Proverbs 16:25-33 Brain Over Brawn

There is a way that appears to be right,(AM)
    but in the end it leads to death.(AN)

26 The appetite of laborers works for them;
    their hunger drives them on.

27 A scoundrel(AO) plots evil,
    and on their lips it is like a scorching fire.(AP)

28 A perverse person stirs up conflict,(AQ)
    and a gossip separates close friends.(AR)

29 A violent person entices their neighbor
    and leads them down a path that is not good.(AS)

30 Whoever winks(AT) with their eye is plotting perversity;
    whoever purses their lips is bent on evil.

31 Gray hair is a crown of splendor;(AU)
    it is attained in the way of righteousness.

32 Better a patient person than a warrior,
    one with self-control than one who takes a city.

33 The lot is cast(AV) into the lap,
    but its every decision(AW) is from the Lord.

Brain Over Brawn

In Julia Donaldson’s book, the Gruffalo, a powerful theme is revisited.  The idea is that a small mouse can outwit the powerful Gruffalo and other predators who wish to eat him.  Proverbs reinforces this idea.  Of course, physical fitness is a benefit and shows good stewardship of what God has given.  However, if there is a choice between brawn and brains Proverbs chooses brains.  The FBI reads body language to be able to tell what powerful enemies are thnking and then can use that against them.  Many times in history a mighty army has been stalled by superior strategy on the part of an inferior force. 


  1. What does this passage say about intelligence compared to a warrior’s skill?
  2. How did people in the Bible use strategy to defeat overwhelming odds?
  3. To whom does God reveal superior strategy?
  4. In the lives of regular people in the West when do they fight when they could think?
  5. How does taking time to consult God rule out chance in conflict?

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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1 Response to Proverbs 16:25-33 Brain Over Brawn

  1. Carrie says:

    1. The passage states that intelligence wins over physical strength.
    2. People in the Bible used patience (when the Israelites walked around the city of Jericho for 7 days), mastery/skill (David defeating Goliath)
    3. God reveals superior strategy to those that live godly lives, have self-control and patience.
    4. Gangs, some criminals, some politicians, when athletes get caught up in emotion and start fights on the court/pitches
    5. God puts you on the right path and gives you patience and discernment. He helps take away the emotional response out of situations and allows you to use your mind and knowledge of The Word.

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