PROVERB PRACTICALS  

 

Proverbs 22:1,  A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches, and loving favor rather than silver and gold.

In recent days I have been reading from the book of I Chronicles which can sometimes be very tedious because of the multitude lists of names.

I have taken it as a challenge to try to pronounce all the names but fail many times because most are unfamiliar, perhaps appearing in the Bible in only that place.

But every so often a familiar name appears which seems to be one of the rewards given for taking the time to read this book.

Going though these lists is like mining for gold and finding a well sought out nugget which is recognizable.

It is interesting to see that some of these names have survived to be used in our day but most have fallen by the wayside and are no longer used.

Adam and Seth have survived, but who calls their son Ham?

We still use Dan, and Joseph and Benjamin but where are the Issacharís and Zebulonís?

But God has placed these lists in the Word of God for a reason.

There are names there of people who lived long ago and some of them lived for God and some of them did not.

Some of those names are given and immediately bring to mind a person because we know that person and the name brings to mind the character of the person whose name is displayed in the Bible.

That is what names do.

Iím sure you know people that when their name is spoken certain emotions arise within.

We have good thoughts or bad thoughts or no thoughts.

We hear the name Hitler, or the name Judas, or the name David or the name Jesus and different emotions well up according to the name.

So there is more to a name than just what it sounds like, just how it plays off the lips.

This thought should be remembered by prospective parents who agonize for weeks over choosing a name from long lists of names in order to have a first name, middle name and last name that provide a smoothness of flow, almost rhythm if you please.

Along that line there are some names that fit together well and some that sound like a mismatch, and I suppose that varies from language to language.

Much work of parents who agonize long to get the right sound and flow to their daughterís name has been undone when she marries a man whose name no longer sounds good with their selection.

Mary Louise James now is Mary Louise Jablonsky.

Most of the time we may think that a name is a sound that we respond to when someoneís attention is desired.

When someone calls you to supper you know that it is you that is called because you recognize the sound of your name.

The postman knows where to deliver mail because of names that are written on the envelope.

But do these sounds and letters have anything to do with the name that God calls you, the name that God knows you by?

Do they have anything to do with the name that obviously has great value and that is mentioned in this Proverbs verse?

There is a question about a name in Shakespeareís play "Romeo and Juliet" where Juliet asks of Romeo, What's in a name? that which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet;

If you recall this play it was about two young people who fall in love but are members of two families that have been warring for decades.

But by this question Juliet tells Romeo that a name is an artificial and meaningless convention, and that she loves the person who is called "Montague", but not the Montague name and not the Montague family.

She says to Romeo:

What's Montague? It is nor hand, nor foot,
Nor arm, nor face, nor any other part
Belonging to a man. O, be some other name!
What's in a name? that which we call a rose
By any other name would smell as sweet;

So Romeo would, were he not Romeo call'd,
Retain that dear perfection which he owes
Without that title:--Romeo, doff thy name;
And for that name, which is no part of thee,
Take all myself.

In this short question "Whatís in a name", we can see that a personís given name does not automatically reflect the person.

What does my name say about me? It says nothing.

A personís name that is given at birth is not what God is talking about in this proverb.

A rose by any other name would smell as sweet!

The word rose in polish is R”ŻANY.

Does a rose smell less or more sweet in Poland because it is called R”ŻANY?

In Spanish the word rose is subiů, in Italian it is called sorto and the Dutch call it de roos, while in Portugal it is called rosa.

Even though the rose is called by many names it gives off a beautiful fragrance which everyone recognizes.

In other words a characteristic of a rose is its beautiful perfume, its beautiful fragrance.

The name the rose is given and what letters spell its name is irrelevant to the intensity of its fragrance.

A rose in Germany, France, or Poland smells as sweet as a rose in America.

The name of the rose does not increase or decrease the delightful perfume of the rose that fills the room.

Many names are chosen because they describe a characteristic of that which is named.

There are towns in our nation that boast of their characteristics by naming themselves Happy Camp, CA, Smileyberg, KS, Friendly WV.

There are also towns that obviously donít boast such as Boring OR, Dinkytown, Minnesota and Embarrass WI, or even Oddville, KY.

There are towns that make you hungry, such as Big Rock Candy Mountain, VT, Hot Coffee, MS, and Two Egg, Fl. Which is not so far from our town.

There are even towns that make you itch such as Bugscuffle, TN, Fleatown, OH, and our own town which is sometimes called Scratch Ankle, FL.

Why did anyone think to name their towns after body parts such as Brainy Boro, NJ or Bowlegs, OK, or Left Hand, WV or even Sweet Lips, TN?

Britain has towns with names like Crackpot, Fattahead, Goonbell, Giggleswick, Wigglesworth, Nether Poppleton, Yonder Bognie.

What about the town in England with the name of Ugley!

Would you be happy to be a member of the Ugley Women's Social Club that meets every month in the Ugley Village Hall.

Nearby Ugley are the hamlets of Nasty, Snoring and Seething.

Headlines in local papers are such as, "Nasty Man Weds Ugley Woman," or Snoring Man Takes Seething Bride."

Where these names came from I do not know but perhaps some describe something about the area or the people.

Very few of us get to choose the name that is legally attached to us.

But in this proverb Solomon tells us that we can choose our name.

We have a choice in what name we have for the name that is referred to in this verse is a name not given but a name that has been chosen.

The name in this verse does not speak of the name recorded on a birth certificate but the name that is described in this verse is the name earned in life, the name that reveals our character and not our reputation.

Look at the difference between reputation and character.

Reputation is: the estimation in which a person or thing is generally held; the position a person occupies or the standing he has in the opinion of others, in respect to attainments, integrity and the like.

Character: The combination of moral and other traits which make one the kind of person he actually is, as contrasted to what others think of him.

So reputation is not necessarily reality but reputation may be simply the image that is portrayed.

A man named Elbert Green Hubbard (1856Ė1915) said: Many a manís reputation would not know his character if they met on the street.

As Christians we are not to accept image as reality, reputation as character.

Isaiah 5:20 says: Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter.

But this is the age of image, of reputation building that has no connection with character.

Character is discounted as worthless, as reputation can be manufactured by the professional image makers to fulfill the customers every desire.

They can make any crook match the campaign posters that say "Vote for Honest John."

But we should remember that they are only manufacturing a reputation.

Reputation may be a shadow for substance, it may be projecting gold when in reality there is simply tinsel.

It is an illusion of diamonds only to find, upon digging deeper, glass rhinestones.

For reputation depends upon man's judgment.

Thomas Paine (1737Ė1809) said: Reputation is what men and women think of us. Character is what God and the angels know of us.

Abraham Lincoln (1809Ė1865) said: Character is like a tree and reputation like its shadow. The shadow is what we think of it; the tree is the real thing.

Jesus warns me, he warns you, about having a reputation where all men speak well of you.

In Luke 6:26 he says: Woe unto you when all men shall speak well of you! for so did their fathers to the false prophets.

A man who is spoken well of by all segments of society is not a good man but a weak man, a compromising man, a man of poor character for he accommodates himself to all men.

A man is known by his enemies.

A man who has no enemies should take the Lordís "woe" personally and get some enemies by taking a stand.

Oswald Chambers (1874Ė1917) who died at age 43 wrote: What we stand up for proves what our character is like. If we stand up for our reputation, it is a sign it needs standing up for! God never stands up for his saints, they do not need it. The devil tells lies about men, but no slander on earth can alter a manís character.

Slander only alters a manís reputation which may need altering.

So our proverb is not talking about reputation for reputation can easily be worn like a new suit.

Angelus Silesius (1624Ė1677) said: What is outside yourself does not convey much worth; Clothes do not make the man, the saddle not the horse.

People are so easily fooled by the outward.

Our proverbs verse is talking about good character that is displayed in daily living.

Character that reveals what the person really is, not the image, not the costume, not the mask.

This name is a name that describes you as you really are.

Dwight Lyman Moody (1837Ė1899) said it this way: Character is what you are in the dark.

The good name that is spoken of in this Proverb verse is a good name with God.

It is true that we desire the friendship of men and it is useful but it cannot be compared with the favor of God for God is greater than men and gaining His favor is what we ought to be about.

But we are to know that if our efforts are to gain Godís favor we will lose the esteem of men just as the Lord Jesus Christ lost the esteem of men.

It is good to have the esteem of men but only because it may help us to be more effective in serving God and to do good to the souls of men.

So we must remember that even in this we must first seek the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things shall be added unto you, and that includes having a good character.

But when good character is valued apart from its value in serving God then good character can easily become a trap for it will be relied on as sufficient to please God.

The Pharisees, who projected themselves to all as men of good character would not confess that Jesus was the Messiah because they loved the praise of men more that the praise of God.

We are to rejoice when our name is cast into the mud if it is cast there because of our service to God for the Bible tells us we are now partakers of the sufferings of Christ and as such we shall also be partakers of his glory.

We are not here to only please men, but we are to try for the sake of the Lord Jesus Christ to please men, to edify men, to bring men to Christ.

But if in this life we only seek to please men then we are not loyal and true servants of the Lord Jesus Christ.

During the early days of the Salvation Army, William Booth and his associates were bitterly attacked in the press by religious leaders and government leaders alike. Whenever his son, Bramwell, showed Booth a newspaper attack, the General would reply, "Bramwell, fifty years hence it will matter very little indeed how these people treated us; it will matter a great deal how we dealt with the work of God."

The right character carries us beyond the pleasing of men and remembers that the pleasing of God comes first.

If riches come they must be placed properly and not thought higher than maintaining a good name.

We must value our character above money, even above great money, and avoid everything that will corrupt even though it may enhance our reputation.

And overall we should be thankful to God, for any good name we may have, for all things come by his hand.

That good name is not to be hoarded and used to advance the world, but it is to be used in the advancement of His kingdom and for his glory, not for our own glory or advancement

 

Proverbs 22:1,  A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches, and loving favor rather than silver and gold.

Most of the time one may think that a name is a sound that one responds to when someoneís attention is desired.

When someone calls you to supper you know that it is you that is called because you recognize the sound of your name.

The postman knows where to deliver mail because of names.

But do these sounds and letters have anything to do with the name that God calls you?

Do they have anything to do with the name that obviously has great value and that is mentioned in this verse?

Shakespeare said that a rose by any other name would smell as sweet.

In other words a characteristic of a rose is its beautiful perfume, its beautiful fragrance.

The name the rose is given and what letters spell its name is irrelevant to the intensity of that fragrance.

A rose in Germany, France, or Poland smells as sweet as a rose in America.

The name of the rose does not increase or decrease the delightful perfume of the rose.

Many names are chosen because they describe a characteristic of that which is named. Britain has towns with names like Crackpot, Fattahead, Goonbell, Giggleswick, Wigglesworth, Nether Poppleton, Yonder Bognie.

What about the town in England with the name of Ugley!

Would you be happy to be a member of the Ugley Women's Institute that meets every month in the Ugley Village Hall. Nearby Ugley are the hamlets of Nasty, Snoring and Seething.

Headlines in local papers are such as, "Nasty Man Weds Ugley Woman," or Snoring Man Takes Seething Bride."

Where these names came from I do not know but perhaps some describe something about the area or the people.

Very few of us get to choose the name that is legally attached to us.

But in this proverb Solomon tells us that we can choose our name.

We have a choice in what name we have for the name that is referred to in this verse is a name not given but a name that has been chosen.

The name in this verse does not speak of the name recorded on a birth certificate but the name that is described in this verse is the name earned in life, the name that reveals our character and not our reputation.

Look at the difference between reputation and character.

Reputation:  The estimation in which a person or thing is generally held; the position a person occupies or the standing he has in the opinion of others, in respect to attainments, integrity and the like

Character:  The combination of moral and other traits which make one the kind of person he actually is, as contrasted to what others think of him.

So reputation may not be reality but image.

Isaiah 5:20 says,  Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter.

Reputation may be shadow for substance, tinsel for gold, the diamond illusion for the real stone. For reputation depends upon man's judgment.

Jesus warns us about having a reputation where all men speak well of you. In Luke 6:26 he says,  Woe unto you when all men shall speak well of you! for so did their fathers to the false prophets.

So our proverb is not talking about reputation for reputation can easily be worn like a new suit.

People are so easily fooled by the outward.

This verse is talking about good character that is displayed in daily living.

Character that reveals what the person really is, not the image, not the costume, not the mask.

This name is a name that describes you as you really are. Solomon says that if this name is good it is more valuable than, not just common riches, but great riches.

 

Proverbs 22:1,  A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches, and loving favor rather than silver and gold.

BERNICE, BETH, BETTY, BRENDA, BRUCE, CAROLYN, CHRIS, DAVID, DAYTON, DORIS, EARL, EVA, KRISTIN, LISA, LUDWIG, MARYANN,

MIKE, NANCY, NANCY, NORMA, OLLIE, PATRICIA, PATRICIA, PHILIP, RANDALL, SHARON, TARA, VIOLET, VONCILLE.

What is your name? In this Sunday School Class we have one Bennett, three Brainards, one Carmichael, two Donahoughs, two Douglas', two Farringtons, one Galoway, two Harringtons, two Hobbs, two Lydons, one Manley, one Nobles, three Opagers, one Peppard, one Roberts, one Schmitz, and two Whitneys.

All of these names are sounds that you respond to when someone wants your attention.

When someone calls you to supper you know that it is you that is called because you recognize the sound of your name.

The postman knows where to deliver mail because of names.

But do these sounds and letters have anything to do with the name that God calls you?

Do they have anything to do with the name that obviously has great value and that is mentioned in this verse?

Shakespeare said that a rose by any other name would smell as sweet.

In other words a characteristic of a rose is its beautiful perfume, its beautiful fragrance.

The name the rose is given and what letters spell its name is not relevant to the intensity of that fragrance.

A rose in Germany, France, Poland smells as sweet as a rose in America.

The name of the rose does not increase or decrease the perfume of the rose.

Many names are chosen because they describe a characteristic of that which is named. What about Fancy in St. Vincent, Mr. Douglas!

What about these strange names in Britain?

Towns with names like Crackpot, Fattahead, Goonbell, Giggleswick, Wigglesworth, Nether Poppleton, Yonder Bognie.

What about the town in England with the name of Ugley! Would you be happy to be a member of the Ugley Women's Institute that meets every month in the Ugley Village Hall.

Nearby Ugley are the hamlets of Nasty, Snoring and Seething.

Headlines in local papers are such as, "Nasty Man Weds Ugley Woman," or Snoring Man Takes Seething Bride."

Where these names came from I do not know but perhaps some describe something about the area or the people.

Here in this verse Solomon tells us that we can choose our name.

We have a choice in what name we have. The name that is referred to in this verse is a name that you have not been given but a name that you have chosen.

The name in this verse does not speak of the name on our birth certificate but the name that is described in this verse is the name we earn in life, the name that reveals our character, some may call it our reputation.

But look at the difference between reputation and character.

Reputation: The estimation in which a person or thing is generally held; the position a person occupies or the standing he has in the opinion of others, in respect to attainments, integrity and the like

Character: The combination of moral and other traits which make one the kind of person he actually is, as contrasted to what others think of him.

So reputation may not be reality but image.

Isaiah 5:20 says: Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter.

Reputation may be shadow for substance, tinsel for gold, the diamond illusion for the real stone.

Reputation depends upon man's judgment.

Jesus warns us about having a reputation where all men speak well of you.

In Luke 6:26 he says: Woe unto you when all men shall speak well of you! for so did their fathers to the false prophets.

This verse is not talking about reputation. Reputation can be faked.

People can be fooled. This verse is talking about good character that is displayed in daily living.

Character that reveals the true you. Character that reveals what the person really is.

Not the image, not the costume, not the mask. This name is a name that describes you as you really are.

Solomon says that if this name is good it is more valuable than, not just common riches, but great riches.

Article in "The Projector" for Proverbs 22:1, A GOOD NAME