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Shepherds Hill Homestead » Bible Study, Proverbs 31 Woman » Proverbs 31:26

Proverbs 31:26

She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness.

Precious Innocent Lips

Openeth -

Strong’s H6605 – pathach

1) to open

a) (Qal) to open

b) (Niphal) to be opened, be let loose, be thrown open

c) (Piel)

1) to free

2) to loosen

3) to open, open oneself

d) (Hithpael) to loose oneself

2) to carve, engrave

a) (Piel) to engrave

b) (Pual) to be engraved

She openeth – hmmmmm, look at “b” – be let loose, be thrown open.  Now that paints are fairly clear picture doesn’t it.  How many times in our lives have we opened our mouth and just let loose – wagging our tongues, blabbing anything and everything that comes into our heads.  Oh Father – forgive us!  How many jokes are there about the stereotypical woman with her mouth wide open?  Sadly, there is a great deal of truth in that stereotype.  On the other hand I have met a number of women in my life who are not very bright, nor very deep spiritually – in fact very shallow spiritually, but because they are quiet they are considered Godly and wise.  Interesting.

Have you ever heard the phrase “open a can of worms”?  I actually thought of that when I read this definition because so often when a person speaks it seems that there are all kind of directions their statements can take.  We know that written words, especially through emails and texts, do not always convey exactly what is wanted because there is no intonation in the words, no fluctuation of tone, no facial expression to accompany those words and therefore misunderstanding becomes more common.  I saw a funny sign the other day about punctuation:

 Funny!  But how true it is that simple mistakes in punctuation as well as phrasing and tone can change a simple statement to something cruel and brutal.  How important it is to guard our mouth!  Have you ever seen a scary movie and just as the person gets to the door the music begins to swell and the drums begin to beat loudly and more rapidly and as the door opens the music is almost deafening?  What if that happened every time our lips began to part for us to speak? :-)   I think we would definitely be a bit more cautious opening our mouths, wouldn’t we?!!!!

 Notice also number 2 of our Strong’s definition above: to carve, engrave.  It really causes me to realize that words have so much strength, so much force, that they could be permanently engraved on someone’s heart and mind.  I remember clearly things that were said to me years ago when I was a child  that still come back in my mind – some sweet, kind words and some harsh and hurtful.  Truly it is like they are engraved in my memory and though they cannot and do not hurt me anymore, the memory is still there.  As we mature in Christ, those hurts heal – or at least they should heal, but the memory is not gone.  I think the Lord allows the memory to stay to help us remember where He brought us from.  When you can look back on painful and sorrowful times and it not hurt you anymore, then you know you are healed.  If you are still hurting then you need to go to the Father and seek His healing touch in those areas.  That being said, we need to examine the areas we have wounded others with our words.

Wisdom – Strong’s H2451 – chokmah

1) wisdom

a) skill (in war)

b) wisdom (in administration)

c) shrewdness, wisdom

d) wisdom, prudence (in religious affairs)

e) wisdom (ethical and religious)

Webster’s definition of Wisdom:

1    a : accumulated philosophic or scientific learning : knowledge

b : ability to discern inner qualities and relationships : insight

c : good sense : judgment

d : generally accepted belief

2 : a wise attitude, belief, or course of action

3 : the teachings of the ancient wise men

Some of the aspects listed in this definition in Webster’s are intriguing because, as we think them out, I wonder if they are accurate.   I refer specifically to letter “d” under section “1″ -  “generally accepted belief”.  I am not a scholar but I do believe that simply because an idea is “generally accepted”, that does not make it wise.  There was a generally accepted idea for centuries that the Earth was flat like a table – obviously that was not wisdom.  This is one example.

I don’t think there is a person on the planet who does not wish to be considered wise.  It is one of the highest compliments, don’t you agree? To have discernment, insight, good judgment and knowledge is much to be desired.  You desire these things or you would not be seeking a Bible Study on Proverbs 31.

I desire them and that is why I am studying Proverbs 31.

Eve desired to be wise and that is one of the reasons she ate the forbidden fruit:  “And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.”   Genesis 3:6

The question is did she truly want wisdom or did she want knowledge.  She already knew good – God had shown her all that He had made in the garden and “it was good”.  He had a relationship with her – we KNOW that was good.  She had a wonderful, loving husband and that is always good.  She had all that she needed physically.  All her needs were met.  Intellectually she was stimulated – I say that because she had daily conversations with the Creator of the Universe.  She was a participant in caring for this incredible garden.  But something was obviously lacking.  All her knowledge was not enough for her.  She was not content.  So her eyes turned toward that which was forbidden to her.  And her excuse for partaking in this forbidden thing – it would make her wise.  NO, she thought it would make her like God – she already had everything she needed in life, but she wanted to be like God and she didn’t care if it meant destroying everything else.  She wanted power and control.

Look at number 1. a. under Webster’s definition – accumulated philosophic or scientific learning : knowledge.  She was about to obtain scientific learning.  She was accumulating philosophic knowledge, not Godly wisdom.

philosophy 

  • Love and pursuit of wisdom by intellectual means and moral self-discipline.
  • Investigation of the nature, causes, or principles of reality, knowledge, or values, based on logical reasoning rather than empirical methods.
  • The critical analysis of fundamental assumptions or beliefs.

 

I don’t want to overkill on definitions here but let’s be sure of what we are talking about.  Eve did not pursue wisdom, not Godly wisdom. She looked at the tree – the FORDIDDEN tree and then pondered on its merits.  It looked pretty and the fruit looked tasty and nutritious and oh, so beneficial.  So she decided – SHE decided – that she knew better than God or her husband because SHE had examined the situation and made her conclusion.  Did she even have to eat the fruit to have been in rebellion?  Hmmm I wonder.  Was she not already in rebellion in her mind and in her heart?  All that pondering and determining and making those decisions essentially saying that she knew more than God and her husband – wasn’t the deed already done.  I think it was.

That reminds me of something in the book of Matthew -  Matthew 15:19, 20a, “For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies: These are the things which defile a man:”

Proverbs 9:10 tells us, “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding.” Did Eve have the fear of the Lord?  Did she truly honor and respect His Word or did she think she could see the situation a bit better than He could.  I mean, after all, He was just floating around Heaven, right?!  He only came down once a day in the afternoon and chit-chatted with Adam in the garden.  How could GOD know all about that tree?  She had examined it, pondered it and SHE had it all figured out.  Sisters – are we using God’s wisdom or are we leaning to our own understanding and making our conclusions thusly?

Do we want the world’s philosophical idea of wisdom or do we want God-given wisdom.  Women often times are quick thinkers.  I mean we think we can come to conclusions about things much more quickly than men do and we tend to hold those conclusions as if they are absolute truth like a bulldog holding a bone.  The problem is that while we hold those philosophies and believe that we have some sort of revelation, oftentimes we do not have the wisdom that our knowledge may require.  This leads us right into the next part of this verse. Before I go there let me add one more point to “she openeth her mouth with wisdom” – not only is this addressing what comes out of her mouth but also WHEN she opens her mouth.  Sisters – WE TALK TOO MUCH, TOO OFTEN and TOO QUICKLY.  Let us use God’s wisdom and learn when NOT to speak even if we feel confident in what we want to say.  I exhort you and I exhort myself in this.

Next Phrase – “and in her tongue is the law of kindness.”

Strong’s H2617 – checed

1) goodness, kindness, faithfulness

*2) a reproach, shame

We all can truly understand what kindness is.  We may not be able to define in words but we know it when we see it or hear it, don’t we?  The word law is defined as rule – so our rule should be to speak in kindness.  Now I do want to say that sometimes it may seem that the greatest kindness we can speak is perceived as harsh, but in that we must learn how to phrase things.  We must use that Godly wisdom in choosing our words, tone, facial expression so that what we say can be absorbed by the other person and leave them feeling loved and cherished.  Do you know what I mean?  A rebuke can be spoken in complete kindness and the other person can walk away feeling the conviction of the Holy Spirit but also feeling loved.  Let us make every endeavor to do this with each and every person we speak to – including ourselves.  Remember the phrase “you can catch more flies with honey” – it is a good thing to remember.  Those around you will appreciate you more if you are speaking with kindness and that can only come when you have the love of the Lord emanating from you.

I think I will close this here – so excited to read your comments on this part of our study.  Please do share so that we all can work through this study together!!

*(I have looked at the #2 portion of this definition in the scripture and several sources of translation but I don’t think it is pertinent to this study. Out of 248 uses of this word in the Bible there are only 2 times when this is used as the root of these two words and therefore is not necessary to be added into this verse as a definition.)

Angelia

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"It is of the LORD's mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness. The LORD is my portion, saith my soul; therefore will I hope in him." Lamentations 3:22-24

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11 Responses to "Proverbs 31:26"

  1. Dessa says:

    Thank you for this study. It really has spoken to me today and I needed this more than you know.

  2. Virginia says:

    Thank you so much for this study this morning. It really jumped out at me today and made me think. I really truely need to watch what I say and how I say it. Some times what I say and what I’m meaning don’t come across very well.

    1. Angelia Angelia says:

      I know exactly what you mean Ginny!! I have the same problem!! God is merciful!

  3. Cath says:

    Deaest Angie
    Your Proverbs Study is always such a kick in the head for me. And I truly mean that in a good way!

    “The question is did she truly want wisdom or did she want knowledge” is what stopped me cold this morning. I have been struggling for the past while (as you know) with the truth. Why we do, what we do, when we do it. Celebrating who we do, when and why. It has been overwhelming at times as I search for the truth, the whole truth AND NOTHING BUT THE TRUTH. But one very important detail which I missed during all my fact-finding and knowledge-seeking was simply love. By delving too deeply into that pit of knowledge, I found a lot of facts, but I came up EMPTY! It was love that was simply missing and without it, this new found knowledge was useless. Soooo, I’ve come up with this…who cares when Jesus or Yeshua (or whatever name people have to call Him or you’re not doing it right) was actually born….and how and why that is celebrated. Really, it’s just about love. Our love for Him and His love for us!
    Sorry, just had to share that…
    Much love to you,
    Cath

  4. Lisa says:

    Wow, Cath. Good point!

    I love how the two sentences are paired in this verse: “She openeth her mouth with wisdom, and in her tongue is the law of kindness.” Telling the truth, or speaking wisdom without love or kindness is worthless! (1 Cor. 13:1-2) And sometimes we make mistakes in what we say, but if it is said with a loving spirit, that makes up for a lot. (Prov. 10:12)

    Also, I’ve become painfully aware over the Christmas holidays, with all the get togethers and such, that it is sooooooo easy to slip up with our mouths. For the last couple of days I’ve been reading Psalm 141, especially vs. 3 and 4. How I need HIS help in this area of my mouth!!

    1. Angelia Angelia says:

      You are so right, Lisa – it is so easy to slip!! We all need His help in this area!! Hugs!

  5. Shellie says:

    God is so good! And His timing is always perfect! I have lately been pondering the things about myself that need work. What in my relationships gives clues to the things I need to do differently or fix? And one clear answer that came to me was what comes out of my mouth and how it comes out. How’s that for timing? :)

    So often I have found myself saying something without thinking because I’m distracted with another task or overly tired. And sometimes those things might not be said with a very nice tone! I’ve been working on paying better attention to what I’m saying when I speak and thinking before I do. It is easiest to do these things with those you live with every day. Why is that? With people outside the home we take time to be sweet and polite? Why not with those we live? Do they not deserve that same courtesy?

    In pondering this I have also found that it is hard to be firm with the children without sounding mean-toned. However it is very possible to take a moment to take a breath before getting to the heart of the matter with a child who has done something to get into serious trouble. That breath gives us a moment to calm down, collect our thoughts and choose words carefully so the child does not feel stupid or like I’m putting them down simply because of the words chosen or the tone used. I’ve tried to be a good momma and teach my children good behaviors, manners, godly attitudes and all those things that teach them right from wrong as well as being good citizens. It worked well with our first 3 children and we never had much trouble. They understood they’d done wrong, the consequences, and not to do it again all without feeling attacked or unloved. However it was only recently that I came to realize our last child (11 yr. old girl) takes our talks (when in trouble) much deeper to heart and while to me it was simply another explaining of why we don’t do something and trying to find out why she had, to her something in my tone was telling her she wasn’t very smart. Which was NOT my intention ever!! I have since learned what tone and words get my point across without making her feel like I find something wrong with her or her intelligence. Words can be so powerful! Tones can be even more so at times!

    This is a wonderful lesson, yet again, and God is so gracious to continue to share these things with us. I am blessed every time I get to read a new one or re-read an old one!

  6. Debbie Snyder says:

    This is great! My husband and I were just talking about how in a multitude of words there lacketh not sin and he that refraineth his lips is wise. It’s so good to see this and I so want to be better in this area. Thank you so much for this great study and may God help us to glorify Him with the use of our tongues.

  7. Debbie Snyder says:

    Just love you Angela and appreciate you so!

  8. Julia says:

    Angie
    Thank you. I am still reading your studies and this one was a blessing. I thank God for how he has used you. I agree with shellie who pointed out how we can be sweet to the outside world but when it comes to family, at least for me, I get impatient and unlovely. I really want to change that. It’s hard because no one in my family speaks in kind tones, expressions, or words most of the time(maybe because i live with three brothers). But I want to be different. With the power of the Holy Spirit I know I can change. God Bless us all as we seek His wisdom.

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