Proverbs 22:21, That I might make thee know the certainty of the words of truth; that thou mightest answer the words of truth to them that send unto thee?
A person of uncertainty might say: I just don't know if I can know with full assurance that I am going to heaven.
How can I believe in the resurrection of Jesus Christ in light of modern science?
We ought to convene a group of scholars to solve this mystery once and for all.
I'm not sure that Christ is coming back to this earth literally or in Spirit in the hearts of men.
All these questions about premillenism, post millenism or amillenism just confuse me.
So many opinions, so many voices calling on my ear.
There are so many things I don't know.
I don't even know if I can know! I just doubt so much!
Doubt! So much doubt!
Does God intend for us to be a confused and doubting people?
Why is there so much doubt and confusion? Is it God's fault?
Has he not given us enough truth to dispel doubt or is there a vacuum of knowledge that leads us to doubt?
This proverb convinces otherwise because the verses of this passage lead to the conclusion that one can have certainty of the words of truth.
One can have confidence in the words of truth
Look at the words of Proverbs 22:17-21 and look at the order of the words that lead one to certainty of the words of truth.
How does one know the certainty of the words of truth?
1) Bow down thy ear, yield your ear to me.
Let me into your ear. Don't lend it to me! Give it to me!
Don't let your ear be occupied with other things which stop it from being yielded to me.
Don't let your ear turn itself off from me through sleep or inattention.
Wake up and listen! Pay attention to me.
2) Hear the words of the wise, take into your very being, your innermost being the words that I speak so they may be your very life.
3) Apply thine heart to my knowledge, let my knowledge make a difference in your life.
Permit my knowledge to do its work in you.
Allow it to bring forth useful fruit in your life.
4) Keep them within thee, don't let the words of the wise dim or distort or drift away.
Keep a daily re-supply of the words of the wise.
Treat the words of the wise as though they were manna from God, to be gathered and used each day.
Get a re-supply each day necessary to replenish and refresh the heart.
A supply to be given out to others by lips that are fit to speak the words of the wise, the words of knowledge.
5) Lips fit to serve because they have been fitted by the master builder, the word of God.
In whom this process will lead the bowed, the hearing, the applying, the keeping person to trust.
I have written to thee excellent things in counsels and knowledge,
my word is without comparison,
there is no doubt that my word is not of this world,
my word has excellencies that far surpass all that man values on this earth,
it is far above rubies and diamonds and power and kingdoms of men.
It is completely trustworthy and those with a bowing and hearing ear, a heart that applies and keeps, and lips that are fitted to speak truth will know the certainty of the words of truth.
So why is there so much doubt?
The answer lies at the door of the unyielded ear, the unhearing ear, the unapplying and unkeeping heart, the unfitted lips.
Doubt will disappear if the ear is bowed.
If the ear is bowed the ear will hear.
If the ear hears the heart will apply and keep.
If the heart applies and keeps, the lips will be fitted to speak truth.
Then that heart will know for certainty the words of truth and doubt will not find a home in that heart.
But what outworks from knowing the certainty of the words of truth?
What comes about by being assured of the words of truth?
What happens when there is confidence in the words of truth?
Peter said it in 1 Peter 3:15 when he wrote to, ... sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: (separate yourself unto God and acknowledge him as your Lord, abide in Christ, bow down your ear and hear, apply, keep,) and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:
So the outworking of the process that is described in this passage is to be ready to provide an answer for the hope that lies within you .......but it must be an answer using the words of truth that you are certain of.
Is not this what the last part of today's proverb tells us?
that thou mightest answer the words of truth to them that send unto thee?
to them that ask you a reason of the hope that is in you.
So when we tell others about our faith we are to do so answering with the words of truth.
We are to use scripture in our witness.
We are not to stand in the wisdom of men, in the tradition of men, but in the power of God.
The Gospel is the power of God unto salvation and the Gospel is to be preached if folks are to be brought to Christ.
They will not be brought to Christ without the Gospel!
Church programs will not do.
Improvement seminars will be of no help!
Your attractive personality will not avail.
Logical arguments that come from your intelligence will fail.
Telling others only about God's blessings on your life will be in vain unless it includes the good news of Christ.
Your personal testimony will only help if it includes the Gospel, the good news of Christ's death, burial and resurrection.
God wants us to know the certainty of the words of truth ourselves so that we may use the words of truth to those to whomsoever we witness Christ.