Know evil, no evil

No [actual] evil, misfortune, or calamity shall come upon the righteous, but the wicked shall be filled with evil, misfortune, and calamity. (Proverbs Chapter 12, Amplified Bible)

Oh Lord, grant me the wisdom to know and avoid evil, that I may live a righteous life. I urgently need this blessing to avoid the misfortune and calamity that assail me.

Mining Proverbs

For more success, better health, greater happiness, and a finer path to eternity, mine the Book of Proverbs. It is a gold mine of buried wisdom.

Here are some tips that help me:

  • Read a chapter a day. There’s a chapter for each day of the month. Works out  nicely.
  • Consider yourself a fool in search of wisdom. It’s safe to say we all play the fool from time to time. This attitude will guard you from arrogance.
  • Pray every promise that you wish to claim. The promises of success in Proverbs are not automatic. On the other hand, the warnings against failure are automatic.
  • Start each reading of a chapter with prayer. Pray for a humble and open heart and mind. Thank God for providing you another opportunity to enter into the very heart of his Wisdom. Thank him for your access to the Book of Proverbs.
  • Read from the Amplified Bible. This translation has revealed insights into the Proverbs I had never found before despite having read through the book many, many times in other translations. I have my friend Benson Agbortogo to thank for this insight.
  • Start your day with this reading.
  • Read through the whole chapter, aloud if possible. Pause only to jot down the verse numbers of any particular verses that catch your attention, and why. Then come back to these verses and reflect on them, pray about them, ask for deeper insight. Write down the thoughts that come. Do so on the computer if possible. Blog them if you can.

These are some things that help me. Please feel free to add a comment with tips that work for you.

 

Simple one

22 How long, O simple ones [open to evil], will you love being simple? And the scoffers delight in scoffing and [self-confident] fools hate knowledge?

23 If you will turn (repent) and give heed to my reproof, behold, I [Wisdom] will pour out my spirit upon you, I will make my words known to you. (Proverbs 1, Amplified Bible)

I count myself among the simple ones but I do not love it. I do not delight in scoffing. I love knowledge rather than hate it. Even so the knowledge I need often escapes me. So I do repent. I will heed reproof. I want a continual flow of the spirit of wisdom. I want to know her words. The alternative is bone chilling.

24 Because I have called and you have refused [to answer], have stretched out my hand and no man has heeded it,

25 And you treated as nothing all my counsel and would accept none of my reproof,

26 I also will laugh at your calamity; I will mock when the thing comes that shall cause you terror and panic

27 When your panic comes as a storm and desolation and your calamity comes on as a whirlwind, when distress and anguish come upon you.

28 Then will they call upon me [Wisdom] but I will not answer; they will seek me early and diligently but they will not find me.

29 Because they hated knowledge and did not choose the reverent and worshipful fear of the Lord,

30 Would accept none of my counsel, and despised all my reproof,

31 Therefore shall they eat of the fruit of their own way and be satiated with their own devices.

32 For the backsliding of the simple shall slay them, and the careless ease of [self-confident] fools shall destroy them.

33 But whoso hearkens to me [Wisdom] shall dwell securely and in confident trust and shall be quiet, without fear or dread of evil. (Book of Proverbs, Chapter 1, Amplified Version)

Oh, Lord, please remind me to always give your Wisdom heads up attention and instant obedience.

Scoffer strike

Proverbs, Chapter 19, Verse 25 (Amplified Bible)

Strike a scoffer, and the simple will learn prudence; reprove a man of understanding, and he will increase in knowledge.

In US society strike a scoffer and you end up in jail. Reprove a man of understanding, and he may take you to court. Foolishness advances. Knowledge retreats. Lord, help me beat the odds. May I accept reproof. May I be a man of understanding, not a scoffing simpleton.

Blind scoffer

Proverbs, Chapter 14, Verse 6 (Amplified Bible)

A scoffer seeks Wisdom in vain [for his very attitude blinds and deafens him to it], but knowledge is easy to him who [being teachable] understands.

I do know a scoffer or two, but am I one? Don’t want to be blind and deaf to wisdom! Like a pastor I knew once said, “The awful thing about [self] deception is it’s so deceptive.”

Knowledge increases power

Proverbs 24

A wise man is strong and is better than a strong man, and a man of knowledge increases and strengthens his power;

For by wise counsel you can wage your war, and in an abundance of counselors there is victory and safety.

Lord, lead me to the abundance of counselors I need for victory and safety!