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Posted On 10/24/2014

Enemies of Wisdom


Enemies of wisdom

The book of Proverbs says wisdom is not far from us. All we really have to do is look for it. So what keeps us from seeing what is so obvious?  Here is a list of enemies who want to get in between us and wisdom.

1. Anger

  • Fools show their annoyance at once, but the prudent overlook an insult. 12:16
  • Starting a quarrel is like breaching a dam; so drop the matter before a dispute breaks out 17:14
  • Whoever is patient has great understanding, but one who is quick-tempered displays folly. 14:29
  • It is to one’s honor to avoid strife, but every fool is quick to quarrel. 20:3
  • Do not say, “I’ll pay you back for this wrong!” Wait for the Lord, and he will avenge you. 20:22
  • Fools give full vent to their rage, but the wise bring calm in the end. 29:11

2. Your mouth

  • To answer before listening— that is folly and shame. 18:13
  • Those who guard their lips preserve their lives, but those who speak rashly will come to ruin. 13:3
  • Even fools are thought wise if they keep silent, and discerning if they hold their tongues. 17:28
  • Do you see someone who speaks in haste? There is more hope for a fool than for them. 29:20
  • Whoever conceals hatred with lying lips and spreads slander is a fool. 10:18
  • With their mouths the godless destroy their neighbors, but through knowledge the righteous escape. 11:9
  • A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. 15:1
  • Sin is not ended by multiplying words, but the prudent hold their tongues. 10:19
  • The lips of the righteous know what finds favor, but the mouth of the wicked only what is perverse. 10:31
  • Evildoers are trapped by their sinful talk, and so the innocent escape trouble. From the fruit of their lips people are filled with good things, and the work of their hands brings them reward. 12:13-14
  • “If you play the fool and exalt yourself, or if you plan evil, clap your hand over your mouth! 30:32

3. Pursuit of money

  • Those who trust in their riches will fall, but the righteous will thrive like a green leaf. 11:28
  • Do not wear yourself out to get rich; do not trust your own cleverness. Cast but a glance at riches, and they are gone, for they will surely sprout wings and fly off to the sky like an eagle. 23:4-5
  • The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is slave to the lender. Proverbs 22:7
  • “Two things I ask of you, Lord; do not refuse me before I die: Keep falsehood and lies far from me; give me neither poverty nor riches, but give me only my daily bread. Otherwise, I may have too much and disown you and say, ‘Who is the Lord? Or I may become poor and steal, and so dishonor the name of my God. Proverbs 30:7-9

4. Laziness

  • Sluggards do not plow in season; so at harvest time they look but find nothing. 20:4
  • The plans of the diligent lead to profit as surely as haste leads to poverty. 21:5
  • I went past the field of a sluggard, past the vineyard of someone who has no sense; thorns had come up everywhere, the ground was covered with weeds, and the stone wall was in ruins. I applied my heart to what I observed and learned a lesson from what I saw: A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest— and poverty will come on you like a thief and scarcity like an armed man. 24:30-34
  • The sluggard says, “There’s a lion outside! I’ll be killed in the public square!” 22:13
  • Do you see someone skilled in their work? They will serve before kings;they will not serve before officials of low rank. 22:29
  • All hard work brings a profit, but mere talk leads only to poverty. 14:23
  • Those who work their land will have abundant food, but those who chase fantasies have no sense. 12:11

5. Friends

  • The righteous choose their friends carefully, but the way of the wicked leads them astray. 12:26
  • Walk with the wise and become wise, for a companion of fools suffers harm. 13:20
  • Stay away from a fool, for you will not find knowledge on their lips. 14:7
  • Mockers resent correction, so they avoid the wise. 15:12
  • Do not make friends with a hot-tempered person, do not associate with one easily angered, or you may learn their ways and get yourself ensnared. 22:24-25
  • A gossip betrays a confidence; so avoid anyone who talks too much. 20:19
  • Do not speak to fools, for they will scorn your prudent words. 23:9

6. Ignoring God’s Sovereignty

  • All a person’s ways seem pure to them, but motives are weighed by the Lord. 16:2
  • In their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps.16:9
  • The Righteous One  takes note of the house of the wicked and brings the wicked to ruin. 21:5
  • There is no wisdom, no insight, no plan that can succeed against the Lord. Proverbs 21:30
  • The horse is made ready for the day of battle, but victory rests with the Lord. 21:30 -31
  • The crucible for silver and the furnace for gold, but the Lord tests the heart. 17:3
  • The eyes of the Lord keep watch over knowledge, but he frustrates the words of the unfaithful. 22:12


About The Author

Grant Agler

Teaching Pastor/Communications Champion Central

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Grant is our resident farmboy. He grew up in the cornfields of northwest Nebraska. He spent his early days living far from God. As Grant says, "I gave God the middle finger and didn't really care about faith at all." As a young man, he became convinced that God was real. He gave his life to Jesus and experienced God's amazing grace that previously made no sense to him. After experiencing that grace, Grant felt God calling him to teach the message of the gospel. Over the past 20 years, he has been preaching and teaching. Grant, his wife, Bethany, and their four children moved to Michigan in 2011, and he joined the 2|42 team in 2019. Grant is always good for a laugh, but more importantly, he explains biblical concepts in ways anyone can understand.
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