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information overload
Information Overload

In the information age we are drowning in tips and tricks as well as facts and figures. So why is it, with all the wisdom flying around today that our nations still fall into recession, relationships still break down irreparably and world resources are still so unfairly distributed that half the world is dying of starvation while the other half is dying of obesity? Krish Kandiah

wisdom matters
Wisdom Matters

“It is a book which seldom takes you to church. Like its own figure of wisdom, it calls to you across the street about some everyday matter, or points things out at home. Its function in Scripture is to put godliness into working clothes; to name business and society as spheres in which we are to acquit ourselves with credit to our Lord and in which we are to look for His training”. Derek Kidner

understanding interpretation
Understanding Interpretation

Like a gold ring in a pig’s snout is a beautiful woman who shows no discretion. 11:22

the purpose of proverbs 1 1 7
The Purpose of Proverbs 1:1-7

2 for attaining wisdom and discipline; for understanding words of insight;

3 for acquiring a disciplined and prudent life, doing what is right and just and fair;

4 for giving prudence to the simple, knowledge and discretion to the young—

5 let the wise listen and add to their learning, and let the discerning get guidance—

6 for understanding proverbs and parables, the sayings and riddles of the wise.


Verily God does not love any crafty boaster

A giver of water obtains satisfaction; a giver of food imperishable happiness.

Where there is covetousness there is death; Where there is forgiveness, there the Lord is.

A quarrelsome woman is like dripping water on a rainy day.

Never in this world is hate appeased by hatred; It is only appeased by love- this is an eternal law.

Without goodness a man cannot for long endure adversity, cannot for long enjoy prosperity.


Hindu Scriptures

Sikh Granth


Buddhist Scriptures

Analects of Confucius

the language of proverbs
The Language of Proverbs

Often expressed in couplet form: 5:1

My son ……pay attention to my wisdom,

….listen well to my words of insight,

Thoughts often repeated, reinforced for emphasis 26:3

A whip for the horse,

A halter for the donkey,

A rod for the backs of fools!


Language often in picture form26:1-10

Like snow in summer or rain in harvest, honour is not fitting for a fool.

Like a lame man's legs that hang limp is proverb in the mouth of a fool.

Like tying a stone in a sling is the giving of honour to a fool.


Book of trite sayings; pithy couplets; things to remember; wise proverbs.

A quarrelsome wife is like a constant dripping on a rainy day. 27:15

As a door turns on its hinges, so a sluggard turns on his bed. 26:14

· Appears to be unconnected; often no easily discernible thread



Not especially theological; whole chapters without reference to God Chapters 4, 7, 13, 26, 27.

· Full of wisdom, learning, understanding, discretion, discipline and guidance.

the genre of proverbs
The Genre of Proverbs

Is it law?

God’s Word so you must Obey it

Do not move an ancient boundary stone set up by your forefathers. 22:28

Eat honey, my son, for it is good; honey from the comb is sweet to your taste. 24:13

is it promise
Is it promise?

If you do this, then I will do this.

The wages of the righteous bring them life, but the income of the wicked brings them punishment. 10:16

A generous man will prosper; he who refreshes others will himself be refreshed. 11:25

how do we explain this
How do we explain this?

Do not answer a fool according to his folly, or you will be like him yourself. 26:4

Answer a fool according to his folly, or he will be wise in his own eyes. 26:5

it is experience
It is Experience

What to do when we meet this situation


The wisdom of the prudent is to give thought to their ways, but the folly of fools is deception. 14:8



The wise woman builds her house, but with her own hands the foolish one tears hers down. 14:1


He whose walk is upright fears the LORD, but he whose ways are devious despises him. 14:2


Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight. 3:5-6


Better a dry crust with peace and quiet than a house full of feasting, with strife.18:1


A fool's talk brings a rod to his back, but the lips of the wise protect them. 14:3

family life a wise son brings joy to his father but a foolish son grief to his mother 10 1
Family LifeA wise son brings joy to his father, but a foolish son grief to his mother. 10:1

Social life

Seldom set foot in your neighbour's house-too much of you, and he will hate you. 25:17

Working Life

Go to the ant, you sluggard; consider its ways and be wise! 6:6


Political life

Do not exalt yourself in the king's presence, and do not claim a place among great men; 25:6

Advice when we meet a new situation; some for now, some for later, some possibly never.

Good advice, Godly advice, wise advice and inspired!

the structure of proverbs
The Structure of Proverbs

1:1 - 9:18 Advice to the Young - Wisdom

10:1 - 24:34 Righteousness in a Wicked World - Righteousness

25:1 - 29:27 Getting on with Others - Attitudes

30:1 - 31:31 Balancing Life - Living

the conclusion of proverbs
The Conclusion of Proverbs

Fear the Lord

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline. 1:7

Listen to Wise People

Listen, my son, to your father's instruction and do not forsake your mother's teaching. They will be a garland to grace your head and a chain to adorn your neck.1:8-9