3/10 Reading (Proverbs 20-22; Psalms 90-92)

Proverbs 20: Here’s the ones I find most interesting in this chapter:

3 It is honorable to back off from a fight,
   but fools jump right in.
5 Advice comes from the deep waters of the heart;
   those with understanding can draw it out.
6 Many people will say that they are loyal,
   but who can find a reliable person?
7 The righteous live with integrity;
   happy are their children who come after them.
15 Much gold and many pearls exist,
   but wise speech is the most precious jewel.
19 Gossips reveal secrets;
   don’t associate with those who talk too much.
29 Strength is the glory of young men;
   gray hair is the splendor of old age.

Restraint, understanding, reliable, integrity, communication (wise speech)

Proverbs 21: Here’s the ones I find most interesting in this chapter:

3 Acting with righteousness and justice
   is more valued by the Lord than sacrifice.
5 The plans of the diligent end up in profit,
   but those who hurry end up with loss.
6 Those who gain treasure with lies
   are like a drifting fog, leading to death.
13 Those who close their ears to the cries of the poor
   will themselves call out but receive no answer.
15 Acting justly is a joy to the righteous,
   but dreaded by those who do evil.
21 Those who pursue righteousness and kindness
   will find life, righteousness, and honor.
23 Those who guard their mouths and their tongues
   guard themselves from trouble.
24 Incredibly proud—mockers are their name!
   Their conduct involves excessive pride.
28 A lying witness will perish,
   but one who listens will testify successfully.
29 The wicked person appears brash,
   but the virtuous think about the path ahead.
30 No wisdom, understanding,
   or advice can stand up against the Lord.

Righteousness, diligence, honesty, helping those in need, kindness, restraint, honesty, thoughtful, wisdom

Proverbs 22: Here’s the ones I find most interesting in this chapter:

1 A good reputation is better than much wealth;
   high esteem is better than silver and gold.
9 Happy are generous people,
   because they give some of their food to the poor.
12 The Lord’s eyes protect knowledge,
   but he frustrates the words of the treacherous.
16 Oppressing the poor to get rich
   and giving to the wealthy lead only to poverty.

High esteem, happiness, knowledge, helping those in need

I think when I come back to this reflection I will want to look more closely at the aphorisms I selected for each of chapters attributed to Solomon’s work. I want to spend more time looking at which themes they align with based on what the scholars identified. That will be for another time though as I’m really tired.

Here’s some info from the notes focused on the third part of Proverbs (22:17-24:22):

The third section of the book of Proverbs begins at verse 17 of this chapter. It is called the ‘thirty sayings of the wise.’ This portion of Proverbs parallels in many ways a text from ancient Egypt called “The Instructions of Amenemope.” The compiler of the book of Proverbs may have borrowed material from the Egyptian text. The section speaks to many of the themes addressed in Proverbs 1-22. The reader or hearer is addressed directly in the second person (you). (p. 1039 OT)

The only one that stands out to me from the few in this chapter is the following:

24 Don’t befriend people controlled by anger;
   don’t associate with hot-tempered people;
25     otherwise, you will learn their ways
   and become trapped.

Psalms 90: Some fun bit of information I just learned: Psalm 90 is the start of the Book 4 in the Book of Psalms. Book 4 includes Psalms 90-106. Here’s what I read from the How to Read the Bible Book by Book:

In direct response to the devastation of Jerusalem and the present void in the Davidic dynasty, book 4 begins with the reminder that Yahweh has been Israel’s “dwelling place” throughout all generations. The heart of this collection, therefore, is the series of psalms that celebrate Yahweh’s kingship—over both Israel and all the nations. The book ends with a series of responses to Yahweh’s reign, concluding with two that retell Israel’s story from two different perspectives.

It’s always fun to have access to information like this. Helps put things into context for me.

This psalm is attributed to Moses and it seems like the purpose is to ask God for compassion. The psalmist is saying that the people have experienced God’s wrath for quite some time and they wonder when that time will end.

As I read this Psalm I am reminded yet again that I just don’t understand some of the Psalms. Ugh.

Psalms 91: The point of this psalm is to recognize that accepting God as your savior will lead to your eternal protection. You will forever be safe with God by your side. The psalm ends with God directly addressing the people, making it clear that if you chose to follow him, you will be safe.

Psalms 92: This psalm praises and thanks God for being there for the people.

I just don’t get how I have such a hard time reading the Psalms. The majority of them don’t motivate me at all.

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