We begin reading through the Proverbs in today’s Bible reading*. Most of the Proverbs were written by Solomon, the wisest man who ever lived. God gave us the book of Proverbs, not to make us smarter, but to give us wisdom. Wisdom is applied knowledge. Knowledge by itself has limited value. (1 Corinthians 8:1b) But wisdom gives life.
[Proverbs are] for learning wisdom and discipline; for understanding insightful sayings; for receiving prudent instruction in righteousness, justice, and integrity; for teaching shrewdness to the inexperienced, knowledge and discretion to a young man— let a wise person listen and increase learning, and let a discerning person obtain guidance— for understanding a proverb or a parable, the words of the wise, and their riddles. The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and discipline.
Proverbs 1:1–7 (CSB)
James 1:5 tells us, “Now if any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God—who gives to all generously and ungrudgingly—and it will be given to him.” (CSB)
God offers His people wisdom — as much as they want and need — if we will only ask, seek for it and value it highly by living according to it.
When reading Proverbs, remember that they were never intended as take-it-to-the-bank promises, but rather as tried-and-true principles for gaining wisdom. Keeping this in mind will prevent you from falling for the snake oil of the Prosperity Gospel peddlers and the false doctrine of transactional religion where God is obligated to do something in exchange for you doing something.
With our Chronological reading plan, we’ll speed through the thirty-one chapters of Book of Proverbs over the course of two and a half weeks (with some other readings interspersed). At some times in my spiritual walk, I have found it helpful to read through the “Proverb of the Day” each month through the year, with each day’s Proverb corresponding with the day of the month. For example, on the fifteenth of the month, you read Proverbs 15. Just remember, if you take this approach of reading Proverbs, remember to not read that day’s Proverb as a horoscope.
* Chapters covered in today’s reading: