The theme of pride is apparent to me in Chapter 16. When we go our own way, instead of God’s way and consider it right, not looking to the wisdom of God and others who seek God, this is pride. Let’s look at Proverbs 16 and consider what every verse says. God has something important for us to learn today!
A Heart That Is Proud
When I look at most of these verses that speak of pride, I see something in common. Something bad happens. Verse 5 states that the Lord detests the proud heart and be sure that they will NOT go unpunished! There will be bad consequences! Verse 18, there WILL be a fall and destruction! Bad things WILL happen! There are no two ways about it! Verse 19- It is better to be lowly in spirit(humble) than to share a plunder with the proud! You will go right under along with other people who are proud! Verse 25- There is a way that APPEARS to be right, but in the end, it leads to death. When we consider our way to be right, instead of God’s way, it is NOT going to end well. This is PRIDE!
Verse 1 To humans belong the plans of the heart,
but from the Lord comes the proper answer of the tongue
Verse 2 All a person’s ways seem pure to them,
but motives are weighed by the Lord.
Verse 5 The Lord detests all the proud of heart.
Be sure of this: They will not go unpunished.
Verse 18 Pride goes before destruction,
a haughty spirit before a fall.
Verse 19 Better to be lowly in spirit along with the oppressed
than to share plunder with the proud.
Verse 25 There is a way that appears to be right,
but in the end it leads to death.
I could really write a lot on pride today, as a common theme right along with seeking wisdom and righteousness instead of hating correction. When we are unwilling to receive any wisdom and correction, this is pride! Those who love instruction and correction and willing to listen, are humble(not proud). When our lives and the lives of those we say we love are damaged, it is time that we learn and grow. It is time that we change the pathway that we are on. Consequences are not going to change as long as we continue doing what we have done before. We will get the same result.
The highway of the upright avoids evil;Proverbs 16:17
those who guard their ways preserve their lives.
Did you see the verses above and the consequences that come along with pride? The highway of the upright AVOIDS evil! When we guard the direction that we are going, we preserve, we save our lives! We won’t have the same bad circumstances that happen when we let go of our pride and listen to God and listen to people who love us and want the best for us.
A Heart Of The Wise
The heart of the wise, number 1, gives heed, they listen to instruction and act as a result. Blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord! We are called blessed and God WILL bless us when we do what is right. Our heart’s desire, what we value most, when we have the heart of the wise, is wisdom. When we are wise, our hearts choose wisdom, we are called discerning. We make the right choices. All of the details are laid before us and we see what we should do, then do the right thing instead of the wrong. We honor God and those He gave us to correct and instruct and pass along wisdom.
Prudence and Discernment are very close in definition. It means that someone is cautious. They are careful to decide carefully between what is right and wrong. Prudence, it says in Verse 22, is a fountain of life to the prudent. It gives us LIFE, not punishment. But, foolishness is going to bring punishment to fools. In Verse 3, the hearts of the wise make their mouths prudent. Sometimes, they just stop talking, other times, they just carefully choose their words. Their lips promote instruction.
Whoever gives heed to instruction prospers, and blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord. The wise in heart are called discerning, and gracious words promote instruction. Prudence is a fountain of life to the prudent,Proverbs 16:20-23
but folly brings punishment to fools. The hearts of the wise make their mouths prudent, and their lips promote instruction.