On Immorality, Industriousness, Humility, and Parental Guidance

Proverbs 5-6


In Proverbs 5-6, we see a parent passing on his advice to his sons on a number of topics that still ring true today as when they were first penned.

Chapter 5 is dedicated to the topic of keeping oneself from immorality.  In particular, it is a father speaking to his son and telling him to not be tempted by the adulteress.  Since it is believed that Solomon was the one who is writing this, we can be pretty sure that he knew a thing or two about the temptation of immorality.

He had 1000 women in his harem (300 wives and 700 concubines).  From an immorality standpoint, he had plenty of access to pursue immorality.

The chapter has three sections.

  • 1-6 : advice from a father to a son about not being fooled by the allure of adultery
  • 7-14 : warning about the negative side effects of pursuing adultery
  • 15-23 : a plea for faithfulness to one’s first wife

The key verse to this chapter is found in verse 21.

For the ways of a man are before the eyes of the Lord,
And He watches all his paths.

One might think they are getting away with something by doing it in “secret”, but God sees everything and there is nothing that He doesn’t know about.  The phrase “I know what you did last … ” (you fill in the time / day / season) takes on a whole new meaning when you consider it in light of this.

——————–

Chapter 6 covers a number of topics and has five sections.

  • 1-5 : advice regarding proper speech and humility
  • 6-11 : a plea to give oneself to being industrious rather than being lazy
  • 12-15 : gives a description of a worthless, wicked person who lacks integrity in his speech and actions
  • 16-19 : 7 things the Lord hates
  • 20-35 : the benefits of following wisdom and righteous living and the dangers of not

The key verses are found in 16-19 which lists the 7 things the Lord hates and are an abomination.  These summarize the other topics in the chapter quite well.

  • Haughty eyes,
  • A lying tongue,
  • And hands that shed innocent blood,
  • A heart that devises wicked plans,
  • Feet that run rapidly to evil,
  • A false witness who utters lies,
  • And one who spreads strife among brothers.

The word haughty1 isn’t a word that gets used in most people’s everyday conversation.  It means “disdainfully proud; snobbish; scornfully arrogant; supercilious”.  The rest of the list is pretty self-explanatory.

Notice the various body parts listed and how they can be used to take part in doing things that the Lord hates: eyes, tongue, hands, heart (mind/will), and feet.  The tongue gets extra focus as there are three items that involve the tongue.

Consider these in relation to the greatest commandments as taught by Jesus, for in them each of these are addressed.

Mark 12:28-31 One of the scribes came and heard them arguing, and recognizing that He had answered them well, asked Him, “What commandment is the foremost of all?” 29 Jesus answered, “The foremost is, ‘HEAR, O ISRAEL! THE LORD OUR GOD IS ONE LORD; 30 AND YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND, AND WITH ALL YOUR STRENGTH. 31 The second is this, ‘YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”

With this idea of our whole body being a possible source of leading us down a path of action which the Lord hates or being used to honor God, I am reminded of a prayer I penned a couple of years ago.

LORD, Thank You for giving me

  • A mind to think, so that I can recognize whatever You would have me know and understand;
  • Eyes to see, so that I can visualize the world like You do;
  • Ears to hear, so that I can comprehend Your calling on my life;
  • A heart to love, so that I can spiritually and physically empathize with others;
  • Hands to do, so that I can demonstrate Your love and accomplish Your will on earth;
  • And feet to go, so that I can travel to whoever and wherever.

So that I can be Your disciple and ambassador here, while anticipating being there with You.

May Your will be done in Jesus name, Amen

I’ll close with one last quotation from Ezekiel that still applies today.

Ezekiel 18:30-32  “Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, each according to his conduct,” declares the Lord GOD. “Repent and turn away from all your transgressions, so that iniquity may not become a stumbling block to you.  31 Cast away from you all your transgressions which you have committed and make yourselves a new heart and a new spirit! For why will you die, O house of Israel?  32 For I have no pleasure in the death of anyone who dies,” declares the Lord GOD. “Therefore, repent and live.”


Topic mentioned in order of the number of verses where discussed.

Sexual Purity 28
Integrity 11
Futility of Folly 10
Family 6
Hard Work v. Laziness 6
Resist Evil 6
Humility v. Pride 3
Wisdom’s Benefits 3
God and Man 2
Life and Death 2
Proper Speech 2
Emotions 1
Friendship 1
Wealth and Poverty 1

1     “haughty.” Dictionary.com Unabridged. Random House, Inc. 19 Jun. 2014.

Proverbs - Chapters - 5-6
Proverbs - Chapters - 5-6
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