Proverbs 23:19-28

Today’s devotion is going to be focused on verse 19-28, about the author’s advice to his son. Living in an Asian household, one of the most common things to say to your children is “I’ve eaten more salt than all the amount of rice you’ve eaten.” Yes, that is true. Here we see the author giving advice to his son (or even children) like typical Asian parents.

The author starts off from verse 19-21 by telling his son to stay away from drunkards or gluttons. That is the wise thing to do, as the author tells him in verse 19. The reason is because they will “come to poverty, and slumber will clothe them with rags.” It is implied that by doing so, the son will be influenced in a bad manner by these group of unwise folks.

Verse 22-25 becomes the more interesting part. Maybe it is something some parents might quote it for their children. Here we see the commands for the son to “Listen to your father who gave you life, and do not despise your mother when she is old.” By doing so, one will acquire truth, wisdom, instruction and understanding (verse 23). By doing so, this results in the parent’s rejoicing and gladness (verse 25). The reason for the parent’s rejoicing is because the father gave him life (verse 22) and the mother was the one who bore him (verse 25). It is normal for every parent to rejoice and be glad when their children grow in maturity. In honouring our parents, we acquire wisdom.

Lastly in verse 26-28, the author writes in a very “deep” level, where he calls the son to give his heart to the father, which is the deepest core of the child’s inner life. He calls the son to observe his ways (verse 26), which assumes the father himself also embody the virtues which he calls his son to follow. Otherwise, the father would be a hypocrite. Here, the author reminds his son of the importance of distance himself from prostitutes, because it will ruin his life (verse 27, 28). The whole book of Proverbs has a lot to say about prostitutes, and it is emphasized here again by the author to remind us the importance of distancing ourselves from prostitution. Of course, don’t deceive yourself by thinking the author is only speaking about prostitution. By implication, he is speaking about sexual immorality.

So here we have a few questions for all of us to ponder upon.

  1. How often do we exercise the wisdom of staying away from drunkards or gluttons (or even any unwise people)? These people could potentially influence our lives in a negative manner.
  2. How many of us here have stopped listening to advice given by our parents (or those above us)? Yes, they might have a different mindset. However, we must be reminded that one of the ways we acquire wisdom is through honouring our parents (or even those above us!).
  3. Are there areas of your life where you need to embody certain virtues that you constantly remind your children to live up to? If there are, ask God to give you the grace and strength to live up to it, because we will never be able to live up to that on our own.
  4. Are there areas where you can guide your children in the way which the author does, by offering godly advice and wisdom upon them? If there are, ask God for wisdom to guide your children.
    This passage has helped us see the importance of children obeying and honouring their parents. It is also a reminder for adults as well. I highly encourage you to speak to your children today about this devotion. If you can, hear what they have to say about the areas where you can improve as their parent in Christ. Of course, also help them see how they can improve as children in Christ.

And for the children who are reading this with their parents, remember the importance of honouring your parents. There might be disagreements, but you would benefit a lot by obeying and honouring your parents (of course, this assumes the parent’s decisions are reasonable). You would gain much wisdom in the long run of life.

Hon Sir Neng

xxx

箴言书23:19-28

今天的灵修将集中在19-28节。这是关于提交人对儿子的建议。生活在亚洲家庭中,对孩子说的最常见的事情之一是“我吃的盐比你吃的米还要多” 是的,那是真的。这里我们看见作者就如一位平凡的亚洲式的管教。

作者从19-21节开始,告诉儿子要远离醉汉和馋嘴。就在第19节,作者说到那是明智的。那是因为”好酒贪食的,必致贫穷。好睡觉的,必穿破烂衣服”这是在暗示着暗示这样做将使这些不明智的人对儿子产生不良影响。

22-25节成为更有趣的部分。也许有些父母可能会为孩子引用它。这里我们看到对儿子的命令“你要听从生你的父亲。你母亲老了,也不可藐视她“这样,人们将获得真理,智慧,指导和理解 (23节) 。这样,可以使父母感到欣喜(25节)。父母之所以高兴,是因为父亲给了他生命,也因为儿子是母亲生的。每个父母在孩子长大后都会感到高兴和高兴是正常的。 在尊重父母的过程中,我们获得了智慧。

最后在第26-28节中,作者写得很“深” 感情。他叫儿子将自己的心交给父亲,这是孩子内心深处的最深处。他打电话给儿子观察他的行径(26节)。这也说到父亲本人也体现了他叫儿子遵循的美德。否则,父亲将是个伪君子。作者在这里提醒儿子,远离妓女很重要,因为这会毁了他的生活( 27和28节)。整本箴言书中有很多关于妓女的话,作者在这里再次强调要提醒我们远离妓女的重要性。当然,不要以为作者只是在谈论卖淫而欺骗自己。言外之意,他也在谈论性不道德行为。

因此,在这里我们有几个问题需要我们大家思考:

  1. 我们多久行使一次远离酒鬼或嘴的智慧?这些人可能以负面的方式影响我们的生活。
  2. 我们中有多少人已经停止听父母的建议了(或者上司)?是的,他们可能有不同的心态。但是,必须提醒我们,获得智慧的方法之一是通过孝敬父母(或者上司)。
  3. 您的生活中是否有某些地方需要体现某些美德,这些美德你也不断提醒您的孩子们实现自己的生活?如果有的话,请上帝赐给你恩典和力量来实现它,因为我们将永远无法独自实现它。
  4. 您是否有需要如作者指孩子的引神忠告和智慧们的方式?如果有的话,向上帝求智慧,以引导孩子。

这段经文帮助我们看到了孩子服从和尊重父母的重要性。这也提醒成年人。我强烈建议您今天就这个灵修与孩子们讨论。如果可以,请听听他们对您作为基督里的父母可以改善的方面的评价。当然,也可以帮助他们孩子了解如何在基督里成长。

对于与父母一起阅读本文的孩子,请记住尊重父母的重要性。可能会有分歧,但是服从和尊重父母会使您受益匪浅(假设父母的决定是合理的)。从长远来看,您将获得很多智慧。

韩思能 上

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