Read: Proverbs 19
Reading through this chapter is like visiting a gallery of fools. Step right up! In the showcase you’ll see “a false witness,” “a foolish son,” “an idle person,” “a man of great wrath,” “the sluggard,” “the violent,” and “a worthless witness.” Hanging about each fool’s neck is a placard summarizing his fate, and, you guessed it, the ending isn’t happy. Don’t speed through this exhibit. Take your time and look closely. Reader beware: don’t be like these people!
Most of these sayings are warning you about vice. However, scattered throughout this chapter are sayings about people who have shown integrity, good sense, generosity, instruction, faithfulness, and the fear of the Lord. Compare their fates with the bad guys. Which future do you want?
Also pay attention to God’s posture towards the poor and needy in verses 1, 4, 7, 17, and 22. The poor are often abandoned and abused by the world, but they are not overlooked by God. In fact, God stands in solidarity with the righteous poor and exalts them above the gallery of fools.
What member of this cast of fools serves as your greatest warning? What must you learn to avoid their fate?