Summary: This is two devotional meditations on Proverbs 2:19-22 & 3:1-4. God's love is True & truthful. False love exists. We have to be careful who & what we fall in love with-because whatever we love sets our direction.
19 of all those who go to her none return, nor do they attain paths of life 20 so you go in the way of goodness, and keep the to it 21 for the right (straight, righteous) shall dwell (abide/remain) in the land & the mature (complete, whole) shall remain (be left) in it 22 but the wicked will be cut off from the land, and the deceitful will be torn away from it.
Be Careful Who You Love (what you’ll miss if you love the wrong one)
Being in love is a kind of intoxication-but one that can last a lifetime (though there are, I think, very few who experience a lifetime of being in love). CS Lewis said “falling in love is something that happens to you, being in love is something you do”. This is one of those rare quotes I would partially disagree with Lewis. I believe falling in love and being in love are both a matter of choice, something we do, and that we must choose well. Solomon warned his son that Lady Wisdom would keep him from the love of a woman who would draw him away from the good and blessings and fruitfulness God designed for him. The image is clear, fall in love with Wisdom-pursue her-and false loves will simply not be enticing to you. A person in love is simply not bothered by the attraction to alternative allurements (research suggests that those in committed relationship actually look away more quickly from more attractive members of the opposite sex https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S002210310800142X). God designed the husband-wife relationship to teach us about, and draw us to, Himself, and for fruitfulness. Those who pursue love with the wrong person will experience the opposite.
Jesus said “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.” (Matthew 7:14) There are paths, once we start down them, it’s really difficult to change direction. As Yoda warned “once the path to the dark side you start, forever will it dominate your destiny”, (or something like that). No one can influence our choices of path as greatly as our beloved. The one God would have you hook up with for life must be one who is on the straight and narrow and will motivate you to stay on that path. On the right path are “life” and “goodness”. For this reason Paul exhorted “do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers”. The bull you yoke yourself to better be headed in the right direction on the right path, otherwise you will lose multiple opportunities for life and goodness-fruitfulness.
The Fruit (Land)
Wisdom blesses the land, and those who live in it. Adam and Eve were sent out of the Garden. The people of Israel were exiled from the Promised Land. The Land of Israel represented the place where the people were blessed with life and fruitfulness-the place they would raise their children and grandchildren, the place where the fruit of the land would provide sustenance and pleasure. In the New Testament, any place is good for the LORD to give His Spirit-and along with Himself He gives love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faith, gentleness, and self-control (a sound mind) (Galatians 5). He also gives family as the safe haven for children to grow into maturity and wisdom and strength. Those who fall in love with Wisdom will not be attracted to those who would lead them away from such abundance (We’ll discuss more of the implications of what it means to “fall in love with” Wisdom in the next chapter).
Prayer for Today
Fix our eyes on You, so that we are not distracted by lesser “loves”.
Let us follow Jesus, the Author and Perfecter of our faith, with resolution and consistency.
Honestly, we’re so in love with You that we can’t imagine ever sacrificing that love to pursue someone who doesn’t love you. Yet, we’re frail, and sometimes easily deceived.
Keep our eyes open to Truth-keep our hearts soft and open to Your good guidance. Keep us from everyone and everything that would keep us from producing abundant fruit in Your Kingdom.
Build Your character in our hearts.
Bring us to love that draws us only to You.
In the name of Your blessed, glorious and beloved Son, Jesus
1. My son, don’t forget my law, but let my commands guard your heart. 2. For they will add long days to you, and years of life and peace.
3.Do not leave behind love (hesed-mercy) and truth (amen-You thought it meant “so be it” or something like that. It’s the common word for Truth. When Jesus said “truly, truly I say to you” He said “amen, amen, I say to you”) tie them around your neck-write them in the notebook of your heart. 4. And find favour and good understanding in God’s view (eyes) and people’s.