Proverbs 25:1-10: More pearls of wisdom.

‘’God delights in concealing things; scientists delight in discovering things.’’ The Message (2). God doesn’t ‘conceal’ from us what we need to know, but it remains the case that his thoughts and ways are too high for anyone to fully grasp (Romans 11:33-36). On the other hand, an earthly king gets ‘’glory’’ when he is given wisdom to ‘’search out a matter’’ (1 Kings 3:9; 4:34).

‘’Like the horizons for breadth and the ocean for depth, the understanding of a good leader is broad and deep.’’ The Message (3).

In government there may well be some ‘’wicked’’, self-serving people (4, 5). But when they are removed ‘’righteousness’’ can prevail. ‘’Remove impurities from the silver and the silversmith can craft a fine chalice; Remove the wicked from leadership and authority will be credible and God-honouring.’’ The Message. (Proverbs 16:12; 20:8, 26).

Someone said, ‘’If the Lord’s going to raise you up let Him raise you up; but whatever you do, don’t raise yourself up!’’ (1 Peter 5:6).People do have a natural tendency to promote themselves; to want the seats of honour. They hunger for position. When they do, they set themselves up for a demotion (Luke 14: 7-11). ‘’Don’t work yourself into the spotlight; don’t push your way into the place of prominence. It’s better to be promoted to a place of honour than face humiliation by being demoted.’’ The Message.

There is a warning in (8) that we should not be hasty in bringing an accusation against someone. It is likely that we do not know all the facts. We may get it all wrong and end up red-faced and embarrassed. People who jump to conclusions tend to hit the ground with a terrible thump! Also, we are better to first go to the person in question and seek to resolve the matter. In the case of a fellow-Christian this process is absolutely required (Matthew 18:15-17). ‘’Don’t jump to conclusions – there may be a perfectly good explanation for what you just saw.’’ The Message.

In a dispute with a neighbour, don’t betray a confidence in order to defend yourself (see also 11:13 and 20:19). You will be likely to lose one of life’s most treasured possessions – your reputation (22:1). ‘’In the heat of an argument, don’t betray confidences; Word is sure to get around, and no one will trust you.’’ The Message.

Prayer: Lord, once again I confess my lack of wisdom. How I hunger and thirst for yours.