The idea of discipline feels negative to many because some of the discipline they received growing up wasn't given by a loving person. God, however, is the source of all love. He doesn't punish us because he enjoys inflicting pain but because he is deeply concerned about our growth in him and wants us to develop in character and maturity. He knows that for us to become people of spiritual strength and integrity, we must discern between good and evil. His loving discipline enables us to do just that. 

(3:12) Patience - Sometimes we can't know when God has been disciplining us until we look back on the situation later. Not every calamity that happens to us comes directly from God, of course. But if we rebel against God and refuse to repent when he has identified some sin in our lives, he may allow guilt, crises, or bad experiences to bring us back to him. Sometimes, however, difficult times come even when we have no flagrant sin. Then, our response should be patience, remembering that God loves us, and confidence that he will show us what to do. 

(3:6-12) Wisdoms Blessings - Proverbs contain many strong statements about wisdom's many benefits, including long life, wealth, honor, and peace. If you aren't experiencing these benefits, does this mean you are short on wisdom? Not necessarily. Instead of guarantees, proverbs give general principles to make us think and reevaluate what we are doing. They are not written to be infallible promises. In a perfect world, wise behavior would always lead to these benefits. Even in our troubled world, living wisely usually results in obvious blessings- but not always. Sometimes sin intervenes, and some blessings will be delayed until Jesus returns to establish his eternal kingdom. That is why we must "walk by faith, not by sight" (2 Corinthians 5:7). But we can be sure that wisdom will ultimately lead to blessing. 

(3:27-28) Giving - If we ignore opportunities to do good to others, especially those who need help, we are being selfish, uncaring, and unjust. We must be helpful and generous to others not because of any reward we might receive but because doing so is the mark of a committed follower of God. The evidence of this kind of attitude is shown in actions, such as helping an elderly neighbor with yard work, visiting someone in the hospital, or buying a meal for a homeless person. Withholding what is in our power to give begins to create in us an attitude of greed and a lack of compassion. Be as eager to do good to others as you are to have good done to you. 

(3:30) Pick Your Battles - This verse implies that there is a time for fighting. Injustice must be combatted. sin resisted, and evil confronted wherever it appears. But don't waste time and energy on needless fights, arguing about trivial matters or personal inconvenience. Save your energy for the real battles against sin

Dave Burnette's Life Application

Wisdom's Wealth

Each day we walk through the Bible chapter by chapter making an application of our text to help us grow in the Lord. Many applications can be made from each day's text. Today, we continue with the Book of Proverbs with Chapter 3. In our text today, we see that wisdom is extremely valuable. When we apply wisdom to our lives we will gain the steps to success. In making applications, we see that making unwise decisions will cost us time and resources. Since the Lord knows the best path for our lives and has given us His instructions in His Word, the Bible, it would benefit us to follow the Instructions of Wisdom. How about you? Do you follow the instruction of the Lord? Let us learn from our text today that following wisdom will give us the shortest distance to the wealth of blessings that He has for us.


Proverbs 3

Proverbs 3

 1My son, forget not my law; but let thine heart keep my commandments:

 2For length of days, and long life, and peace, shall they add to thee.

 3Let not mercy and truth forsake thee: bind them about thy neck; write them upon the table of thine heart:

 4So shalt thou find favour and good understanding in the sight of God and man.

 5Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.

 6In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.

 7Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil.

 8It shall be health to thy navel, and marrow to thy bones.

 9Honour the LORD with thy substance, and with the firstfruits of all thine increase:

 10So shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst out with new wine.

 11My son, despise not the chastening of the LORD; neither be weary of his correction:

 12For whom the LORD loveth he correcteth; even as a father the son in whom he delighteth.

 13Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, and the man that getteth understanding.

 14For the merchandise of it is better than the merchandise of silver, and the gain thereof than fine gold.

 15She is more precious than rubies: and all the things thou canst desire are not to be compared unto her.

 16Length of days is in her right hand; and in her left hand riches and honour.

 17Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace.

 18She is a tree of life to them that lay hold upon her: and happy is every one that retaineth her.

 19The LORD by wisdom hath founded the earth; by understanding hath he established the heavens.

 20By his knowledge the depths are broken up, and the clouds drop down the dew.

 21My son, let not them depart from thine eyes: keep sound wisdom and discretion:

 22So shall they be life unto thy soul, and grace to thy neck.

 23Then shalt thou walk in thy way safely, and thy foot shall not stumble.

 24When thou liest down, thou shalt not be afraid: yea, thou shalt lie down, and thy sleep shall be sweet.

 25Be not afraid of sudden fear, neither of the desolation of the wicked, when it cometh.

 26For the LORD shall be thy confidence, and shall keep thy foot from being taken.

 27Withhold not good from them to whom it is due, when it is in the power of thine hand to do it.

 28Say not unto thy neighbour, Go, and come again, and to morrow I will give; when thou hast it by thee.

 29Devise not evil against thy neighbour, seeing he dwelleth securely by thee.

 30Strive not with a man without cause, if he have done thee no harm.

 31Envy thou not the oppressor, and choose none of his ways.

 32For the froward is abomination to the LORD: but his secret is with the righteous.

 33The curse of the LORD is in the house of the wicked: but he blesseth the habitation of the just.

 34Surely he scorneth the scorners: but he giveth grace unto the lowly.

 35The wise shall inherit glory: but shame shall be the promotion of fools.