Summary: Like guardrails on the highway, God’s wisdom gives us guidance on how our desire for intimacy can be channeled in an appropriate direction, without bringing harm to us or others.

Who's Shaping You?

Prov. chapter 5: 1-23

Prov. 6:20-35

In our study of the Book of Proverbs we find that the promise of success for the righteous and destruction for the wicked need to read as general principles that are usually—but not always—fulfilled on this side of glory . Ultimately, those proverbs that promise rewards for the righteous and punishment for the wicked are fulfilled. For in the new heaven and earth, all of those who have been declared righteous in Christ will enjoy eternal life in the renewed creation while the wicked will suffer eternal death in the lake of fire (Rev. 20:11–21:27).

To the extent that the book of Proverbs points to the fulfillment of its sayings in the afterlife, it does so somewhat indirectly, for it does not explicitly reveal the nature of heaven and hell. Instead, Proverbs bears more of an implicit witness to the life that is to come and the final realization of God’s blessing in the new creation through an emphasis on God’s attributes of omniscience and omnipresence. For example, Proverbs 15:3 tells us that the eyes of the Lord are everywhere in order to watch over those who do evil and those who do good. This indicates that even when no one else sees our actions, God remains fully aware of our every step and keeps a record.

In this study we find Solomon devotes an entire chapter to a “man to man” talk with his son about sexual immorality.

Proverbs 5 presents in three sections a father’s call for his son to avoid immorality

The structure is

(1) a warning (5:1-6),

(2) a laying out of consequences for disobedience (5:7-14),

(3) It then concludes in verses 15-23 with the godly means of satisfying sexual desire.

Like guardrails on the highway, God’s wisdom gives us guidance on how our desire for intimacy can be channeled in an appropriate direction, without bringing harm to us or others. This lecture begins with the familiar words, “My son.”

5:1 My son, pay attention to my wisdom,

turn your ear to my words of insight,

2 that you may maintain discretion

and your lips may preserve knowledge.

3 For the lips of the adulterous woman drip honey,

and her speech is smoother than oil;

4 but in the end she is bitter as gall,

sharp as a double-edged sword.

5 Her feet go down to death;

her steps lead straight to the grave.

6 She gives no thought to the way of life;

her paths wander aimlessly, but she does not know it.

Notice the strong call here for the son to diligently walk in wisdom and be on guard for the dangers he will face. This is a general call applicable to sons and daughters, but the particular warnings to watch over his heart (4: 23) and keep his eyes focused on the goal (4: 25) are especially relevant to the issues of walking in sexual purity The temptation to sexual sin comes through the eyes and the heart . It is crucial that a man learn to protect himself from such enticements by keeping his eyes focused where they are supposed to be and to guard his mind and emotions lest his will be lead astray into unrighteousness. Though women may not be sexually aroused as men are by what they see, their eyes can lead them astray in many other areas, and guarding the heart is essential.

The contrast between reality and what the immoral woman appears to be is great. Her lips drip with honey which is sweet, but in the end she is bitter(5: 3) Her speech is as smooth as oil, but in the end she is sharp(5: 4) . The warnings are just as great. The fun and excitement she may appear to give to life will end in death(5:5) She is also ignorant of her true condition and where she is actually heading(5:6)

In verse 7 that the father’s warning expands from a son to sons, plural. There is a larger group being called to pay attention to the warning and the solution that will follow. The advice is short and to the point in verse 8. Stay far away from her in your travels and do not go near where she lives. In other words, if you avoid her totally, you can avoid the sin that will occur with her. A simple solution, but one tragically ignored for men and women often put themselves in danger of temptation by where they choose to go and with whom they choose to spend their time. I will add this also includes what they choose for entertainment.

Verses 9-10 give multiple reasons for this advice which can be reduced to the idea that it will ruin your life. The idea of giving your years to the cruel one as well as strangers getting your strength and a stranger getting your wealth are the various costs and penalties that come as a consequence to having a relationship with a wayward woman. These are the direct costs of being involved with a wayward woman , but you also subject yourself to blackmail by her or anyone else that finds out.

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