Proverbs (Part 039) - Pro 4:3-6


3. Pro 4:3 - "For I was my father's son, tender and only beloved in the sight of my mother." A. For I was my father's son, i. Solomon was David's son (Pro 1:1). ii. He was the son the Lord gave to David after the child he conceived in adultery with Bathsheba died (2Sa 12:22-24). iii. David had many sons, but Solomon was chosen to be king in his stead (1Ch 28:5). iv. God loved Solomon (2Sa 12:24), and therefore so did David, being a man after God's own heart (Act 13:22). v. David loved Solomon and prayed that God would give him a perfect heart to keep His commandments (1Ch 29:19). B. tender and only beloved in the sight of my mother. i. Tender adj. - III. Tender toward or in regard to others. 8. a. Of persons, their feelings, or the expression of these: Characterized by, exhibiting, or expressing delicacy of feeling or susceptibility to the gentle emotions; kind, loving, gentle, mild, affectionate. b. transf. That is the object of tender feeling; tenderly loved; dear, beloved, precious. ii. Beloved adj. - A. ppl. adj. Loved. (Often well-, best-, first-, etc.) iii. Only adj. - 1. One, without companions or society; solitary, lonely. iv. Solomon was not the only son of his mother Bathsheba (1Ch 3:5). a. But he was the only son who was the object of her tender love and affection. b. In other words, he was her favorite. v. Because of his beloved status, both of his parents taught him the ways of God when he was young and tender (Pro 4:4; Pro 31:1). vi. "If parents may ever love one child better than another, it must not be till it plainly appears that God does so." (Matthew Henry's Commentary, Pro 4:1-13) 4. Pro 4:4 - "He taught me also, and said unto me, Let thine heart retain my words: keep my commandments, and live." A. He taught me also, i. David loved Solomon and therefore taught him. ii. David failed as a father in training some of his other sons such as Absolom (2Sa 15:6), Amnon (2Sa 13:14, 21), and Adonijah (1Ki 1:6). iii. But with Solomon he did his duty as a father and taught him the scriptures (Eph 6:4). a. The other three sons came first (2Sa 3:2-4); Solomon came later (2Sa 12:24). b. David was wise in his later end (Pro 19:20). c. It's never too late to make changes and do things better. B. and said unto me, Let thine heart retain my words: keep my commandments, and live. i. Solomon listened to his father's instruction, remembered it, and then repeated it to his son. a. Matthew Henry said it well. b. "What his parents taught him he teaches others. Observe, [1.] When Solomon was grown up he not only remembered, but took a pleasure in repeating, the good lessons his parents taught him when he was a child. He did not forget them, so deep were the impressions they made upon him. He was not ashamed of them, such a high value had he for them, nor did he look upon them as the childish things, the mean things, which, when he became a man, a king, he should put away, as a disparagement to him; much less did he repeat them: as some wicked children have done, to ridicule them, and make his companions merry with them, priding himself that he had got clear from grave lessons and restraints. [2.] Though Solomon was a wise man himself, and divinely inspired, yet, when he was to teach wisdom, he did not think it below him to quote his father and to make use of his words. Those that would learn well, and teach well, in religion, must not affect new-found notions and new-coined phrases, so as to look with contempt upon the knowledge and language of their predecessors; if we must keep to the good old way, why should we scorn the good old words? Jer 6:16. [3.] Solomon, having been well educated by his parents, thought himself thereby obliged to give his children a good education, the same that his parents had given him; and this is one way in which we must requite our parents for the pains they took with us, even by showing piety at home, 1Ti 5:4. They taught us, not only that we might learn ourselves, but that we might teach our children, the good knowledge of God, Psa 78:6. And we are false to a trust if we do not; for the sacred deposit of religious doctrine and law was lodged in our hands with a charge to transmit it pure and entire to those that shall come after us, 2Ti 2:2. [4.] Solomon enforces his exhortations with the authority of his father David, a man famous in his generation upon all accounts. Be it taken notice of, to the honour of religion, that the wisest and best men in every age have been most zealous, not only for the practice of it themselves, but for the propagating of it to others; and we should therefore continue in the things which we have learned, knowing of whom we have learned them, 2Ti 3:14." (Matthew Henry's Commentary, Pro 4:1-13) ii. We must retain God's words (Psa 119:16). a. Retain v. - 1. a. To restrain; to hold back, check, or stop; to prevent or hinder. Obs. c. To keep in custody or under control; to prevent from departing, issuing, or separating; to hold fixed in some place or position. b. When we retain God's words, we don't let them depart from our minds. c. In other words we remember them. iii. When we retain God's words, we can then keep His commandments. iv. When we keep his commandments we will live a long and happy life (Pro 3:1-2). 5. Pro 4:5 - "Get wisdom, get understanding: forget it not; neither decline from the words of my mouth." A. Get wisdom, get understanding: i. This is an imperative sentence. ii. It is not a suggestion, but a command. iii. It doesn't say: a. It's a good idea to get wisdom and understanding. b. You should consider getting wisdom and understanding. c. Hope for wisdom and understanding. d. I want you to get wisdom and understanding. iv. Wisdom and understanding a. Wisdom n. - 1. a. Capacity of judging rightly in matters relating to life and conduct; soundness of judgement in the choice of means and ends; sometimes, less strictly, sound sense, esp. in practical affairs: opp. to folly. b. Understanding n. - 1. a. (Without article.) Power or ability to understand; intellect, intelligence. b. of understanding, intelligent, capable of judging with knowledge. Similarly of some, of no, understanding. c. With the: The faculty of comprehending and reasoning; the intellect. c. Understand v. - 1. To comprehend; to apprehend the meaning or import of; to grasp the idea of. b. To be thoroughly acquainted or familiar with (an art, profession, etc.); to be able to practise or deal with properly. c. To apprehend clearly the character or nature of (a person). Also refl. 2. To comprehend by knowing the meaning of the words employed; to be acquainted with (a language) to this extent. b. To grasp the meaning or purport of the words (or signs) used by (a person). II. intr. 10. To have comprehension or understanding (in general or in a particular matter). v. It requires effort and planning to get wisdom and understanding. a. Get v. - I. trans. To obtain, procure. 1. a. To obtain possession of (property, etc.) as the result of effort or contrivance. (i) Effort n. - 1. Power: also, pl. powers, properties. Obs. 2. a. A strenuous putting forth of power, physical or mental; a laborious attempt; a struggle. (ii) Contrivance n. - 1. The action of contriving or ingeniously endeavouring the accomplishment of anything; the bringing to pass by planning, scheming, or stratagem; manœuvring, plotting; deceitful practice. b. Substituting the definitions into the verse, we learn that we need to exert mental effort and intentionally plan to obtain the ability to comprehend the word of God, and then use it to exercise sound judgment to make good decisions in our lives. vi. How do we get wisdom and understanding? a. It is through God's precepts that we get understanding (Psa 119:104). b. Wisdom comes from God's mouth (His word) (Pro 2:6). c. In order to get wisdom and understanding, we need to read and study the Bible regularly and earnestly pray to God for understanding of it (Pro 2:1-5; Jam 1:5-7). vii. The importance of getting wisdom and understanding. a. So important it is to get wisdom and understanding that Solomon repeated it (Pro 4:7). b. It is better to get wisdom and understanding than gold and silver (Pro 16:16). c. Wisdom and understanding are unique in the book or Proverbs because they are the only things in the entire book that Solomon imperatively commands us to "get." B. forget it not; i. Just as important as getting wisdom is not forgetting it. ii. Forget v. - 1. trans. To lose remembrance of; to cease to retain in one's memory. iii. Forgetting God's commandments will lead us into sin and false worship (Deut 4:23). iv. If we forget God's word, we will forget the LORD Himself (Deut 8:11). v. We must be continually taught the word of God and teach it to our children to prevent us and them from forgetting it (Psa 78:4-7). vi. If we delight in God's word, we will not forget it (Psa 119:16). vii. Being small and weak is no excuse for forgetting God's precepts (Psa 119:141). C. neither decline from the words of my mouth. i. Decline v. - 1. a. To turn or bend aside; to deviate (from the straight course); to turn away. 3. fig. a. To turn aside in conduct; esp. to swerve or fall away (from rectitude, duty, allegiance, instructions, etc.). ii. If we get wisdom and understanding and remember it by constant application in our lives, we will not fall away from God's commandments. iii. If we do so, we will not fall away even in times of persecution (Psa 119:157).