Prov 7 “Simpleton or Mature?”

ImageRecently a post was written to young men/women about life after high school. It was interestingly similar to an instructional manual and could have come right out of Proverbs 7! Listen to some of the advice offered: To the gals: If a guy calls you at 2 AM to “hangout”…he is not boyfriend material. To guys and gals: go to church…not just because your parents instructed you to do it, but because in church God speaks and you need to hear his voice; now is the time to strengthen your relationship with God and follow his plan. To guys and gals:  keep your morals and standards high. The poster asked: Will it be tough? Absolutely. Will you feel like the minority? Absolutely. Should you change to fit in? Absolutely not! This poster has it “right on.”

After giving instruction to his son in chapter 6 along with a list of the things God hates, the  father in chapter 7 instructs his son (also applicable to daughters) about what God loves and that begins with being morally pure. Five times he uses the word “keep.” As a dad I implore you to “keep” my words and treasure them. “Keep” my commands and obey my instruction as you would the pupil of your eye. “Keep” wisdom so intimately close that she may “keep” you from the man/woman who fails to “keep” his/her feet at home. Why this concerted effort in using this word? The father knows that without this the adolescent before him will fall victim to the ways of the seducers of the world. Bob Deffinbaugh wrote: “Being simple is a stage in the development of every person, very much like adolescence….being simple is one short step from being a fool, so this critical period in life must be lived very carefully.” As a child still under the parent’s roof he/she is going through a stage and therefore must be instructed. It is not a sin to be simple but it is a sin to not grow from simpleton to maturity. That was the sin that the author of Hebrews spoke about: “But solid food is for the mature, whose perceptions are trained by practice to discern both good and evil.”

As Proverbs 7 closes there is a profound warning to those who ignore and become the fool:  “Do not let your heart turn aside to her ways – do not wander into her pathways; for she has brought down many fatally wounded, and all those she has slain are many.” The warning is clear. “when desire conceives, it gives birth to sin, and when sin is full grown, it gives birth to death. Do not be led astray” [James]

Beloved, perhaps you are the parent of a simpleton because of their age or because of their naiveté. How are your parenting skills holding up in this time? Will you choose to instruct those under you with the tool that God has given to you? “Every scripture is inspired by God and useful for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness.” The last is critical…training begins in the home so that the child of God may leave the nest with a pure and reverent conduct.

 

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