Among my other Bible reading, I read one chapter from the Book of Proverbs each day. I have done this for years, so you would think I would have them memorized by now... uh, that answer would be no! Recently, as I was reading Proverbs 22, I discovered a heading that said "30 Sayings of the Wise." I thought really? There are only a few verses left in this chapter. Then I discovered that these carry over into chapters 23 and 24. You see, by only reading one chapter a day, I had missed that this was a continued thought.
Now I realize that some of you reading this blog already had this one figured out, but for those of you like me, here is a list of the 30 sayings... I think you will discover that we should all strive to live by these. (I am going to paraphrase these, so I encourage you to get in God's word and read them for yourself.)
1. Don't walk on the poor just because they're poor, and don't use your position to crush the weak.
2. Don't hang out with angry people; don't keep company with hotheads.
3. Don't gamble on the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, hocking your house against a lucky chance.
4. Don't move back the boundary lines staked out by your ancestors.
5. Observe people who are good at their work.
6. When you go to dinner with an influential person, mind your manners.
7. Don't wear yourself out trying to get rich; restrain yourself!
8. Don't accept a meal from a tightwad.
9. Don't bother talking sense to fools.
10. Don't cheat orphans out of their property.
11. Give yourselves to disciplined instruction.
12. Don't be afraid to correct your young ones; a spanking won't kill them.
13. Children, if you become wise, your parents will be happy.
14. Don't for a minute envy careless rebels, soak yourself in the fear of God - that's where your future lies.
15. Don't drink too much wine and get drunk, and don't eat too much food and get fat.
16. Listen with respect to the father who raised you, and when your mother grows old, don't neglect her.
17. A loose woman can get you in deep trouble fast.
18. Don't judge wine by its label, or its bouquet, or its full-bodied flavor. Judge it rather by the hangover it leaves you with, the splitting headache, and the queasy stomach.
19. Don't envy bad people; don't even want to be around them.
20. It takes wisdom to build a house, understanding to set it on a firm foundation, and knowledge to furnish its rooms.
21. It is better to be wise than strong; strategic planning is the key to warfare.
22. Wise conversation is way over the head of fools.
23. The person who's always cooking up some evil soon gets a reputation as prince of rogues.
24. If you fall to pieces in a crisis, there wasn't much to you in the first place.
25. Rescue the perishing; don't hesitate to step in and help.
26. Eat honey, it's good for you. Likewise knowledge, and wisdom for your soul.
27. Don't interfere with good people's lives; don't try to get the best of them.
28. Don't laugh when your enemy falls; don't crow over his collapse.
29. Don't bother your head with braggarts or wish you could succeed like the wicked.
30. Fear God, respect your leaders; don't be defiant or mutinous.
Reference: Proverbs 22:16 - 24:22