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Dave Burnette's Commentary

Proverbs Chapter 22

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 Leadership (v 1-29)

Proverbs 22 Commentary 

(22:4) Honoring God - This general observation - that honoring and respecting the Lord brings benefits in this life - would have been especially applicable to an obedient Israelite living in Solomon's God-fearing kingdom. Nevertheless, some have been martyrs at a young age, and some have forfeited all their wealth for the sake of God's kingdom. The book of Proverbs describes life the way it should be. It does not dwell much on the exceptions. (For more on this concept, see the note on 3:16-17) 

(22:6) Developing Gifts - "The way he should go" means literally "according to his [the child's] way." If you have your own children, it is important as you are in the process of helping them choose the right path that you discern the differing paths for each child. In other words, recognize the differences in each child. The reason for doing this is so that in finding their own paths, children will stay close to the Lord. Parents naturally want to bring up all children alike or train them the same way, but parents should discover the individuality and special strengths that God has given each one. While we should not condone, overlook, or excuse self-will, each child has natural inclinations and gifts that parents can develop. By talking to teachers, other parents, and grandparents, we can better discern and develop the individual capabilities of each child. 

(22:6) Teaching Children - Many parents want to make all the choices for their children, but this hurts the children in the long run. When parents teach a child how to make appropriate decisions, they have the joy of watching the child grow in judgment and discernment. Parents then can worry less about having to watch every step the child takes. They know their children will remain on the right path because the children have made the choices themselves and learned from them. Teach your children to choose the right way. Like many proverbs, this is a general principle that usually achieves favorable results--it is not a promise. If you are a parent who has done your best to raise your children well but they have rebelled against God or you, stay close to God, trust his promises, and model your faith in front of your children. The end of the story has not yet been revealed. 

(22:7) Borrowing Money - Does this mean we should never borrow? No. but it warns us never to take on a loan without carefully examining our ability to repay it. A loan we can manage enables us; a loan we can't manage enslaves us. A borrower must realize that until the loan is repaid, he or she is a servant to the individual or institution that made it. 

(22:8) Leadership - Sometimes God intervenes and directly causes the demise of tyrants. More often, he uses other rulers to overthrow them or their own oppressed people to rebel against them. This proverb is a message of hope to people who must live and work under unjust authoritarian leaders. It is also a warning to those who enjoy ruling with an iron hand. If you are in a position of authority at church, work, or home, remember what happens to tyrants. Leadership through kindness is more effective and longer lasting than leadership by force. 

(22:12) God and Success - Those with the knowledge referred to here are those who live rightly and speak the truth. Living God's way takes discipline, determination, and hard work, but God protects and rewards those who make the commitment to follow him. The unfaithful may seem to have an easier time of it, but in the long run, their plans fail and their lives amount to nothing. You can't resist God and still expect lasting success. 

(22:13) Laziness - This proverb refers to an excuse a lazy person might use to avoid going to work. The excuse sounds silly to us, but that's often how our excuses sound to others. Don't rationalize laziness. Take your responsibilities seriousIv and get to work 

(22:15) Teaching Through Leadership - Young children often do foolish and dangerous things simply because they don't understand the consequences. Wisdom and common sense are not transferred by just being a good example. The wisdom a child learns must be taught consciously. Discipline and training take a variety of forms. Just as God trains and corrects us to make us better, parents must discipline their children to help them learn boundaries and how to tell good from bad. To see how God corrects us. read 31:1-12. 

(22:24-25) Godly Influence - People tend to become like those with whom they spend a lot of time. Unfortunately, negative characteristics and habits often rub off in your own life. The Bible exhorts us to be cautious in our choice of companions. Choose to spend time with people who build us up. 

(22:28) Godly Living - In Joshua 13-21, the Promised Land was divided and boundaries were marked out for each tribe. Moses had already warned the people that when they reached the Promised Land they shouldn't cheat their neighbors by moving landmarks that served as boundary markers, giving themselves more land and their neighbors less Deuteronomy 19:14: 27417.

Dave Burnette's Life Application

A Good Name

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 22. In our text today, we continue in words of Wisdom from the Lord. What catches my eye is verse 1, which says a Good Name is rather to be chosen than great riches. In applying, we see how integrity is not only Godly for a witness to our Heavenly Father but also a practical, profitable proverb. Recently our business received several jobs during a busy time in our industry. Our "Good Name" allowed us to receive these jobs as our old customers referred us to our new customers. Our goal has always been to Glorify the Lord in our business as a witness unto Him. Still, this practical application has profited my family and me in bringing this proverb to life. How about you? Do you choose a "Good Name" over your own personal gain? Let us learn from our text today to remember that a "Good Name" that comes from treating others right not only Glorifies our Lord but is also profitable as the Lord blesses those who put God first in all they say and do


Proverbs 22

Proverbs 22

 1A GOOD name is rather to be chosen than great riches, and loving favour rather than silver and gold.

 2The rich and poor meet together: the LORD is the maker of them all.

 3A prudent man foreseeth the evil, and hideth himself: but the simple pass on, and are punished.

 4By humility and the fear of the LORD are riches, and honour, and life.

 5Thorns and snares are in the way of the froward: he that doth keep his soul shall be far from them.

 6Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.

 7The rich ruleth over the poor, and the borrower is servant to the lender.

 8He that soweth iniquity shall reap vanity: and the rod of his anger shall fail.

 9He that hath a bountiful eye shall be blessed; for he giveth of his bread to the poor.

 10Cast out the scorner, and contention shall go out; yea, strife and reproach shall cease.

 11He that loveth pureness of heart, for the grace of his lips the king shall be his friend.

 12The eyes of the LORD preserve knowledge, and he overthroweth the words of the transgressor.

 13The slothful man saith, There is a lion without, I shall be slain in the streets.

 14The mouth of strange women is a deep pit: he that is abhorred of the LORD shall fall therein.

 15Foolishness is bound in the heart of a child; but the rod of correction shall drive it far from him.

 16He that oppresseth the poor to increase his riches, and he that giveth to the rich, shall surely come to want.

 17Bow down thine ear, and hear the words of the wise, and apply thine heart unto my knowledge.

 18For it is a pleasant thing if thou keep them within thee; they shall withal be fitted in thy lips.

 19That thy trust may be in the LORD, I have made known to thee this day, even to thee.

 20Have not I written to thee excellent things in counsels and knowledge,

 21That I might make thee know the certainty of the words of truth; that thou mightest answer the words of truth to them that send unto thee?

 22Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:

 23For the LORD will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them.

 24Make no friendship with an angry man; and with a furious man thou shalt not go:

 25Lest thou learn his ways, and get a snare to thy soul.

 26Be not thou one of them that strike hands, or of them that are sureties for debts.

 27If thou hast nothing to pay, why should he take away thy bed from under thee?

 28Remove not the ancient landmark, which thy fathers have set.

 29Seest thou a man diligent in his business? he shall stand before kings; he shall not stand before mean men.