Wisdom From Proverbs: Peer Pressure and Other Things
Song to set the mood:
So I am writing a series of studies about the book of Proverbs, and applying them to everyday life. Proverbs is one of my favorite books of the bible, I think I have read it more than any other book. I decided it would be good to combine my own studies with a series of posts, which will include my own thoughts, making these posts a bit more journal-like than my others. It may not be as polished, because I’m just going to write from the heart. In addition to my own words, I’m going to include some information that I curate from other sources.
Proverbs is one of my favorite books because it has wisdom that can be applied to every area of life: your personal spiritual life, business, family, and friends. I hope I can do it justice.
In my previous post, I delved into Proverbs 1:1-7, you can read it here:
The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.
8 My son, hear the instruction of thy father, and forsake not the law of thy mother:
9 For they shall be an ornament of grace unto thy head, and chains about thy neck.
10 My son, if sinners entice thee, consent thou not.
11 If they say, Come with us, let us lay wait for blood, let us lurk privily for the innocent without cause:
12 Let us swallow them up alive as the grave; and whole, as those that go down into the pit:
13 We shall find all precious substance, we shall fill our houses with spoil:
14 Cast in thy lot among us; let us all have one purse:
15 My son, walk not thou in the way with them; refrain thy foot from their path:
16 For their feet run to evil, and make haste to shed blood.
17 Surely in vain the net is spread in the sight of any bird.
18 And they lay wait for their own blood; they lurk privily for their own lives.
19 So are the ways of every one that is greedy of gain; which taketh away the life of the owners thereof.
It seems to me that here King Solomon, who wrote the book of Proverbs, is talking to a young man, instructing him not to give into peer pressure. Even more than that, it seems to be instruction to this young man to choose his friends wisely. You could call this a written “dad” lecture. King Solomon was a father himself, he had several sons, but the only one that I am aware of, mentioned in scripture, is Rehoboam, who became King when Solomon died. Rehoboam did not take his father’s advice, and he did not grow up to become a good man, or a good king. His conduct and poor choice of friends, whose bad advice he followed, caused a split, and he lost nearly all of his kingdom. Let’s take a closer look at who Rehoboam was, starting with his story in the bible, then what history says about him.
2 Chronicles 9:31 records the death of King Solomon, and Rehoboam ascending to the throne of Israel: “And Solomon slept with his fathers, and he was buried in the city of David his father: and Rehoboam his son reigned in his stead.”
Next, the rest of Rehoboam’s story is told in the next chapter:
And Rehoboam went to Shechem: for to Shechem were all Israel come to make him king.
2 And it came to pass, when Jeroboam the son of Nebat, who was in Egypt, whither he had fled from the presence of Solomon the king, heard it, that Jeroboam returned out of Egypt.
3 And they sent and called him. So Jeroboam and all Israel came and spake to Rehoboam, saying,
4 Thy father made our yoke grievous: now therefore ease thou somewhat the grievous servitude of thy father, and his heavy yoke that he put upon us, and we will serve thee.
5 And he said unto them, Come again unto me after three days. And the people departed.
6 And king Rehoboam took counsel with the old men that had stood before Solomon his father while he yet lived, saying, What counsel give ye me to return answer to this people?
7 And they spake unto him, saying, If thou be kind to this people, and please them, and speak good words to them, they will be thy servants for ever.
8 But he forsook the counsel which the old men gave him, and took counsel with the young men that were brought up with him, that stood before him.
9 And he said unto them, What advice give ye that we may return answer to this people, which have spoken to me, saying, Ease somewhat the yoke that thy father did put upon us?
10 And the young men that were brought up with him spake unto him, saying, Thus shalt thou answer the people that spake unto thee, saying, Thy father made our yoke heavy, but make thou it somewhat lighter for us; thus shalt thou say unto them, My little finger shall be thicker than my father’s loins.
11 For whereas my father put a heavy yoke upon you, I will put more to your yoke: my father chastised you with whips, but I will chastise you with scorpions.
12 So Jeroboam and all the people came to Rehoboam on the third day, as the king bade, saying, Come again to me on the third day.
13 And the king answered them roughly; and king Rehoboam forsook the counsel of the old men,
14 And answered them after the advice of the young men, saying, My father made your yoke heavy, but I will add thereto: my father chastised you with whips, but I will chastise you with scorpions.
15 So the king hearkened not unto the people: for the cause was of God, that the LORD might perform his word, which he spake by the hand of Ahijah the Shilonite to Jeroboam the son of Nebat.
16 And when all Israel saw that the king would not hearken unto them, the people answered the king, saying, What portion have we in David? and we have none inheritance in the son of Jesse: every man to your tents, O Israel: and now, David, see to thine own house. So all Israel went to their tents.
17 But as for the children of Israel that dwelt in the cities of Judah, Rehoboam reigned over them.
18 Then king Rehoboam sent Hadoram that was over the tribute; and the children of Israel stoned him with stones, that he died. But king Rehoboam made speed to get him up to his chariot, to flee to Jerusalem.
19 And Israel rebelled against the house of David unto this day.
Rehoboam tooks just three days to think about this, but he made the wrong choice. This mistake was quickly made, but he paid for it till the end of his life. The nation remained divided, and the northern kingdom ceased to serve Jehovah, and turned to idols instead.
Posted on December 2, 2016, in current events, Journal, Proverbs, word for today and tagged Bible application, Journal, Life, Peer pressure, Wisdom from Proverbs. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.