Proverbs 27: Bible Study Guide.

20-BSG-27J: QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS.

SEEING WHAT’S THERE.

[1] What is the main content of this chapter? The duties governing behavior, 27:1–27.

  • Beware of four obvious sins (1–4).
  • Cultivate friendships (5–10).
  • Follow your parent’s advice (11–22).
  • Be very diligent in protecting your income and resources (23–27).

[2] What does the chapter say about God? God wants us to fully depend on Him. We should speak of the morrow as those who are submitted to the will of God. We must use the present time with diligence and wisdom and presume not upon tomorrow.

CAPTURE THE ESSENCE.

[3] Of what should you not boast? (27:1) Tomorrow. We must beware of overconfidence about tomorrow: It is uncertain! Only God knows what the future holds.

[4] Instead of boasting about tomorrow, what should we do? We need to learn the importance of a life of faith and dependence on God. Man was never designed to be independent. We must learn to cultivate a spirit of holy resignation to the Divine will; a spirit of cautious moderation as to the things of this present life; and cultivating a spirit of humility.

[5] Why is it better to let someone else praise you? (27:2) “If you deserve praise, someone else will notice and will praise you. But if you brag about yourself, you are acting in pride and will probably turn others off. Besides, the praise of others carries more weight, for they are generally more objective about your accomplishments and character qualities.” (NIV Quest Study Bible)

[6] What is better than the kisses of an enemy? (27: 5-6) Open rebuke; the wounds of a friend.

[7] How can we trust wounds from a friend? (27:6) Wounds from a friend are rebukes or criticism intended to correct us “Like an earring of gold and an ornament of fine gold is a wise rebuker to an obedient ear.” (Proverbs 25:12, NKJV). Even though they might be painful, they are of more benefit than the flattery or insincerity of an enemy.

[8] How can we know who our friends are? (17:17). “A genuine friend loves us through the best and worst of times. In fact, a friend’s true colors are often revealed when we go through unusually difficult or painful circumstances….  True friends sometimes wound us. They’re willing to tell us the hard truth, even when it hurts. We can trust their honest feedback, but an enemy only multiplies kisses (27:6). Beware of someone who does not have the courage to confront you when you need it.” (NIV Quest Study Bible)

[9] Who should you not forsake? (27:10) Your own friend or your father’s friend.

[10] In what ways do people sharpen each other? (27:17) “People sharpen each other through exchanging information, discussing issues and critiquing each other’s ideas. Different people can bring different perspectives and strengths to a discussion. Like a knife blade rubbed on steel, this process in a friendship may sometimes cause the sparks to fly! Yet the result is good. A true friend sharpens and inspires his or her friend.” (NIV Quest Study Bible)

[11] What is never satisfied? (27:20) Hell and Destruction. “The more a man has, the more he wants. With selfishness the ruling passion of the unregenerate man, there is no limit to the ambitions that he may form and no limit to the destruction and death that he may bring upon others in the process (see Prov. 30:15, 16; Eccl. 1:8; cf. 1 John 2:15, 16).” (The Seventh-Day Adventist Bible Commentary, 3:1041)

[12] What should you be diligent to know? (27:23) Know the state of your flocks; Attend to your herds

[13] What is not forever? (27:24) Riches; also, remember that a crown does not endure to all generations.

20-BSG-27Y: EVENING DEVOTION.

A Night Though corresponding with the today’s Bible Reading Plan: Proverbs 27/ Theme: Boasting/ 20-BSG-27Y, (Proverbs 27:1)/ Hymn: “I need Thee every hour, Most gracious Lord” [Author: Annie S. Hawks (1872)]/

THOU SHALL NOT BOAST/ Key Text: “Do not boast of [yourself and] tomorrow, for you know not what a day may bring forth.” (Proverbs 27:1, AMP)

EXPLORATION: Boasting is condemned in the Scriptures (read Pr. 27:1; Ps 10:2-6; 12:3-4; 52:1; 94:4; Hab. 1:10-11; Rom. 1:29-30; 2Tim. 3:1-2; 1 John 2:16)

REFLECTION: What is boasting? Boasting is excessively proud and self-satisfied talk about one’s achievements, possessions, or abilities. Boasting is sin, and this chapter start by addressing the issue of boasting—we must beware of overconfidence about tomorrow for it is uncertain!

How should we plan for the future? “First, this proverb does not condemn planning and preparing for the future. It is not wrong to draft an agenda or live by a schedule. A modern proverb wisely states that those who fail to plan, plan to fail. Even ants are commended in Proverbs for storing up food in preparation for winter (Prov. 6:6–8; 30:25).

Second, this proverb condemns presuming upon the future. It is a sin to take tomorrow for granted and to act as if we have the power to control the days and events of our lives. We do not have that ability. Only God can direct the future. His plans, not ours, will ultimately prevail (Prov. 16:9; 19:21; Jer. 10:23). Jesus taught that we should live one day at a time and focus on God’s grace and guidance for that day (Mt. 6:33–34). We must beware of being like the rich fool of whom Jesus spoke. He made all his plans for the future and was certain that they would come to pass. He failed to trust God throughout life and to remember that death could prevent him from completing his agenda (Luk. 12:16–21).” [Leadership Ministries Worldwide, Proverbs, The Preacher’s Outline & Sermon Bible, (Chattanooga, TN: Leadership Ministries Worldwide, 2012), 404].

DEVOTIONAL IMPLICATION: When making our plans, we must trust God and plead “Thy Will Be Done!” We must submit ourselves to God and entrust all our plans and cares to Him. The scriptures says: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.” (Proverbs 3:5–6, NKJV)

A portion of scripture (James 4:15) by the Apostle James (see below) includes three essential facts of life that make for good planning: 1. God is in control—“If it is the Lord’s will” (4:15); 2. Life is a daily gift—“we will live” (4:15); 3. All our going and doing must be carried out with the first two points in mind. Therefore Beloved, when planning our future plans, projects, careers, etc., let us submit to God and wholly depend on Him for He both knows and holds the future. “For I know the thoughts and plans that I have for you, says the Lord, thoughts and plans for welfare and peace and not for evil, to give you hope in your final outcome.” (Jeremiah 29:11, AMP)

Have A Good Night: “Yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that.” As it is, you boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil.” (James 4:14–16, ESV)