Saturday, August 8, 2009

Proverbs 23: 26-35

26Give me your heart, my son,
And let your eyes delight in my ways.
27For a harlot is a deep pit
And an adulterous woman is a narrow well.
28Surely she lurks as a robber,
And increases the faithless among men.
29Who has woe? Who has sorrow?
Who has contentions? Who has complaining?
Who has wounds without cause?
Who has redness of eyes?
30Those who linger long over wine,
Those who go to taste mixed wine.
31Do not look on the wine when it is red,
When it sparkles in the cup,
When it goes down smoothly;
32At the last it bites like a serpent
And stings like a viper.
33Your eyes will see strange things
And your mind will utter perverse things.
34And you will be like one who lies down in the middle of the sea,
Or like one who lies down on the top of a mast.
35"They struck me, but I did not become ill;
They beat me, but I did not know it
When shall I awake?
I will seek another drink."

Today's Thought Question:
  1. What proverb in today's passage spoke to you and why?

What words today! Reading the depth and imagery in verses 29 to 35... Who can add to that?

My daughter is at a grade level eligible to hear talks from high schoolers about the dangers of under-age use of alcohol (cigarettes and drugs, too). Their words continue to resonate with my daughter, who has taken a pledge to not partake of any of these substances.

Although I applaud the effort--and am still pinching myself that this kind of talk has to happen at this tender age!--we, as parents, are struggling with my daughter's insistence that our social drinking is going to do us in. It is a challenge to explain that while not drinking is a very smart decision for her for now, drinking alcohol is not illegal nor immoral, per the Bible. But, the decision to drink comes with a great deal of responsibility. And therein lies the rub!

"Who that has common sense would contract a habit, or sell himself to a sin, which tends to such guilt and misery, and exposes a man every day to the danger of dying insensible, and awaking in hell? Wisdom seems in these chapters to take up the discourse as at the beginning of the book."
--Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Bible

What if they put the words of Proverbs on cocktail napkins for those college students making their first bar runs? I naive am I? The teens teaching my daughter, the pre-prom smashed cars set up on high school lawns, the existence of the longtime D.A.R.E. program (Drug Abuse Resistance Education)--all speak loudly that the beginning of wisdom in this area is part of the "training up" of our children...fairly little children, still!

"When shall I awake? I will seek another drink."

"So let's sink another drink
'Cause it'll give me time to think
If I had the chance
I'd ask the world to dance
And I'll be dancing with myself"

--"Dancing With Myself," Billy Idol & Tony James


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Tomorrow's Scripture Focus and Thought Question:

Proverbs 24: 1-12 (of the Solomon-compiled proverbs)
  1. What proverb in today's passage spoke to you and why?

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Note: I read from the New American Standard Bible translation, specifically, The MacArthur Study Bible (NASB). I will quote other sources if used in a post.
I also use Strong's Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible (with notes from the King James Version).