I post papers I have written, some during my graduate and post-graduate studies, some in response to other papers, and some written for other purposes like Sunday school classes or Bible studies. I also post observations on whatever comes to my mind and videos from teaching sessions.
Proverbs 15:14 (NKJV) — 14 The heart of him who has understanding seeks knowledge, But the mouth of fools feeds on foolishness.
Feeding on knowledge or foolishness. It is a sign of understanding to seek after knowledge. Fools are content, however, to mouth empty foolishness, to carry on frothy, meaningless, unproductive conversations.
Proverbs 15:13 (NKJV) — 13 A merry heart makes a cheerful countenance, But by sorrow of the heart the spirit is broken.
What the countenance reveals. It is often possible to discern the condition of someone’s heart by observing that person’s countenance. When the heart is merry, the countenance is cheerful. Cheerfulness is more than excitement; it includes peace, contentment, and joy. But the spirit is broken by a sorrowful heart, which is usually reflected on the countenance as well.
Eight years ago today, on September 28, 2021, Susan and I were married at The Sanctuary UPC in Hazelwood, Missouri. We are deeply grateful to our Lord for His blessings and the peaceful and happy years we have enjoyed.
We said our wedding vows before three important spiritual leaders in our lives: Susan’s pastor, Garry Tracy; my pastor, Timothy Dugas; and the general superintendent for the United Pentecostal Church International, David K. Bernard. Scott Graham, now the general secretary of the United Pentecostal Church International, served as the master of ceremonies for our reception, and Terry Gunn, one of my best friends, provided excellent musical leadership.
We believe our steps have been ordered by the Lord from the beginning until today.
“A man’s heart plans his way, but the Lord directs his step” (Proverbs 16:9).
Proverbs 15:12 (NKJV) — 12 A scoffer does not love one who corrects him, Nor will he go to the wise.
The danger ofcounseling only with one’s peers. A scoffer hates to be corrected, and thus will not go to the wise for advice. Scoffers go only to those they know will agree with them and approve their actions. This was the error of Rehoboam, Solomon’s son, which resulted in the revolt of the ten northern tribes. (See I Kings 12:6-11.) For this reason, it is important that parents keep the lines of communication open with their children; otherwise, their children will tend to seek and accept opinions only from their peers, which will frequently be wrong counsel.
Proverbs 15:11 (NKJV) — 11 Hell and Destruction are before the Lord; So how much more the hearts of the sons of men.
The omnipresence and omniscience of God. There is nothing of which God is unaware. He is fully aware of the spirit world and the status of those who have died, and He is certainly aware of all that is in the hearts of people. There is no place where God is not; this attribute is His omnipresence. There is nothing God does not know; this attribute is His omniscience. (See Psalm 139:1-12; Jeremiah 23:23-24.)
Proverbs 15:10 (NKJV) — 10 Harsh discipline is for him who forsakes the way, And he who hates correction will die.
When correction is grievous. Severe discipline awaits those who forsake God’s way. Correction antagonizes only those who have no desire to do right; those who forsake the right way and refuse to be corrected chose the way of death.
Proverbs 15:8–9 (NKJV) — 8 The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord, But the prayer of the upright is His delight. 9 The way of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord, But He loves him who follows righteousness.
Abominable ways and sacrifices. God has no pleasure in gifts from ungodly people, for He has no pleasure in their motives (ways). (See Deuteronomy 23:18; Proverbs 28:9.) But just as God abhors the sacrifices of the wicked because He hates their ways, He delights in the prayers of the righteous because He loves their way of life. If for no other reason, this truth should be a motivation to prayer: it brings delight to God.
Proverbs 15:7 (NKJV) — 7 The lips of the wise disperse knowledge, But the heart of the fool does not do so.
Wise lips, foolish hearts. As Jesus taught, it is from the abundance of the heart that the mouth speaks (Matthew 12:34). The lips of the wise disperse knowledge because knowledge is in their hearts. But the heart of the fool is void of knowledge; therefore his lips cannot produce it. A wise heart and foolish lips are not companions, nor are a foolish heart and wise lips.
Proverbs 15:6 (NKJV) — 6 In the house of the righteous there is much treasure, But in the revenue of the wicked is trouble.
True treasure. The righteous are truly rich. They possess riches that cannot be taken away, the most important of which is eternal life. Also included in this lasting wealth are fellowship with God, peace of mind, the genuine fruit of the Spirit, purpose, and the family of God. None of these things can be stolen or destroyed. (See Proverbs 10:22; Matthew 6:19-21.) But trouble accompanies what is gained wickedly, dishonestly, or violently. There is a blessing on the income of those who honor God and a curse on the income of those who fail to honor Him. (See Malachi 3:8-12.)
Proverbs 15:5 (NKJV) — 5 A fool despises his father’s instruction, But he who receives correction is prudent.
Handling a father’s reproof. Those who despise their father’s instruction are fools. A sign of prudence is to regard reproof. Even when the father is not right, it is important to consider his words carefully and respond respectfully. A father can be wrong, and there may be cases when children cannot act on their father’s instruction because it contradicts God’s Word. (See Matthew 10:34-36.) But even if the father cannot be obeyed because his instructions are ungodly, he must be honored because he is the father. (See Exodus 20:12.) In general, children who are still at home under the direct authority of their parents are to obey them (Ephesians 6:1-2; Colossians 3:20). But even those who have left their father and mother to establish a new family and authority structure are to honor their parents.