Proverbs Chapter 7
Proverbs 7:1 “My son, keep my words, and lay up my commandments with thee.”
Again, we see here the father’s love for the son in teaching him the ways of righteousness. It is just as important to remember them as it is to learn them. Learning what we never use is of no use to us. Learning of commandments that keep us out of trouble will also save our life.
Proverbs 7:2 “Keep my commandments, and live; and my law as the apple of thine eye.”
This expression refers to the pupil of the eye which, because it is the source of sight, is carefully protected. The son is to guard and protect his father’s teachings because they give him spiritual and moral sight.
Proverbs 7:3 “Bind them upon thy fingers, write them upon the table of thine heart.”
This is a call to give the truth of divine wisdom a permanent place in the mind and in conduct.
In Israel, it is not uncommon to write the Ten Commandments on tablets and wear them like rings on their fingers. The tables of our heart are the very place for all of God’s laws to be. The world might do away with our Bibles, but they could not do away with the things we have hidden in our heart.
Proverbs 7:4 “Say unto wisdom, Thou [art] my sister; and call understanding [thy] kinswoman:”
Wisdom should become part of our very being. We have said before that wisdom is a gift of God to us and is in our inner most being. Understanding and wisdom go hand in hand. If we are wise, we have understanding.
Proverbs 7:5 “That they may keep thee from the strange woman, from the stranger [which] flattereth with her words.”
This is a repeat of what we have been reading about the whorish woman. Perhaps the reason this is mentioned so many times is so that the young men will clearly remember these instructions.
Proverbs 7:6 “For at the window of my house I looked through my casement,”
The drama of seduction by the adulteress (introduced in v.5 and unfolding to verse 23), is described from the viewpoint on one who is watching from his window.
Proverbs 7:7 “And beheld among the simple ones, I discerned among the youths, a young man void of understanding,”
As we read (in chapter 1 verse 4), “To give subtilty to the simple, to the young man knowledge and discretion”.
The purpose is to impart discernment to the naïve and the ignorant. The root of “simple” is a word meaning “an open door,” an apt description of the undiscerning, who do not know what to keep in or out of their minds. This describes this young man void of understanding.
Proverbs 7:8-9 “Passing through the street near her corner; and he went the way to her house,” “In the twilight, in the evening, in the black and dark night:”
We see a picture here of someone observing from their window a young man who is not filled with the wisdom that we have been reading about, but a man who has no wisdom and understanding. He is a foolish man, spoken of as a simple man here (perhaps unlearned). He has not heeded the warnings about the harlot woman and he goes into her house.
Against the advice of (4:14-15), he put himself right in the harlot’s place. “Fleeing immorality” (1 Cor. 6;18), starts by not being in the harlot’s neighborhood at night.
Notice he believes that he is hidden by the darkness of the night. Many sins are committed in the dark and regretted in the light.
Proverbs 7:10 “And, behold, there met him a woman [with] the attire of a harlot, and subtil of heart.”
This is an unfair contest between the simple young man, who lacks wisdom and is void of the truth, and the evil woman, who knows her goal, but hides her true intentions.
You ladies take note. There is a way to dress that would appear to be the dress of a harlot. This Scripture does not describe it for us, but most of us know what it looks like. It is way too short, and very tight so that her form would show. The neck would be cut low as to show her bosom. Very little would be left to the imagination. She would be wearing way too much makeup and have flashy jewelry hanging all over her. A pretty good description, wouldn’t you say?
Now let us stop looking at her attire and look at her.
Proverbs 7:11-12 “(She [is] loud and stubborn; her feet abide not in her house:” “Now [is she] without, now in the streets, and lieth in wait at every corner.)”
She makes much noise to be seen and heard. She may be married but “her feet” does not abide in her own house.
In other words, she is a pick-up off the street.
These verses break the narrative to describe the woman’s modes of operation leading to her successful seduction of the simple man.
Proverbs 7:13 “So she caught him, and kissed him, [and] with an impudent face said unto him,”
We see here a very forward woman. This open display of her lust for him in kissing him in public is revolting.
Proverbs 7:14 “[I have] peace offerings with me; this day have I paid my vows.”
These peace offerings should not be involved in this type of rendezvous. Peace offerings were offered in the temple and a portion brought home to eat in a ceremonial supper, but not used as a bribe to get a man.
According to the law of peace offerings, the meat left over after the sacrifice was to be eaten before the end of the day. She appears very religious in making the invitation that the man joins her because she had made her offering and is bringing home the meat that must be eaten.
Proverbs 7:15 “Therefore came I forth to meet thee, diligently to seek thy face, and I have found thee.”
It is already night and the meal must be consumed. It cannot be left for morning. Such hypocrisy is concerned about the ceremonial law while aggressively seducing someone to violate God’s moral law.
Proverbs 7:16-17 “I have decked my bed with coverings of tapestry, with carved [works], with fine linen of Egypt.” “I have perfumed my bed with myrrh, aloes, and cinnamon.”
Fine linen was a sign of wealth. Here the solicitation is direct, as she describes the comfort of her bed with its aromatic spices.
Proverbs 7:18 “Come, let us take our fill of love until the morning: let us solace ourselves with loves.”
We see here a woman who planned ahead to sin. She had already prepared her bed before she ever saw this young foolish man. This is a way of life with her. Her sleeping arrangements would have cost her a lot of money to prepare. This linen of Egypt symbolizes righteousness of the world which is filthy rags. Linen “righteousness”. Egypt “world”. This myrrh was expensive perfume which was ordinarily for the wedding bed.
Adultery is not true love, but mere physical gratification. Love and lust have been exchanged here. No love exists, this is pure lust. The first thing that is wrong with this is that they are not married to each other.
Proverbs 7:19-20 “For the goodman [is] not at home, he is gone a long journey:” “He hath taken a bag of money with him, [and] will come home at the day appointed.”
Here she gives the simple man the assurance that there is no fear of discovery of their act, since her husband has taken a large sum of cash, needed because he will be away for a long time, returning at a set time and not before.
Proverbs 7:21 “With her much fair speech she caused him to yield, with the flattering of her lips she forced him.”
In a previous lesson, the young men were warned about not listening to this kind of woman with her flattering lips. Now we see in detail how she flatters and then convinces this foolish young man to come in unto her. She first says, “I am here by myself; my husband has gone and won’t be back till he spends all of that money he took with him”. He finally gives in to her flattering and goes in unto her.
When the location, time and setting were allowed, the seduction was easy.
Proverbs 7:22 “He goeth after her straightway, as an ox goeth to the slaughter, or as a fool to the correction of the stocks;”
An ox has no idea that he is going to be killed, until it actually happens. This is the way of this foolish man here. He cannot see the destruction that lies ahead.
Ignorant of the real danger and incapable of resistance, he quickly succumbs like a beast to be butchered or a criminal put in stocks.
Proverbs 7:23 “Till a dart strike through his liver; as a bird hasteth to the snare, and knoweth not that it [is] for his life.”
This has been the plot all along, to lure him as a bird is lured into a net and then killed. All the while he has no idea of the plot to kill him.
This refers to a mortal wound, as the liver represents the seat of life and the bird is snared to be eaten.
Proverbs 7:24 “Hearken unto me now therefore, O ye children, and attend to the words of my mouth.”
Here, again, is a warning not to go in unto a harlot.
The appropriate application of this drama is made in the admonition of these verses to avoid her deadly seduction.
Proverbs 7:25 “Let not thine heart decline to her ways, go not astray in her paths.”
A wise heart would not fall into this trap. This is just a warning to stay away from this evil woman. You would have to decline to get to her, for her place is in hell.
Proverbs 7:26 “For she hath cast down many wounded: yea, many strong [men] have been slain by her.”
It is not just the weak men who fall, but strong men in the wrong place at the wrong time with the wrong thoughts for the wrong reasons.
Paid adulteresses have ruined many lives. There are many men whose lives have been totally destroyed by visiting this type woman.
Proverbs 7:27 “Her house [is] the way to hell, going down to the chambers of death.”
There is no heavenly home for these women or the men they trick unless they repent and turn from their wicked ways. Death and destruction await her and her victims.
The wicked devise a plot of deception in which the innocent are captured and victimized like the one who is taken by death itself. “Sheol” is the place of death. For the wicked it is a place of no return, darkness, and torment.
Proverbs Chapter 7 Questions
1. In verse 2, what is to be kept as the apple of his eye?
2. How can we see the father’s love for the son?
3. What is this that is to be bound to the fingers?
4. Where is the most important place to put the commandments of God?
5. What are we to call understanding that shows how close it should be to us?
6. What is meant by strange woman?
7. What was seen through the window of his house?
8. This young man was void of what?
9. Why did the young man go, as it was getting dark, to this place?
10. What teaching has this young man forgotten?
11. Who met the young man?
12. How was she dressed?
13. Describe how you feel a harlot would be dressed.
14. Not her dress, but her own character gave a picture of her as well. Describe her.
15. What was the first thing she did when she saw him?
16. Tell what the fine linen and Egypt are symbolic of.
17. How do we know that this woman planned ahead to sin?
18. Where does she say her husband is?
19. How had she forced this young man to go into her home?
20. How is this young man compared to an ox?
21. What has been this evil woman’s plot all along?
22. In verse 24 and 25, what warning is repeated?
23. Who have already been slain by her?
24. What 2 things await this evil woman and her victims?