Proverbs 13:25 (NKJV) — 25 The righteous eats to the satisfying of his soul, but the stomach of the wicked shall be in want.
The secret of satisfaction. Satisfaction or dissatisfaction are not matters of quantity, but of righteousness or wickedness. Those who are righteous will be content with what they have. (See Philippians 4:11; I Timothy 6:8.) Wicked persons will never be satisfied. They always crave for more. But God alone can satisfy the inner longings of the soul (Isaiah 55:1-3).
Proverbs 13:24 (NKJV) — 24 He who spares his rod hates his son, but he who loves him disciplines him promptly.
Tough love. Some parents deceive themselves into thinking they love their children too much to discipline them. But the father who refuses to discipline his children actually acts as if he hates them. He shows no concern for the development of their character. (See Proverbs 19:18; 22:15; 23:13-14; 29:15; Hebrews 12:6-11.) Parents who love their children will chasten them early in life. The person who receives no discipline while growing up will have little self-control and will be of shallow character.
Discipline does not mean beating or abuse. We can learn how to discipline our children appropriately by noting the following aspects of God’s chastening of His children. (1) He never leaves a question as to His love for His children. (2) While the discipline may be painful, the pain is never permanent. There is no injury. (3) He does not chasten in an emotional fit of anger, but out of a determination of what is best for the disobedient person. (4) He restores the offender back to fellowship with Him. (5) When the discipline has been rendered and forgiveness sought and granted, He never again brings up the offense. (6) The discipline is designed and intended to produce repentance, not rebellion.
Proverbs 13:23 (ESV) — 23 The fallow ground of the poor would yield much food, but it is swept away through injustice.
Industriousness and wastefulness. There is much productivity even in the land of the poor, but injustice often causes it to be destroyed or wasted. Even though some are poor, if they are wise they will not be wasteful. They will use all they have and make it produce the most possible. But one of the signs of a lack of justice is senseless waste.
Proverbs 13:22 (NKJV) — 22 A good man leaves an inheritance to his children’s children, but the wealth of the sinner is stored up for the righteous.
The inheritance of a good person and the sinner’s wealth. Good persons carefully conserve, use less than they produce, and spend less than they earn in order to leave an inheritance not only to their children but also to their grandchildren. This verse thus indicates the wisdom of saving and investing. The inheritance it speaks of probably also describes the lasting positive influence godly persons have, not only on their children but also upon their grandchildren. (See Proverbs 17:6.)
Materialism has so affected the thinking of people that a popular view of inheritance is expressed on a bumper sticker: “We’re spending our children’s inheritance.” The idea is to use up everything one has and to leave nothing behind. But righteous persons are concerned about more than just their personal gratification. They are more interested in raising up the foundations of many godly generations. (See Isaiah 58:12.)
On the other hand, when people disregard God and rob Him in order to amass wealth, God has a way of placing that wealth into the hands of those who are just. Only the righteous have an everlasting inheritance.
Proverbs 13:21 (NKJV) — 21 Evil pursues sinners, but to the righteous, good shall be repaid.
Sowing and reaping. This verse states the law of sowing and reaping as described in Galatians 6:7-9. Sinners will find they are pursued by the fruit of their sin. Those who do right will find good things come to them.
Proverbs 13:20 (NKJV) — 20 He who walks with wise men will be wise, but the companion of fools will be destroyed.
The importance of right friends. As the apostle Paul taught, wrong friends have a corrupting influence (I Corinthians 15:33). We tend to become like the people we admire and associate with and to participate in their activities. One of the wisest things we can do is to associate with people who personify what we wish to become. Association with wise people imparts wisdom. Association with fools will bring destruction.
Proverbs 13:19 (NKJV) — 19 A desire accomplished is sweet to the soul, but it is an abomination to fools to depart from evil.
The price for success is too great for the fool. To accomplish what one sets out to do is uplifting and encouraging. But fools do not achieve worthwhile spiritual goals because to do so they would have to depart from sin, and this they are unwilling to do. They actually would hate to turn from their evil lifestyle.
Proverbs 13:18 (NKJV) — 18 Poverty and shame will come to him who disdains correction, but he who regards a rebuke will be honored.
A key to success. Those who refuse to receive correction from others — those who think they know it all — will come to poverty and shame. Those who appreciate and respond positively to correction will be honored. There is a close relationship between one’s attitude toward reproof and success in life.
Proverbs 13:17 (NKJV) — 17 A wicked messenger falls into trouble, but a faithful ambassador brings health.
The importance of being a faithful representative. If people are unfaithful in representing others, they will cause and experience trouble. Those who are faithful and dependable as they represent others will contribute to the well-being of their employers or superiors. (See Proverbs 25:13.) This truth has important implications for our Christian witness, for we are ambassadors for Christ (II Corinthians 5:20; II Timothy 2:2).
One of the quickest and most effective ways for employers to discover whether their employees are faithful is to give them the responsibility of representing them in some manner. As they observe the manner in which they are represented, they can tell how employees would handle even greater responsibilities. Ideal ambassadors will conduct themselves exactly as their masters would have done
Proverbs 13:16 (NKJV) — 16 Every prudent man acts with knowledge, but a fool lays open his folly.
Prudent dealings. The mark of prudent persons is that they act with knowledge. They are not satisfied to deal with people or situations with only surface information. They act only when they have sufficient information. By contrast, fools are content to deal without sufficient knowledge, and as a result, their folly is made public.