PROVERB PRACTICALS   life consists of choices, proverbs 11-22, audio

 

Proverbs 11:22,   As a jewel of gold in a swineís snout, so is a fair woman which is without discretion.

Again we are given a proverb which moves us to paint a mind picture that we can compare to a truth that God wishes us to know that we may live a successful and fruitful life.

Knowing Godís Proverbs should increase your love for Him for in them He has given us instruction that will keep us from falling, that will help us to walk on the narrow path, and that show his care for us.

God loves His children so he provides wise sayings so as to equip his children for life in this world.

These wise sayings are especially appropriate for young people who have lived short lives and are in periods of life where many decisions must be made.

Decision making, like the making of anything, cannot be done by one who is not trained to make decisions.

Are you training your children to make decisions or do you make most of your childrenís decisions?

Do you let your children make decisions and let them see where those decisions lead?

Now of course you have to be wise choosing in what areas to let your children make decisions.

But the proverbs are like a handy manís tools that he uses to make things.

He learns how to use tools in order to fix things right and decision making also requires the right tools in order to arrive at the right decision.

Will your children be ready for the decisions they must make when they leave your supervision?

Normally God gives 18 years to prepare them for decision making.

Are you on track? Have your children learned the first step in decision making, that of deciding to obey your word?

Without this step it is very hard if not impossible to train them up in the way they should go and that includes making the right decisions.

So God in our proverb for today, as part of the decision making curriculum, directs your children to the barnyard.

God seems to love the barnyard for there are many lessons there that apply to life.

God uses animals to teach us doesnít He?

We have been told in the Proverbs to go to the tiny ant and learn her ways.

God speaks of the oxen, the sheep, the goats, the eagle, the serpent, the locusts, the spider, the lion, the greyhound, the roe, the horse, the dog, the bear and the ravens.

And here in our proverb God directs us to the pig sty.

What? you say, can we learn in the pig sty?

Well, if you are discerning and you keep your eyes and ears open you can learn something from everything, including the pigsty.

Didnít God take the prodigal son to the pigsty where he learned that what he had left at home was of so much greater value than that of filling his belly with the husks that swine did eat?

Didnít his view of the pigsty open his eyes to his fatherís love.

Didnít the pigsty bring him to repentance and an understanding that he had sinned against heaven and his father?

Now when a son or daughter refuses wisdom God may bring him to the school of the pigsty.

It is a hard and harsh school with a most strenuous curriculum and a very stern principal.

But God would rather you learn from wisdom and not have to get into the pigsty.

So we are given to picture the swine and where they live.

Now see yourself visiting the farm with the intent of learning from the swine.

It is not hard to find the sty, just follow your nose.

Do so, and soon you come to a place that pigs have made comfortable for themselves, a place that suits them for it is a muddy place, a wet place, a dirty place, an odiferous place.

But the pigs love it for they are pigs doing what comes naturally for a pig.

The word wallow comes to mind when you think of what pigs do in the sty.

Wallow means to roll oneís body on the earth in mire.

It means to love filth and to surround yourself with filth.

Pigs love to wallow.

So God says: I want you to look over the sty fence and see the pigs.

Just wallowing pigs covered with mire, rolling in filth, but wait, God points to a swine over in the corner; take a look over there he says!

So you look and are amazed for there is a swine that has a jewel of gold in his snout!

What is that valuable nugget doing there?

That is crazy for that kind of thing just doesnít belong.

This is outrageous for why would a pig have a jewel in his snout as he rolls in the mire and filth of the pigsty?

Now God has given us to see this picture because it teaches us that certain things are never meant to go together but when they are put together the sight draws ridicule and laughter.

A pig is a pig and is always expected to look and act a certain way, but if you place a jewel in a swineís nose to try to enhance the pig and to make it look like something other than a pig you will draw laugher and disdain.

A pig and a jewel of gold do not go together.

That is what this lesson focuses on, those things that do not go together.

The English language is filled with word couplets that do not go together and we call them an oxymoron.

How can there be such a thing as a jumbo shrimp?

What about a brief speech, or fresh dried fruit.

Does the word grand and children really go together? Can children ever be grand?

What about new used cars, or real phony.

Can a person say, Thank God Iím an atheist?

How can you act naturally. If you act is that natural?

Unsalted saltines, deliberate mistake, military intelligence, 99% pure, honest politician, authentic counterfeit, or is there really such a thing as a civil servant?

God has made things to go together with other things.

He has made them male and female, not to join up as male and male, or female and female.

The majestic lion roars, the canary warbles with flute type notes and bubbling water sounds.

The canary does not protest with demands that he has the right to roar but accepts the fact that what comes out of his mouth goes with his tiny size.

A canary is not packaged for a roar nor could he handle the results of a roar.

Nor could a lion send from his mouth flute type notes and bubbling water sounds for the lion is king of the jungle and God has given him tools to exercise his kingship.

So there are things that are made to go together.

A pig is not made to go together with jewels.

Nor is a fair woman made to be without discretion.

A fair woman is given beauty of face and beauty of soul should be the natural twin to a fair countenance.

Discretion means a separating of what is correct and proper from what is not.

The beauty of a fair woman without discretion is soon lost because her poor character will override any appearance that she may exhibit.

Now the Hebrew word that is translated discretion literally means taste.

This or that person has good taste!

With regard to foods God has given you the ability to taste.

The mouth is equipped to discern what comes into it.

What comes into it goes through an screening process whereby it is judged to be sweet, salty, tart, or bitter and from that judgment a decision is made to accept the food for further processing.

Taste is the gateway to the stomach.

Taste tells the mouth to allow the food entrance or not.

Some foods are accepted and some foods are rejected.

So discretion is knowing what is acceptable and what is to be rejected.

Discretion is decision making.

With regard to the fair woman it is an ability to decide what is fitting, harmonious, beautiful, comely, polite, tactful, right or wrong.

Some Sunday mornings my wife may ask me if this jacket or that jacket goes with this dress or if this piece of jewelry fits her outfit in a way that is comely.

She desires to get my opinion on what is fitting, harmonious, and beautiful.

She is concerned about things like that for she is a Christian woman who desires to present herself in a modest godly manner which does not major on the outward but majors on the inward of a meek and quiet spirit.

But she also remembers that appearance is important for a good appearance can be a gift to others.

Do your eyes like to look all day at the unkempt or careless?

Do we enjoy going to the landfill to look upon the waste of men or would we rather see a beautiful sunset?

My eyes are rewarded by a beautiful sunset where not only the sun is in play but the clouds enter in and provide a backdrop for the multitude of colors to show themselves.

If you love the brethren donít give them a landfill to look at but try to be pleasing in your appearance.

Remember it is others that see you and not yourself.

You may look in the mirror one time but others have to see you often.

Godís works fit together in all ways and all of his creation show His discretion.

All things that he creates fit together.

I have never looked upon Godís creation where colors didnít go together.

So a fair woman, a woman who has been given the gift of outward beauty has an obligation to honor her beauty by knowing how to decide on the side of right and proper things.

She should work at being able to judge critically of what is correct and proper and to organize her life so that her beauty is enhanced by her discretion for one goes with the other.

The gold ring in the pigís snout is the subject of ridicule so the fair woman whose behavior does not match her beauty is also the subject of ridicule.

Instead of retaining honor as we discussed in verse 16 she only brings upon herself disgrace.

In the matter of discretion of dress some of the jewelry that is worn today is laughable as ears are tugged by the weight of excessively long dangling earrings.

There seems to be a contest as to how long these things can get!

It is not pleasant to see how some women and men puncture their ears and their nose and their tongue, and their cheek and I will halt there because there seems to be no limit to what else can be punctured.

It is so amusing seeing the combinations of dress that is popular today.

The fashion gurus speak and everyone jumps to put on silly things.

Extremely fashionable high heels on feet whose legs are clothed with denim jeans.

Beautiful blouses and excessive jewelry in combination with Leviís.

Men wearing sports coats with sloppy tee shirts or suit coats with sloppy pants and shoes.

Men with several days of unshaved stubble, who, poor things, come across as hobos in need of a handout.

I have seen the homeless beggars look better than some men who drive BMWís.

But beards, like anything need to be cared for.

If you are going to have a beard take care of it.

Let all things be done decently and in order, even a beard!

Today there is little classification as to what is proper and right but it ought not to be so in the Body of Christ.

A man named Robert Leighton, Archbishop of the Church of Scotland in the 1600ís wrote this about appearance and dress.

Lightness and fantastic garb in apparel is the very bush (a branch of a tree fixed or hung out as a sign) or sign hanging out, that a vain mind lodges within. The soul fallen from God has lost its true worth and beauty; and therefore it basely descends to these mean (common) things, to serve and dress the body, and take share with it of its unworthy borrowed ornaments, while it hath lost and forgotten God, and seeks not after him, knows not that he alone is the beauty and ornament of the soul, and his Spirit, and the grace of it, his rich attire.

For the Christian, dress is not to be given preeminence.

Dress and appearance is part of discretion but only part.

What is proper behavior for Godís children?

What is being discreet, what is wise conduct, what is propriety, self control, prudence, and discrimination?

This culture does not know nor does it desire that you know!

But Godís children have been given His word that we may be discriminating, discerning people, people of discretion for discretion shall preserve thee, Godís word tells us.

Godís people are to be cautious in judgment.

We are to judge critically of what is correct and proper.

We are to separate mentally, to differentiate, to discriminate and to distinguish.

If we do this it will make for right choices.

It will make you steer the boat of life away from the rocks for it will guide you along the narrow way of safety.

Discretion will slow you down in order for understanding to be engaged.

Discretion provides clear knowledge of the result of choices.

Where will this choice or that choice lead?

Discretion is that which God desires to go with his children.

Discretion is fitting clothing for the child of God and God does not leave us naked for He provides His word that we may be a people who are prepared to make right decisions.

 

 

Proverbs 11:22,  As a jewel of gold in a swineís snout, so is a fair woman which is without discretion.

Some things never go together and if someone tries to put certain things together the site draws ridicule and laughter.

A pig is a pig and is always expected to look and act a certain way, but if you place a jewel in a swineís nose to try to enhance the pig and to make it look like something other than a pig you will draw laugher and disdain.

A pig and a jewel of gold do not go together.

A fair woman is given beauty of face and beauty of soul should be the natural twin to a fair countenance.

Discretion means a separating of what is correct and proper from what is not.

Discretion is prudence. Discretion is character. Discretion is separation.

It is that discernment which enables a person to judge critically and cautiously what is correct and proper.

The beauty of a fair woman without discretion is soon lost because her poor character will override any appearance that she may display.

Character lasts longer than beauty.