The writer of Proverbs hears voices. The voices from “men of perverted speech” who delight in evil, on one hand, and the voice of “the adulteress with her smooth words” mocking covenant and commitment on the other. Their voices invite the unsuspecting down the ways of darkness. Her voice, down the paths of death. They delight in the perverseness of evil. She finds pleasure in tempting the unsuspecting with forbidden fruit.
You sense these aren’t insignificant voices. They are loud and proud. But nor are they obvious calls to destruction. Having found their place in the world, they are subtle and insidious. Presenting their words as truth, they can be quite convincing–luring many to darkness and destruction.
And so, with this awareness of such voices, the writer or Proverbs pleads with his son, “Make your ear attentive to wisdom, incline your heart to understanding.”
. . . yes, if you call out for insight and raise your voice for understanding, if you seek it like silver and search for it as for hidden treasures, then you will understand the fear of the LORD and find the knowledge of God.
(Proverbs 2:3-5 ESV)
Therein lies the key to recognizing the invitations into darkness and refusing the allure of infidelity. Understanding the fear of the LORD. Finding the knowledge of God. But it doesn’t come about apart from intentional effort. Apart from seeking wisdom.
Do nothing, and the voices prevail. Go with the flow and you’ll find yourself before the men’s pulpit and the adulteress’s door.
But the promise is that, if we will seek wisdom, we’ll find the fear of the Lord. That if we ask for the knowledge of God, we will be given the tools to discern the true from the false and navigate through the darkness and deception. That if we knock on heaven’s door, it will be opened.
For the LORD gives wisdom; from His mouth come knowledge and understanding; He stores up sound wisdom for the upright; He is a shield to those who walk in integrity, guarding the paths of justice and watching over the way of His saints.
(Proverbs 2:6-8 ESV)
The voices are exposed. Protection is promised. The power to walk in ways of justice and integrity is provided. If we will seek wisdom.
If we will intentionally receive the word of God. If we will purposefully treasure up His commands and be attentive to His counsel. If we will open our Bibles daily and turn our ears and hearts to receive God’s breathed out revelation. Do that, and
. . . wisdom will come into your heart, and knowledge will be pleasant to your soul; discretion will watch over you, understanding will guard you, delivering you from the way of evil . . .
(Proverbs 2:10b-12a ESV)
Do nothing and the voices will prevail. Settle for the default, and you’re settling for destruction. Consider His Word an option, and the perverted speech of evil men will start sounding like smart thinking. Make everything else a priority, don’t be surprised if you find yourself at the lustful lady’s door.
But seek wisdom and the promise is sure.
So you will walk in the way of the good and keep to the paths of the righteous.
(Proverbs 2:20 ESV)
By God’s unfailing grace. For God’s everlasting glory.