How to Think Godly – Proverbs 12:5

The thoughts of the righteous are right,

But the counsels of the wicked are deceitful. – Proverbs 12:5

A man’s deliberations start in his mind, and then are later spoken, and this proverb deals with two types of men and their different thoughts. The righteous man is said to have thoughts that are right. Before a person like this even acts, they are said to have considered ideas rightly and in a godly way. The wicked person is said to have an opposite way of thinking, one of evil and deceit.

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Where do these different thought-lives come from? Do some people just naturally favour good or evil thoughts?

Well Psalm 14 (links to Bible Gateway) tells us that when God surveys the world He sees only corrupt people on the face of earth, with the exception of His people, the righteous. So this righteousness is found in those who are following God in the way He has said to. Back in that time, that would mean following God as the nation of Israel had been taught.

It follows then that a person’s nature and thoughts depend on their knowledge of and relationship with God. To be declared righteous they need to seek after God’s ways in His Word and trust in His mercy daily.

A person seeking after God probably won’t always have a righteous thought, yet he will love God’s Word and his thoughts will change to be more godly each day.

However, the man who disregards God, who says the LORD does not exist, has no moral obligation or desire to be godly. He will plan to do whatever suits him and furthers his good lot in life. This means he will consider how to manipulate and deceive people in order to get his way.

So what can we learn from this proverb?

God is the source of all goodness, wisdom, and righteousness. If we want to think in a way that honours God and helps our fellow man, we must rely on God’s Word and the Holy Spirit to change us. Seek after God through Jesus Christ, and your whole life will be aligned rightly.

God bless you. Thanks for reading! Pedrozki (Pete)

More Reading:

I’ve written about a similar passage here:  Good Desire, Bad Desire – Proverbs 11:23

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Thoughts or questions? Have your say in the comments section!

Note: All scripture is taken from Bible Gateway and is either the New King James Version or New International Version. I am using a commentary by John A. Kitchen for help with difficult concepts and words.

Main image is courtesy of Mr Tickle – Wachoo Wachoo Tribe Congressman and the “More Reading” image is courtesy of Vermont Historical Society / Flickr – Creative Commons

The Importance of a Good Wife – Proverbs 12:4

An excellent wife is the crown of her husband, but she who causes shame is like rottenness in his bones. – Proverbs 12:4

A husband may not be responsible for his wife’s actions, but he certainly is seen differently by others in light of her reputation and character. It is a great joy to see a married couple who work together, who highlight the strengths of their spouse and resolve issues well. This proverb speaks of the importance of a good wife and stresses that her character is crucial.

If you were to list what your idea of a good wife would be, what would you mention? The Bible provides a list in Proverbs 31 for us, and I’ll paraphrase some of the things mentioned. Check out the full list here in Proverbs 31:10-31 (the link goes to Bible Gateway). Do these characteristics match up with what you have in mind for a good wife?

  • Her husband trusts her and her actions. (vs. 11)
  • She does good, not evil. (vs.12)
  • She purchases materials and makes clothes. (vs.13)
  • She is an early riser in order to serve he family. (vs.15)
  • She is a profitable land investor. (vs. 16)
  • She has strong arms. (vs.17)
  • She cares for poor and needy people. (vs.20)
  • Her actions help make her husband famous. (vs. 23)
  • She speaks with wisdom and kindness. (vs.26)
  • She fears the LORD. (vs.30)
  • Her deeds are praised. (vs. 31)

Does anything in this list make you uneasy? I’m slightly scared of this type of woman! Surely only men are supposed to strengthen their arms? However King Lemuel, the writer of Proverbs 31, and highly influenced by his mother, thought differently (“The words of King Lemuel, the utterance which his mother taught him:” – Proverbs 31:1).
Unlike our world’s idea of a wife having a demeaning role in the home and in society, Proverbs portrays an extremely positive and powerful picture of a married woman who is godly and wise. This woman has strength in many areas. She supports her husband’s work and makes him the talk of the town. People assess her, nudge the lucky husband, and say, “You did well with her, buddy! (or say it under Facebook pics of her!)”
The proverb we are looking at in 12:4 speaks of this type of woman crowning the head of her husband. This crowning seems to speak of honour, headship, and glory – all things that lift up the husband in the eyes of his community. He is truly blessed 2334811445_29e4083a9c to have such a wonderful wife, who supports him and doesn’t supplant his authority. The opposite type of woman mentioned has intent to cause unrest and pain to her husband. Her actions bring his status among the community into disrepute, since, as the argument goes, what wise man would have married her? A man whose wife constantly makes unwise and spiteful decisions will find his efforts to get anywhere in life severely held up. The proverb speaks of the shameful wife rotting her spouse’s bones. He is hampered in his efforts to flourish in life.
In a world where self-purpose is all important this ideal stands in clear contrast. This excellent wife is satisfied with bringing about God’s and her husband’s glory by excelling in all things in her area of service.
I certainly want to seek such a woman for marriage; as of October, 2013, I’ve yet to marry.
What can we learn from this?
One thing we learn at least is the importance of whom we choose to marry. They will be our closest companion and will help us in our work/ministry. If our spouses seek to be destructive it will be easy as pie for them to bring us down. Your spouse will know you better than anyone else. If, however, they are godly and servant-hearted, your spouse will know how best to serve you. Choose wisely. Peace be with you.

Thanks for reading! – Pedrozki (Pete)

More Reading:

Proverbs speaks of this topic elsewhere: Proverbs 18:2
I’ve written about a similar passage here: Guaranteeing, Honour, and Forgiveness – Proverbs 11:15-17 (verse 16)

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Thoughts or questions? Have your say in the comments section!

Note: All scripture is taken from Bible Gateway and is either the New King James Version or New International Version. I am using a commentary by John A. Kitchen for help with difficult concepts and words.

Main image courtesy of Kwadwo Kwarte and the “More Reading” image is courtesy of Vermont Historical Society / Flickr – Creative Commons

Come under Instruction – Proverbs 12:1

Whoever loves instruction loves knowledge,

But he who hates correction is stupid.” – Proverbs 12:1

Do you enjoy being corrected? Does it just make your day when someone shows you a better way of doing something?

This proverb’s first line points to an attitude that seems to be rare among us Australians. We like to be our own boss and not have people laying down teaching on us. We are more likely to have the attitude of the second line.

Is this proverb in line with how life really works out? Lets follow the logic of this. Suppose a new person on the work-site comes ready to listen and be taught properly the way the site runs, does he learn better and quicker then if he hadn’t that good attitude?

It’s pretty clear that the new guy would have an easier time than if he had rejected any attempt at teaching or correction on how he did things. If he did that he would have only so long in that job!

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If he is wrong in an area, a good attitude would be to eagerly listen to wiser and more seasoned work-mates and to alter his method.

The person who refuses to follow instructions from people who know better will learn the lesson the hard way.

So, are many people walking around being stupid because they reject teaching? Apparently so, but I don’t think this proverb is saying a person loses brain cells for not listening. Instead, it’s as if they were stupid and brainless, for not accepting teaching, especially when it comes from God’s Word. Anyone with a brain should accept instruction.

If instruction needs to be sought after in order to get to knowledge, a person’s attitude is extremely important. They must come with an attitude of humility, confessing that they don’t know everything and could well be wrong in some way.

Now, what can we learn from this?

Because this is such an open proverb we can apply its truth to all aspects of our lives. Whether we are still under our fathers’ authority, or are under a boss or pastor, we have a great opportunity to be taught well. Those in charge probably have had much more experience and knowledge in life.  It is wise to listen to them.

It is the same with God’s Word. We can’t learn anything from it if we don’t come under its teaching and acknowledge its truth. We need to humble ourselves to be taught to fear the LORD. As Proverbs 1:7 says “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction.” Amen.

-Thanks for reading! Pedrozki (Pete)

Thoughts or questions? Have your say in the comments section!

Note: All scripture is taken from Bible Gateway and is the New King James Version. I am using a commentary by John A.Kitchen for help with difficult concepts and words.

Image courtesy of  zigzagpress