Proverbs 13:10 (NKJV) — 10 By pride comes nothing but strife, but with the well-advised is wisdom.
The source of strife. Pride produces nothing but strife. Wherever there is contention, pride is the source. When people are too proud to admit they are wrong or to accept rebuke gracefully, contention develops. The original contention between God and Lucifer was due to Lucifer’s pride. (See Isaiah 14:12-14; Ezekiel 28:17.) Pride may lead a person to give a bad report about another. It may produce gossip. It may provoke rebellion. Whatever its manifestation, pride is behind the strife.
Those who are well-advised (those who are wise) will avoid contention. They are quick to admit error and to accept rebuke. They refuse to give a bad report, to gossip, to rebel. They have learned that the greatest secret to being used by God is humility, while the greatest hindrance to being used by Him is pride. (See James 4:6.)
Proverbs 13:9 (NKJV) — 9 The light of the righteous rejoices, but the lamp of the wicked will be put out.
The righteous light and the wicked lamp. Light emanates from a source such as a lamp. A lamp is a source of light itself. What emanates from the life of a righteous person is joyous and affects others in an uplifting way. Light bears the same relationship to a lamp as fruit to a branch. For this purpose, we may compare the light of the righteous to the fruit of the Spirit. (See Galatians 5:22-23.) Such fruit is certainly joyous, having a positive impact both on the person who bears the fruit and others around that person. The source of the fruit is the Spirit of God within; the Spirit is also the source of the light that shines forth from a righteous person.
While the light of the righteous is alive, vibrant, rejoicing, the lamp – the original source – of the wicked shall be put out. It will be turned off. It will fail. The wicked do what they do by the power of their own efforts. They do not have the Spirit of God within them to empower them, to give them life and light. Jesus Christ is “the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world” (John 1:9). If a person does not have Christ within, that person does not have genuine light. (See Romans 8:9.) The lamp of the wicked, frail and feeble, is their own strength. But human efforts will fail. (See Zechariah 4:6.)
The Daily Wisdom posts are drawn from my book titled Ancient Wisdom for Today’s World: A Commentary on the Book of Proverbs. The book is published by Word Aflame Press and is available at pentecostalpublishing.com, amazon.com, barnesandnoble.com, and as an Apple Book.
Proverbs 13:8 (NKJV) — 8 The ransom of a man’s life is his riches, but the poor does not hear rebuke.
Undesirable consequences of riches. Riches can make a person a target for kidnappers, thieves, and lawsuits. Rich persons may be able to buy their way out of trouble with their money by paying off their enemies. But poor persons who have no money to speak of have very few concerns along these lines. They hear no rebuke or threats motivated by another person’s desire for their money.
Proverbs 13:7 (NKJV) — 7 There is one who makes himself rich, yet has nothing; and one who makes himself poor, yet has great riches.
False and true riches. This verse is a companion to Proverbs 11:24-25. Stinginess, though it may result in great financial wealth, robs one of all that is worthwhile. While generosity may deplete one’s bank account, it gives true riches.
Proverbs 13:6 (NKJV) — 6 Righteousness guards him whose way is blameless, but wickedness overthrows the sinner.
The source of preservation or destruction. The way of life an individual chooses will either preserve or destroy that person. From a spiritual perspective, there is no such thing as fate or luck.