THE MAN OF UNDERSTANDING
– Proverbs 27:1-27
Verses 1-6 – Boasting, pride, arrogance, leads to sorrow (vv. 1-2). The anger and wrath of the cruel is heavier on their own lives than is a stone over a wells mouth (vv. 3-4).
“The rabbins have a curious story on this subject, and it has been formed by the moderns into a fable. There were two persons, one covetous and the other envious, to whom a certain person promised to grant whatever they should ask; but double to him who should ask last. The covetous man would not ask first, because he wished to get the double portion, and the envious man would not make the first request because he could not bear the thoughts of thus benefiting his neighbor. However, at last he requested that one of his eyes should be taken out, in order that his neighbor might lose both.”
The rebuke of a friend is sweeter than the flattery of an enemy (vv. 5-6).
Verses 7-10 – “Prov. 27:7–10 These four proverbs each teach an element of wisdom that can stand on its own, but they have additional application when taken together. Verse 7 deals with honey, a pleasant treat, and v. 9 deals with oil and perfume, luxuries that here represent a banquet (an ancient host provided perfumed oils for his guests at a banquet). Also, v. 7 says that something bitter is sweet to a hungry man, while v. 9 speaks of the sweetness of earnest counsel. Together, vv. 7 and 9 suggest that it is good to have friends for the occasional party, but it is better yet to have a friend willing and able to give good advice. Verse 8 speaks of someone who wanders far from his home (his immediate family) and leaves it unprotected, while v. 10 concerns someone in need whose brother (his immediate family) is far away. Together, they teach that there are benefits in remaining close to family, but a person should not hesitate to turn to a true friend when in need.” From the ESV Study Bible pp. 1181 & 1182.
Verses 11-12 – A wise son is a blessing to his father. His words, and acts are the fruits, quite often, of the father’s teaching and life. With that in mind we know of examples where the teaching and life of the father never took root with some sons (v. 11).
The wise father and son both know how to examine things before proceeding forward with acts. The wise will hide themselves from evil; the “simple” will proceed into it (v. 12).
Verses 13-14 – More warning of co-signing a loan for someone; and having anything to do with foreign women – that is; foreign to the faith, morality, and righteousness.
Sometimes even social greetings and encounters must be measured by tact (v. 14).
Verses 15-16 – See Proverbs 19:13; 21:9. The type of woman mentioned here is one who is hard to get along with, and hard to hold on to.
Verses 17-18 – Not only is encouragement needed among men and women, but also teaching, correction, instruction, and exhortation (v. 17).
For verse 18; See Song of Solomon 8:12; 1 Corinthians 3:8: 9:7; 2 Timothy 2:6.
Verses 19-22 – Many of us have looked into a clear pool of water, and have seen our reflection. We know what we look like on the surface; but only God knows our heart (v. 19).
God knows the heart of man and a man. The foolish individual is one who will never learn, even though he/she might be beaten and bruised over and over; the foolishness will not depart from them (vv. 20-22).
Verses 23-27 – Those who have possessions, whether it be cattle, sheep, other material goods, homes and lands needs to realize they are not permanent; they are temporary. Because of this we must be wise in the maintenance and care of what God has entrusted to our care.
-Tim A Blankenship