Proverbs 10:1-5 A Wise Son

Proverbs of Solomon

 1The proverbs of Solomon:

   A wise son brings joy to his father,
   but a foolish son brings grief to his mother.

 2 Ill-gotten treasures have no lasting value,
   but righteousness delivers from death.

 3 The LORD does not let the righteous go hungry,
   but he thwarts the craving of the wicked.

 4 Lazy hands make for poverty,
   but diligent hands bring wealth.

 5 He who gathers crops in summer is a prudent son,
   but he who sleeps during harvest is a disgraceful son.

A Wise Son

At first glance the, the writing of Proverbs 10 seems like a list of unrelated truths.  It seems like the writer went around and asked for people’s favourite sayings and listed them al together in random order.  Upon closer examination we see that there is a structure, and the structure is arranged around themes.  The first theme is the wise son.  Verses 1 and 5 distinctly mention the son and the verses in between show his characteristics.  A wise child, daughters are to be included here, brings a relieved sigh from the lips of parents.  Parents try their best, but they are never quite sure how their children will turn out.  In fact, although Proverbs offers guidelines, it offers no guarantees.  I want to be a son who pursues God as the identifying principle of my life.  If I am such a son, I have a better chance of producing such a son.  I want my wife to pursue God with everything that she has.  If she is such a woman, our daughter is more likely to become such a woman.  In the scheme of God, he may bless us with riches, but if we cut corners and pursue schemes to be what our culture calls ‘success’ we will actually be fools by the terms of Proverbs.  True life is a life lived for God.  This is the example that we must set for our children.  If we communicate that church is boring, worship is dull, and Bible-reading is painful our children will find life elsewhere.  Involve children in the hard work that you do.  Draw them into family chores and your day job.  In so doing you set up a pattern that they are more likely to follow.  It is because we leave them without direction that they find no direction.  It is because we let them entertain themselves that they crave entertainment.  It is because we feed them junk that they crave junk to eat.  It is often because our souls are shallow and malnourished that they learn to escape and self-medicate. If we want children to be proud of, we must live lives incorporating our children in ways that they can be proud of.

Questions

  1. What does the passage describe as the result of laziness? 
  2. How does the LORD treat the wicked in this passage?
  3. What would make a Hebrew parent proud?
  4. What makes parents proud of children today?  What should?
  5. How are you passing on to your children what you want them to become?

 

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About Plymothian

I teach at Moody Bible Institute in Chicago. My interests include education, biblical studies, and spiritual formation. I have been married to Kelli since 1998 and we have two children, Daryl and Amelia. For recreation I like to run, play soccer, play board games, read and travel.
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