Be careful who you are and who you hang out with! That just about sums up this wonderful Proverb! Chapter 26 tells us a lot about the fool, the sluggard, the gossip.
Did you recognize yourself anywhere? How about your friends? How about our elected officials? Hmmmmm.
Do you see a person wise in their own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for them.
Even the most brilliant person needs a healthy dose of humility. We all need to be wary and watchful and totally dependent upon God. It is also good to have a spiritual mentor to let us know when we think we are "wise in our own eyes".
Perhaps we need to climb down from a high horse!
Like one who grabs a stray dog by the ears is someone who rushes into a quarrel not their own.
- Proverbs 26:17
So many conflicts in churches (and workplaces and families) could be avoided if we all followed this Proverb! Remember to stay out of quarrels which do not concern you! If you don't, you might just end up being bitten!
20 Without wood a fire goes out; without a gossip a quarrel dies down. 21 As charcoal to embers and as wood to fire, so is a quarrelsome person for kindling strife. 22 The words of a gossip are like choice morsels; they go down to the inmost parts. - Proverbs 26:20-22
WOWEE! Does God know His people or WHAT? Again, these are words for any group that gathers! Church members in particular - BEWARE! These verses speak for themselves!
The following verses are great ones to discuss with teens. You have to be careful of the people you listen to. They may sound good - but what is in their hearts? Stars, celebrities, musicians, politicians, professors, even some people claiming to be spiritual leaders may sound and look good....but do they follow God?
23 Like a coating of silver dross on earthenware are fervent[a] lips with an evil heart. 24 Enemies disguise themselves with their lips, but in their hearts they harbor deceit. 25 Though their speech is charming, do not believe them, for seven abominations fill their hearts. 26 Their malice may be concealed by deception, but their wickedness will be exposed in the assembly. -- Proverbs 26: 23-26
I looked up "dross" in the dictionery and it is defined: " scum on molten metal" "refuse, rubbish" - WOW!
There are so many superficial, shallow people today. Our children (and we!) need to know how to detect the counterfeit.
How do we do this? By studying the TRUTH! Take a look at the Bible and discover the character of a good person.
Even better -- study JESUS -- He is the TRUTH -- Make sure you compare. No one is perfect -- but if a person consistently betrays the Word of God or the example of Christ, it is time to stear clear.
Proverbs 26 contains lots of warnings -- Let's listen and grow wise!