Proverbs Chapter 28 Continued
Proverbs 28:13 “He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsaketh [them] shall have mercy.”
Sin must not be hidden but confessed.
In 1 John 1:8-9 we read, “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.” “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us [our] sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
If we cover our sins, God will not forgive them. God has mercy on whom He will. He loves us and forgives us if we confess and ask forgiveness.
Proverbs 28:14 “Happy [is] the man that feareth always: but he that hardeneth his heart shall fall into mischief.”
This is speaking of godly fear unto salvation. The only fear permissible is fear of the Lord. This is reverence, as we have said many times before.
This “hardening” is speaking of spiritual hardening of the heart. This is a refusal to repent and accept God’s pardon of sin through Jesus Christ. To reject God’s offer of forgiveness and cling to one’s sin is to accumulate more of God’s wrath and earn a severer judgment.
Just as Pharaoh of Egypt hardened his heart and had terrible consequences, hardening the heart causes us not to accept God; and that is disastrous.
If we harden our heart to God, it opens the door to Satan and all of his evil.
We will get into this more (in verse 18 below).
Proverbs 28:15 “[As] a roaring lion, and a ranging bear; [so is] a wicked ruler over the poor people.”
A roaring lion goes seeking whom he may devour. The poor have nothing to protect them and fall prey to this evil ruler.
A ranging bear and a lion will destroy the helpless. You may be sure the evil king will do no less to the poor.
Proverbs 28:16 “The prince that wanteth understanding [is] also a great oppressor: [but] he that hateth covetousness shall prolong [his] days.”
This first prince does not understand the needs of his people and would be an evil oppressor of his own people. The tyrannical leader who is covetous is foolish and short lived. The people would desire to overthrow this evil prince.
His opposite would be a prince who realizes there is a God over him, and he would be seeking to help and not harm his people. They will shout, “Long live the prince”.
Proverbs 28:17 “A man that doeth violence to the blood of [any] person shall flee to the pit; let no man stay him.”
We see in this verse, a cold blooded murderer. He has no peace at all: not of conscience or from the avenger. His guilt and guilty feelings shall follow him to his grave (pit).
Whosoever is inwardly tormented by the murder of someone takes to ceaseless flight to escape the avenger of blood and the punishment of his crime. The exhortation is to avoid helping a murderer with any support, refuge, or security against the vengeance which pursues him for the arm of justice.
He flees and finds no rest until the grave receives him.
We are told here not to comfort or help him. He is a first-degree murderer. He must pay for this terrible sin.
Proverbs 28:18 “Whoso walketh uprightly shall be saved: but [he that is] perverse [in his] ways shall fall at once.”
We have spoken many times in these lessons of how perverse sin is a sick sin. It generally has to do with unnatural sex. The walk of the upright is in the light, following in the path Jesus set before us. Perverse sin is so out of tune with God, that there is great punishment in this life, as well as in the next, for this sin.
In one instance, when they would not turn from their perversion, God said turn them over to a reprobate mind.
Romans 1:28 “And even as they did not like to retain God in [their] knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;”
2 Timothy 3:8 “Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith.”
Titus 1:16 “They profess that they know God; but in works they deny [him], being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate.”
Definition of Reprobate: One rejected by God (a sinful person; an individual with low morals or principles). To have strong disapproval of something (to condemn). Of God (to abandon or reject), to deny eternal bliss. To refuse (set aside). Rejected (cast off as worthless). Rejected by God (damned, sinful; Immoral).
God reveals his wrath against sin in several ways, either directly or indirectly. Directly: We can use the examples of the worldwide flood, Sodom and Gomorrah, the Babylonian captivity, and even the crucifixion of Jesus on the cross.
Indirectly: through the natural consequences of violating His universal moral law. One of the consequences is called the wrath of abandonment, which is removing restraint and letting people go to their sins.
Psalms 81:11-12 “But my people would not hearken to my voice; and Israel would none of me.” “So I gave them up unto their own hearts’ lust: [and] they walked in their own counsels.”
Prov.1 23-31 “Turn you at my reproof: behold, I will pour out my spirit unto you, I will make known my words unto you.” “Because I have called, and ye refused; I have stretched out my hand, and no man regarded;” “But ye have set at nought all my counsel, and would none of my reproof:” “I also will laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your fear cometh;” “When your fear cometh as desolation, and your destruction cometh as a whirlwind; when distress and anguish cometh upon you.” “Then shall they call upon me, but I will not answer; they shall seek me early, but they shall not find me:” “For that they hated knowledge, and did not choose the fear of the LORD:” “They would none of my counsel: they despised all my reproof.” “Therefore shall they eat of the fruit of their own way, and be filled with their own devices.”
Hosea 4:17 “Ephraim [is] joined to idols: let him alone.”
Ephraim was the largest and most influential of the northern 10 tribes, Ephraim’s name was often used as representative of the northern nation. This was an expression of God’s wrath of abandonment. When sinners reject Him and are bent on fulfilling their wicked purposes, God removes restraining grace and turns them over to the results of their own perverse choices. This kind of wrath (is that found in Romans 1-18-32).
Proverbs 28:19 “He that tilleth his land shall have plenty of bread: but he that followeth after vain [persons] shall have poverty enough.”
This reminds you again of the prodigal son who had plenty on his father’s farm, but he tired of the farm life and went to town. He spent all the money of his inheritance and wound up hungry.
Persons who are not afraid to work and grow a garden will always have plenty to eat, but vain living brings poverty.
Proverbs 28:20 “A faithful man shall abound with blessings: but he that maketh haste to be rich shall not be innocent.”
Blessings are the product of honest labor. Just as Abraham was rich in gold, silver, and cattle because he was blessed of God, God will bless you abundantly if you have the faith of Abraham. Abraham was saved and blessed by faith. We are blessed and saved by; faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.
Someone in a hurry to get rich is taking short cuts. His ways are not pleasing to God, because they are not honest. God will hold him responsible for the way he made his money. Wealth in itself is not evil. Our attitude toward the wealth can be very evil.
Proverbs 28:21 “To have respect of persons [is] not good: for, for a piece of bread [that] man will transgress.”
We see bribery associated with this. (piece of bread). Some judges accept bribes and release someone just because of favors or because of who they are. God expects us to treat all men fairly.
Proverbs 28:22 “He that hasteth to be rich [hath] an evil eye, and considereth not that poverty shall come upon him.”
We see in this man with the evil eye, a man who wants what belongs to others, a man who is motivated by greed. He has no regard for how he gets what someone else has just as long as he gets it soon.
Money or wealth gotten from evil ways and in a hurry has a way of leaving just as fast. Poverty is inevitable for this man, because God will not bless him.
Proverbs 28:23 “He that rebuketh a man afterwards shall find more favor than he that flattereth with the tongue.”
We see in this a spiritual rebuke of a person who is slipping away from God. A backslider who is helped back to God will thank you for it later.
Someone who flatters with the tongue and says everything is okay can do you great harm. Flattery has no value but reproof does, so it leads to gratitude.
Truth is always the best rule.
Proverbs 28:24 “Whoso robbeth his father or his mother, and saith, [It is] no transgression; the same [is] the companion of a destroyer.”
This man is not only a robber, but is a robber of his own flesh and blood. Thieves can think of good excuses, but there is no reason to rob.
To plunder one’s own family is an unthinkable crime, but it is worst yet when denied. This person not only destroys his parents’ living by taking their material goods, but breaks their hearts as well. He is not a builder, he is a destroyer.
Proverbs 28:25 “He that is of a proud heart stirreth up strife: but he that putteth his trust in the LORD shall be made fat.”
This is arrogance that satisfies itself at the expense of conflict with others and never knows the prosperity of humble trust in God.
A proud heart has to do with being puffed up with self. He stirs up strife because he feels no one has an opinion worth hearing but his own.
Trust goes farther than faith. It is when we rest in the Lord knowing that all is well. When I say “rest” here, I do not mean we stop working. I mean we have complete confidence in the Lord.
Proverbs 28:26 “He that trusteth in his own heart is a fool: but whoso walketh wisely, he shall be delivered.”
“Walketh” means continues to walk. We must trust in the living God. We cannot trust in ourselves. The wise in heart seek God.
Our own thoughts must be under subjection to God’s will in our life before we can trust in our heart. God’s laws must be written on our heart for us to have a trustworthy heart.
Proverbs 28:27 “He that giveth unto the poor shall not lack: but he that hideth his eyes shall have many a curse.”
God counts everything you give to the poor as if you were giving to Him. Everything you give to Him is multiplied and given right back to you. You cannot out give God. He that has something to give and does not is cursed of God. God loves a cheerful giver.
“Hideth his eyes”: is referring to one who does not respond to the needs of the poor.
Proverbs 28:28 “When the wicked rise, men hide themselves: but when they perish, the righteous increase.”
Wicked rulers cause great trouble to their people when they are in power. We spoke earlier how the ungodly rulers will be overthrown by their people. As we said (in verse 12), “when wicked people come into power, the righteous shout, groan and hide.
The righteous shall rise and take their place.
Proverbs 28 Continued Questions
- What should we do with our sins?
- Why is it important to forsake them?
- When we confess, what is the Lord faithful to do?
- Those who harden their heart fall into what?
- Who in Egypt was a good example of hardening his heart?
- In verse 14, what kind of fear is spoken of?
- What 2 things is a wicked ruler over the poor compared to?
- The prince that wanteth understanding is an __________.
- What happens to the prince that hates coveting?
- what is meant by fleeing to the pit?
- A man that doeth violence to the blood is a ____________.
- In verse 18, who shall be saved?
- What is perversion?
- What do we read in Romans 1:28 about perversion?
- Who shall have plenty of bread to eat?
- What New Testament story does verse 19 bring to mind?
- For a piece of _______man will transgress?
- What kind of an eye does a man who hastens to be rich have?
- In verse 23, what kind of rebuke is meant?
- If you rob your father and mother and make excuses for it, you are a what?
- In verse 25, a proud heart stirs up __________.
- A man who trusts in his own heart is a _____________.