Father With A Bright Future

Bible Book: Proverbs  3 : 7-18
Subject: Father; Solomon; David

Proverbs 3:7-18 and Psalm 21:2-4

INTRODUCTION

Proverbs allows us to have God’s insight on how to live lives that will glorify God, how to build-up others, and how to be at peace with ourselves. WISDOM -heed its advice and you can avoid the regrettable pitfalls that can make life difficult. Listen to God’s wisdom; we will experience joy and laughter rather than feeling the scorn and despair that are so much a part of those who heed the spirit of this age.

These are not so much promises as guides to direct people in living productive lives. Proverbs is practical wisdom, showing us what we can do to get on in this puzzling world without loosing our way and ending in disaster.

Wisdom in Proverbs is not just a call to heed its advice, but “His” advice. Wisdom is personified; speaks of a person.

1 Corinthians 1:30, “But of Him you are in Christ Jesus, who became for us wisdom from God — and righteousness and sanctification and redemption”

When you are wise, you know how to handle and apply truth to specific situations in life.

Proverbs 9:10, “"The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.”

If wisdom has a beginning, then also progression; we can grow in wisdom.

Proverbs 19:20, “Listen to counsel and receive instruction,

that you may be wise in your latter days.”

We must be teachable and we can become mature.

James 1:5, “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him.”

As wisdom is acquired and applied in our lives, it allows us to grow into “Men of Integrity.”

O.S. Hawkins teaches:

Integrity is ROOTED in our PRIVATE LIFE
Integrity is REFLECTED in our PERSONAL LIFE
Integrity is REINFORCED in our PROFESSIONAL LIFE
Integrity is REVEALED in our PUBLIC LIFE

It stems from an inner power and not an outer promotion

Hey, Fathers, our children really need us to possess wisdom and be “Men (Fathers) of Integrity.”

4 THINGS BOYS LEARN FROM THEIR FATHERS:

How to deal with, look at, and think about women
Confidence
Strength, Sacrifice, and Service
What it means to be loved by the Heavenly Father

Learning the value of a man who reads his Bible daily, takes his family to church, and prays for and with his family.

Wisdom challenges and contributes:

I. WISDOM AND HEALTH. 7-8

“wise in your own eyes”

Genesis 3:6, “So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate.”

Contrast to wisdom

Genesis 2:16-17, “And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, "Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die."

Fear the Lord and turn away from evil. Wisdom promises spiritual and physical health. When one has a true reverence for God, then He will avoid being “wise in his own eyes” (i.e., feeling self-sufficient and proud in his wisdom) and will turn from sin.

The reward is therapeutic in nature. Wisdom brings “healing to your body” and “refreshment to your bones.” When we obey God, it saves us from the effects of certain lusts/sins and from divine judgment for disobedience (disease, anxiety, depression, anger, etc.)

ILLUSTRATION: Cain

Genesis 4:7, “If you do well, will you not be accepted? And if you do not do well, sin lies at the door. And its desire is for you, but you should rule over it."

God’s point was that Cain’s anger and spiritual disposition was directly related to his failure to do right. Wisdom truly is medicine for the soul and body.

If you want wisdom, you must listen to God attentively, obey Him humbly, ask Him sincerely, and seek Him diligently, the way a miner searches for silver and gold.

Obedience to the Lord can add years to your life and life to your years.

II. WISDOM AND HONOR. 9-10

Honor the Lord with your wealth. The challenge is to be a lavish giver; remember, the Lord challenges and He contributes. You cannot out-give the Lord. Your obedience brings God’s favor on your work.

In the Old Testament, Jews brought the Lord the firstlings of their flock and the firstfruits of their fields. This was their way of acknowledging His goodness and sovereignty.

If we don’t faithfully give to the Lord, do we really trust the Lord?

Proverbs 3:5

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart,

And lean not on your own understanding”

Our tithes and offerings aren’t “payments” for His blessings; rather, they’re evidence of our faith and obedience. Giving is heart-preparation for what God wants to say to us and do for us.

This passage underlines the importance of honoring God with our substance. Wisdom teaches a man to be a faithful steward in both finances and possessions. At the core of this principle is an “honoring” of the Lord, where God is recognized as the ultimate owner and giver of all that we possess. We have because He has entrusted to us. This principle of wisdom emphasizes the giving of our best in our offerings, as signified by the “first of all your produce.” The Lord helps us recognize our responsibility to give:

1. For the advancement of God’s work

2. As an act of worship

The Lord contributes (rewards) by promising that his barns will be filled with plenty and his vats overflowing. Rather than losing when one gives to God, one actually gains because it brings God’s blessings.

NOTE: Malachi 3:8-11

- Giving is required by God

- Giving is rewarded by God

Honoring God with our treasure does not guarantee that we you will never face testings and trials.

III. WISDOM AND HELP. 11-12

Discipline causes us to view adversity as purposeful and beneficial. Father/Son language is used to describe the relationship between God and His followers.

“Do not despise chastening” – reject or take lightly

“Nor detest His correction” – to be weary

Why not? Because it’s for your good and His glory.

Wisdom provides instructions, not only for times of prosperity, but also for times of adversity. No where does the Bible present the Christian journey as a life of uninterrupted blessing. Divine discipline must be expected and accepted as an unavoidable part of life.

The Lord often allows or causes affliction, suffering, or difficulty. Don’t despise or dread; instead, see them as privileges and benefits, because they prove our relationship with God as sons, and affirms His love for us. God corrects us because He deals with us paternally, like a Father who loves his son. Wisdom calls for submission in times of adversity – He wants to help us!

- Chastening Job 5:17 Eliphaz with Job

- Chastening Prov 3:11

- Chastening Hebrews 12:5-6

IV. WISDOM AND HAPPINESS. 13-18

There is blessedness in knowing the value of wisdom; it can become more valued over all else: silver, gold, jewels… 13-15

Wisdom assures one will be prosperous in life, know pleasantness, and peace.

Wisdom speaks of both its superiority and quality of life.

Happiness, Health, and Heaven are guaranteed to those who possess Wisdom. This is incomparable blessedness.

Happiness – the blessed man referred to in the Scriptures is a happiness that stems from being in a right relationship with God. There can be no happiness without holiness.

The true yield wisdom contributes when we accept her challenge is honor, riches, long life, peace, and salvation (tree of life).

Some people know the price of everything but the value of nothing; they make unwise choices and end up with shabby merchandise.

It is good to have the things money can buy, provided you don’t lose the things money can’t buy.

The true quality of life is only found when life is centered upon Godly wisdom.

All of these approaches are flawed if God and His Word are left out.

ILLUSTRATE: C.S. Lewis – Screwtape Letters

“We remember what Screwtape told Wormwood about pleasure. In Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis, Screwtape is a senior devil to whom Wormwood, a junior devil, reports. Wormwood’s assignment is to conduct a particular human being safely through the mazes of life down to Hell. Unfortunately for Wormwood, he fails. His client becomes a Christian. Screwtape writes Wormwood a series of letters not only to castigate and threaten him but also to instruct him in ways of preventing his client from becoming a mature Christian.

One letter deals with the question of pleasure. Screwtape acknowledges that pleasure is a useful tool for evil spirits to use in ensnaring human beings. But it is a problematic tool at best because pleasure is really God’s invention. ‘All we can do,’ Screwtape tells his understudy, ‘is distort pleasure.’ The formula of Hell, Screwtape says, is simple – offer an ever-increasing craving for an ever-decreasing pleasure. The supreme goal is to get a man’s soul-for nothing.”