Proverbs 1:8

Proverbs 1:8 "My son, hear the instruction of thy father, and forsake not the law of thy mother:"

Verse 1 identifies the author of this Book of Wisdom and verse 8 identifies the primary recipient of this Book of Knowledge.  Solomon, the king of Israel wrote this book to his young son.  This fact is confirmed throughout the book with the phrase, “my son” being used a total of 23 times.  The king of Israel wanted the future king to be able to govern his people properly, which he knew would require wisdom.  This king was passionate about the need for leaders to possess wisdom.  When he assumed the throne years earlier, God offered him a blessing and told him to fill in the blank. Solomon’s response foreshadowed great political success – “give me now wisdom and knowledge, that I may go out and come in before this people: for who can judge this thy people, that is so great?” (2 Chronicles 1:10). 
By experience, Solomon knew that wisdom would propel his son to success.  He also rea…

Proverbs 1:7

Proverbs 1:7 "The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction."

Solomon’s second proverb in verse seven is another strategically placed truth intending to motivate the reader to read on.  In his first proverb (verses 5-6), Solomon suggests that a wise person will keep reading in order to keep learning.  In his second proverb (verse 7), Solomon suggests that a God-fearing person will keep reading in order to keep learning.  The person who makes his or her way through the Pages of Proverbs manifests wisdom as well as the fear of the Lord.  The person who gets off the Proverb Plane early manifests foolishness as well as irreverence for God.
A lack of respect for God will naturally lead to a lack of interest in God.  A lack of interest in God will lead to a lack of interest in learning about God.  A lack of interest in learning about God will naturally lead to a lack of knowledge.  The fear of God is the beginning of knowledge. 
A sacre…

Proverbs 1:6

Proverbs 1:5-6 "A wise man will hear, and will increase learning; and a man of understanding shall attain unto wise counsels: To understand a proverb, and the interpretation; the words of the wise, and their dark sayings."

Verses five and six make up the first proverb in Solomon’s amazing book of wisdom.  Together, the verses challenge the reader to keep reading.  Together, the verses motivate the listener to keep listening.  They paint the picture of a wise person intentionally spending time with the wise in order to become wise.  The reader contemplating abandoning the Book of Proverbs is forced to look at the canvas these two verses paint and see not only the wise man among the wise but the reader will also see the back of foolish man in the corner of the canvas walking away from the wise.  This proverb suggests that the failure to be persistent in the schoolroom of the wise makes the foolish more foolish.
Appropriate for this first proverb, we can explain its teaching by u…

Proverbs 1:5

Proverbs 1:5 "A wise man will hear, and will increase learning; and a man of understanding shall attain unto wise counsels:"

After outlining the three primary reasons for compiling a collection of his proverbs, Solomon shares his first proverb in verse 5.  As is often the case throughout the Book of Proverbs, this first proverb is separated into two verses in our English Bible.  As expected, this wise man uses his first proverb to motivate his readers to read on and listen up.
Instead of challenging his readers directly to keep reading, he offers them a proverb that indirectly challenges them to keep reading.  The son or student reading this first proverb would be faced with a big decision: keep reading and be considered a wise man or stop reading and be considered a foolish man.  This generic proverb strategically placed at the very beginning of the book was designed to keep the reader reading and listening.  If the reader was tempted to stop reading out of boredom, laziness …

Proverbs 1:4

Proverbs 1:4 "To give subtilty to the simple, to the young man knowledge and discretion."

The fourth and final reason behind Solomon’s compilation of Proverbs is the first verse to officially identify his target audience.  Here in verse four, the simple and the young man are identified as Solomon’s target audience.  They were his target audience not because of what they had to offer him but instead because of what he had to offer them.  Solomon didn’t compile his proverbs in order to make money or to get wealthy.  He didn’t share his wisdom in order to make friends or to become famous.  He offered his counsel not to get something but instead to give something.  He didn’t see the simple person as an easy way of making money nor did he see the young man as an easy way of selling books.  He saw them through the eyes of God – he saw them as souls in need of godly assistance.
How we see people reveals how God sees us.  If we see the uneducated and the inexperienced as easy targets …