Summary: A look at Proverbs chapter 13.
Pearls From Proverbs – Chapter Thirteen
We will now look at Proverbs chapter thirteen:
Contrast the Upright and the Wicked
1 A wise son accepts his father’s discipline, But a scoffer does not listen to rebuke. Proverbs 13:1 (NASB)
Children of the same parents can have different temperaments. There is great hope of those that have a reverence for their parents, and are willing to be advised and admonished by them. “A wise son” hears his father’s instruction. But there is little hope of those that will not listen. How can those mend a fault when they will not be told of listen?
2 From the fruit of a man’s mouth he enjoys good, But the desire of the treacherous is violence. Proverbs 13:2 (NASB)
A good heart produces good fruit – just as a bad heart produces bad fruit. Jesus said:
"The good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth what is good; and the evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth what is evil; for his mouth speaks from that which fills his heart.” Luke 6:45 (NASB)
The question each of us should be asking is: “What is in my heart?”
3 The one who guards his mouth preserves his life; The one who opens wide his lips comes to ruin. Proverbs 13:3 (NASB)
You have not mastered self-control if you do not control what you say. Words can cut and destroy. James recognized this truth when he stated, "The tongue is a flame of fire. It is a whole world of wickedness" (James 3:6). If you want to be self-controlled, begin with your tongue. Stop and think before you speak. If you can control this small but powerful member, you can control the rest of your body.
4 The soul of the sluggard craves and gets nothing, But the soul of the diligent is made fat. Proverbs 13:4 (NASB)
We often hear many religious people expressing a desire to have more of a holy life – yet it never happens. Why is this? The reason is that their desire does not stir them to action. They are always learning the Bible but never putting it into practice. They become fat with the knowledge of the Word – but have not learned to apply it to their lives. [O Lord – how much have I done the same thing.]
5 A righteous man hates falsehood, But a wicked man acts disgustingly and shamefully. Proverbs 13:5 (NASB)
God hates sin and falsehood. When a righteous person puts on God’s character – they hate sin and falsehood too. A wicked person has no moral sense – therefore they act disgustingly and shamefully. Can we expect anything less?
6 Righteousness guards the one whose way is blameless, But wickedness subverts the sinner. Proverbs 13:6 (NASB)
We all have influence on others – either for good or for evil. Every choice for good sets into motion other opportunities for good. Evil choices follow the same pattern, but in the opposite direction. Each decision you make to obey God’s Word will bring a greater sense of order to your life, while each decision to disobey will bring confusion and destruction. The right choices you make reflect your integrity and character. Obedience brings the greatest safeguard and security. Would it not be a good thing to live a blameless life?
7 There is one who pretends to be rich, but has nothing; Another pretends to be poor, but has great wealth. Proverbs 13:7 (NASB)
Humility – even when one is wealthy – is a great virtue. Humility is not thinking less of yourself – but thinking of yourself – less. I can put on “heirs” yet have nothing. But to have something – and yet treat others with kindness and compassion – displays great wealth.
8 The ransom of a man’s life is his wealth, But the poor hears no rebuke. Proverbs 13:8 (NASB)
We are prone to judge of men’s “blessedness” – according to his world’s goods – but Solomon here shows what a gross mistake that is. Those that are rich – by some are respected for their riches – yet, by others they are envied and made a target. The rich man must lock his door at night for fear that robbers will enter. If he is kidnapped – he may be able to buy his way out – but who wants to live in fear of being kidnapped? The poor man does not have to worry about loosing his riches – for he has none. Wesley has said:
“Riches enable a man to redeem his life when it is in greatest danger, and poverty preserves a man from many injuries.”
9 The light of the righteous rejoices, But the lamp of the wicked goes out. Proverbs 13:9 (NASB)