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Dave Burnette's Commentary

Proverbs Chapter 18

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 All People (c 10-24)
Message: Wisdoms Application (v 1-24)

Proverbs 18 Commentary 

(18:1) Principles - Our selfish desires cause us to demand our own way, and by doing so we abandon sound principles of conduct.

(18:8) Gossip - Ignoring rumors and gossip is as hard to do as turning down a delicious dessert. Taking just one bite of either one creates a taste for more. You can resist rumors the same way a determined dieter resists candy--never even open the box. If you don't nibble on the first bite of gossip, you can't take the second and the third. 

(18:11) Wealth - In imagining that their wealth is their strongest defense, rich people are sadly mistaken. Money cannot guarantee safety--it can lose its power in too many ways. The government may cease to back it; thieves may steal it; inflation may rob it of all value. But God never loses his power. We can always depend on him. Where do you look for security and safety--uncertain wealth or our always-faithful God? 

(18:13-17) Decisions - These concise statements give us three basic principles for making sound decisions: (1) Get the facts before making any decision; (2) be open to new ideas; and (3) make sure you hear both sides of any story before making judgments. All three principles center around seeking additional information. This is difficult work, but it avoids bias and prejudice. Don't judge before getting the facts. 

(18:22) God's Gift - This verse makes it clear that a married person should view his or her spouse as a great gift from God. Strong individuals are important, and so are strong marriages. God created marriage and pronounced it good. This is one of many passages in the Bible that affirm marriage as a joyful and good creation of God (Genesis 2:21-25; Proverbs 5:15=19). 

(18:23) Treating the Poor - This verse does not condone insulting those who are poor: it simply records an unfortunate fact of life. It is wrong for rich people to treat those who are in need with contempt and arrogance, and God will judge such actions severely (see 14:31) Without intervention, the needs of people who are poor will be unmet. What is your attitude toward those living in poverty? What are you doing to meet their needs? 

(18:24) Loneliness - We see loneliness everywhere--many people feel cut off and alienated from others. Being in a crowd just makes people more aware of their isolation. Lonely people don't need to hear "Have a nice day." They need friends who will stick close, and listen. care, and offer help when it is needed--in good times and bad. It is better to have one such friend than dozens of superficial acquaintances. Instead of wishing you could find a true friend, seek to become one. If you look around, you'll find people who need your friendship. Ask God to reveal them to you. and then take on the challenge of being a true friend yourself.

Dave Burnette's Life Application

Elevating Ourselves

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 18. In our text today, we see Wisdom as the Lord lays out many causes and effects of wise decisions. Today, there is a focus on foolishness. In making application, we see that those who put themselves before the instruction of the Lord give themselves over to foolishness. How about you? Have you made any foolish decisions in life? Let us learn from our text today to remember that foolishness comes when we elevate ourselves over the Lord and His Word instead of placing Him first in all that we do or say.


Proverbs 18

Proverbs 18

 1Through desire a man, having separated himself, seeketh and intermeddleth with all wisdom.

 2A fool hath no delight in understanding, but that his heart may discover itself.

 3When the wicked cometh, then cometh also contempt, and with ignominy reproach.

 4The words of a man's mouth are as deep waters, and the wellspring of wisdom as a flowing brook.

 5It is not good to accept the person of the wicked, to overthrow the righteous in judgment.

 6A fool's lips enter into contention, and his mouth calleth for strokes.

 7A fool's mouth is his destruction, and his lips are the snare of his soul.

 8The words of a talebearer are as wounds, and they go down into the innermost parts of the belly.

 9He also that is slothful in his work is brother to him that is a great waster.

 10The name of the LORD is a strong tower: the righteous runneth into it, and is safe.

 11The rich man's wealth is his strong city, and as an high wall in his own conceit.

 12Before destruction the heart of man is haughty, and before honour is humility.

 13He that answereth a matter before he heareth it, it is folly and shame unto him.

 14The spirit of a man will sustain his infirmity; but a wounded spirit who can bear?

 15The heart of the prudent getteth knowledge; and the ear of the wise seeketh knowledge.

 16A man's gift maketh room for him, and bringeth him before great men.

 17He that is first in his own cause seemeth just; but his neighbour cometh and searcheth him.

 18The lot causeth contentions to cease, and parteth between the mighty.

 19A brother offended is harder to be won than a strong city: and their contentions are like the bars of a castle.

 20A man's belly shall be satisfied with the fruit of his mouth; and with the increase of his lips shall he be filled.

 21Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.

 22Whoso findeth a wife findeth a good thing, and obtaineth favour of the LORD.

 23The poor useth intreaties; but the rich answereth roughly.

 24A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother.