Proverbs Chapter 24
Proverbs 24:1-2 “Be not thou envious against evil men, neither desire to be with them.” “For their heart studieth destruction, and their lips talk of mischief.”
We see that we are not to want the way or the rewards of the evil man. We discussed before that fellowship with evil brings us guilt of their sin by association. Their ways are wicked ways.
Their desires are to destroy someone else and build themselves up by the hurt of others. They speak slanders and lies. Stay away from them before you learn their evil ways.
Proverbs 24:3-4 “Through wisdom is a house builded; and by understanding it is established:” “And by knowledge shall the chambers be filled with all precious and pleasant riches.”
A family or home is built upon faith in God. A family with God as its center is established and is not easily shaken. Pleasant and precious riches and are not necessarily money, but are the wealth of love, happiness, joy, and peace.
The family that centers their lives on God has spiritual blessings in abundance. They may not have gold and silver in this world, but they are indeed rich.
A house can refer to a physical structure, a family or even a dynasty.
Proverbs 24:5-6 “A wise man [is] strong; yea, a man of knowledge increaseth strength.” “For by wise counsel thou shalt make thy war: and in multitude of counsellors [there is] safety.”
Wisdom and wise counsel are associated with strength.
Wisdom from God helps us in all circumstances. Wisdom, (advice from God) would be especially useful in war. When the Israelites fought their wars, they won when the Lord led them in battle; but when they fought the battles in their own strength without his help, they failed and lost many lives. God must guide us in everything or we, too, will fail.
Proverbs 24:7 “Wisdom [is] too high for a fool: he openeth not his mouth in the gate.”
Wisdom is a gift from God. Wisdom and Godliness go hand in hand.
A fool is so busy being foolish that he does not even pray and seek wisdom. The wise could even counsel the fool, and the fool would not realize that it was good counsel.
The wise follow after God and his teaching, and the fool goes the way of the flesh.
Since he was speaking about “the gate”, we know that the leading minds were there debating the issues of life, and it was no place for fools.
Proverbs 24:8 “He that deviseth to do evil shall be called a mischievous person.”
A person who deviseth to do evil is a person who is planning some evil scheme to beat someone else. This evil person never tries to work and get ahead, he just figures up evil ways to trick others out of what they have worked for. In this, evil thoughts become evil deeds and show the mischievous ways of the evil one.
Proverbs 24:9 “The thought of foolishness [is] sin: and the scorner [is] an abomination to men.”
Jesus said to desire to sin in your heart is a sin just as if you had already committed the sin. The heart will be judged even more than the deeds of man.
The rejecters of good Christian principles are themselves rejected of the righteous. Those who turn their backs on God are a terrible reproach (abomination) to the righteous.
Proverbs 24:10 “[If] thou faint in the day of adversity, thy strength [is] small.”
It is easy to talk about strength when all is well. Perhaps, if we were tested as Peter was when Jesus was crucified, we might be afraid and run away.
When troubles and trials come, we need to be as Stephen and stand up for what is right. If our faith is not strong enough to stand through a few trials, I would ask, where is our faith?
Withstand the devil, and he will flee from you. Greater is He that is within me, than he that is in the world.
Proverbs 24:11 “If thou forbear to deliver [them that are] drawn unto death, and [those that are] ready to be slain;”
The danger here may be from unjust treatment or violence. Deliverance can either by giving a true testimony on their behalf, by providing what they need to survive, or by rescuing them from a fatal course.
We see here, someone who is in grave danger, and it is in your power to save them.
Proverbs 24:12 “If thou sayest, Behold, we knew it not; doth not he that pondereth the heart consider [it]? and he that keepeth thy soul, doth [not] he know [it]? and shall [not] he render to [every] man according to his works?”
You cannot say, “I don’t know about it.” You see, it is no good to tell a lie to God. God looks into your heart and knows that you have the opportunity to help.
God is the One who knows the truth about the motives of the heart and the excuses for failing to do what is right.
If it is in your power to help and you don’t help someone in desperate need, God will not hold you blameless. God knows the intents of your heart.
You will receive the same type of treatment from God that you have given your fellowman.
Proverbs 24:13 “My son, eat thou honey, because [it is] good; and the honeycomb, [which is] sweet to thy taste:”
We see in this “honey”, one of the foods promised the children of Israel as a blessing. They were to be given a land of milk and honey.
This is not a command to eat honey, but an analogy to seek the sweetness of wisdom’s rewards.
Proverbs 24:14 “So [shall] the knowledge of wisdom [be] unto thy soul: when thou hast found [it], then there shall be a reward, and thy expectation shall not be cut off.”
Wisdom from God and knowledge (accumulated learning), go hand in hand. A wise person seeks knowledge; and having found it, lives a better life. The reward is a fuller life here, making better decisions. A person who is wise and has accumulated knowledge can set goals for himself and carry them through.
They are prepared with God’s help to do mighty deeds. Their expectations are not cut off, because they have worked hard to achieve those goals.
In our last lesson, we learned (in 23:18), that there will be a time when all iniquities will be dealt with and divine justice will prevail. The righteous will live forever.
Proverbs 24:15-16 “Lay not wait, O wicked [man], against the dwelling of the righteous; spoil not his resting place:” “For a just [man] falleth seven times, and riseth up again: but the wicked shall fall into mischief.”
We see here, a plotting to destroy the dwelling place of the righteous and plotting this for evil gain. God warns against this type of endeavor.
A man’s home is his castle. A man fights harder to protect his home than anything else he has besides his God and his family. To attack a man at home is a dangerous thing to try.
The “seven times” simply means “often” or “many”. The plots of the wicked against the righteous though partially and temporarily successful shall not be ultimately successful; while the wicked will fall under God’s eternal judgment and find no help or deliverance.
This is just saying that men of God fall into problems many times, as well as the sinner. It rains on the just and the unjust.
The difference in the just man is that when troubles and hardships come, he rises above them and just keeps trusting in God. The wicked gives up and starts trying to start shortcuts to get out of whatever mess he is in.
Proverbs 24:17 “Rejoice not when thine enemy falleth, and let not thine heart be glad when he stumbleth:”
We are told over and over by Jesus to love our enemies and be good to those who despitefully use you. We should have love and compassion for anyone and everyone who are having problems, even if they proclaim to be our enemies.
Gloating over a fallen enemy can be more serious than the sin the enemy committed.
Proverbs 24:18 “Lest the LORD see [it], and it displease him, and he turn away his wrath from him.”
We are told also, to feed our enemies when they are hungry. We are not to get even when someone does us wrong. Vengeance is mine saith the Lord.
Proverbs Chapter 24 Questions
- Who in particular are we not to be envious of?
- Evil men’s hearts study destruction and their lips speak what?
- Why should we not fellowship with evil men?
- A family is built upon________ _________ _________.
- What are pleasant and precious riches?
- How can you be rich without money?
- By what shalt thou make war?
- Where is there safety in decision?
- When did the Israelites win in battle?
- What is too high for a fool?
- The wise follow after God and a fool follows after what?
- Who shall be called a mischievous person?
- The thought of foolishness is what?
- Who is the scorner an abomination to, in verse 9?
- If you faint in the day of adversity thy strength is ______.
- What martyr would it be nice to be like in the time of trouble?
- Who will know if you have an opportunity to save someone and do not?
- What will the Lord render to us?
- What food stuff is called good?
- Why can a wise person be more successful in carrying out their expectations?
- In verse 15, the wicked is warned not to do what?
- What is meant by “a just man falleth seven times and riseth up again”?
- Compare the wicked and just in troublesome times?
- How are we to feel when our enemy falls?
- Who does vengeance belong to?