The Book of Proverbs - Chapter 5 - Personal Bible Study - The Forbidden Woman

If you missed Chapter 4 Click Here

In the previous chapters, we learn that living wisely is about living honestly, having faith and loving God, avoiding situations where we can get ourselves into trouble, avoiding evil, and doing the right thing with love and generosity.  

Coming into chapter 5, we are going to read about the seductive adulteress.  She is one of the many temptations that we men will likely face in our lives.   
1 My son, pay attention to my wisdom; incline your ear to my insight,
2 that you may maintain discretion and your lips may preserve knowledge.
And here it comes, the most direct piece of wisdom we are getting yet.
3 Though the lips of the forbidden woman drip honey and her speech is smoother than oil,
4 in the end she is bitter as wormwood, sharp as a double-edged sword.
Forbidden woman = married woman.

She looks good, she may seem sweet when she's hitting on you.  You will have your moment of pleasure.  But she is cheating on her husband and therefore you are both committing an immoral act.
5 Her feet go down to death; her steps lead straight to Sheol.
Sheol = in ancient Hebrew theology, the dwelling place of the dead

In ancient Israel, she would be stoned to death if caught committing adultery.   
6 She does not consider the path of life; she does not know that her ways are unstable.
She acts without considering the consequences.  She thinks she can get away with it.  
7 So now, my sons, listen to me, and do not turn aside from the words of my mouth.
8 Keep your path far from her; do not go near the door of her house,
9 lest you concede your vigor to others, and your years to one who is cruel;
10 lest strangers feast on your wealth, and your labors enrich the house of a foreigner.
In the earlier chapters we learned that doing evil has consequences.  Your actions will eventually come back to haunt you.  Having sex with another man's wife is an evil act.  In ancient Isreal, the consequences for it were severe.  It was a capital offense.  

If you take that witch belongs to another man, that which belongs to you will be taken from you.  

Kind of sounds like "Child Support."  if we look at it in modern terms.  
11 At the end of your life you will groan when your flesh and your body are spent,
12 and you will say, “How I hated discipline, and my heart despised reproof!
13 I did not listen to the voice of my teachers or incline my ear to my mentors.
14 I am on the brink of utter ruin in the midst of the whole assembly.”
Then you will sit there wishing you had made better choices.  You will regret that one moment of pleasure which destroyed your life.  And you knew better too.  Imagine that.
15 Drink water from your own cistern, and running water from your own well.
16 Why should your springs flow in the streets, your streams of water in the public squares?
17 Let them be yours alone, never to be shared with strangers.
Get your own wife, love and stay loyal to her.
18 May your fountain be blessed, and may you rejoice in the wife of your youth:
19 A loving doe, a graceful fawn—  may her breasts satisfy you always; may you be captivated by her love forever.
A good wife is a blessing to a man.  If you stay faithful to your own wife, then you will be a blessing to her.  
20 Why be captivated, my son, by an adulteress, or embrace the bosom of a stranger?
Nothing good will come out of it.
21 For a man’s ways are before the eyes of the LORD, and the LORD examines all his paths.
God knows everything you do.  
22 The iniquities of a wicked man entrap him; the cords of his sin entangle him.
23 He dies for lack of discipline, led astray by his own great folly.
You get tangled up in your own messes.  Stay faithful and true to your own wife.  Stay on the path of righteousness.  Avoid sinful behavior.

Review of the first 5 chapters.

I am working on this Book of Proverbs project for me.  I took interest in this book and want to understand it better.  I am posting it to my blog, because if I can share my own understanding and that helps somebody get closer to God, then great.  

I have worked my way through the first 5 chapters.   And before going on to Chapter 6, I think it's time for a quick review.  

Wisdom is about living wisely, in righteousness, justice and equity.  We learn wisdom starting from our parents, who always want what's best for us.  We should avoid getting involved with sinners or criminals who rob and kill others for their own gain but end up paying the price later on down the road.  Those who do get involved will regret their poor choices, because they knew better, they learned right from wrong.  When they get caught, they will seek God's mercy, but they will pay the price for their sins.

Wisdom comes from God.  Those who follow the commandments are wise and God will protect them.  God helps us through our trials and help us to see the good things.  If you live wisely, you will be able to keep safe from the evil man, and those who are taking the wrong path.  It will keep you safe from the forbidden woman (adulteress), and free of the consequences of doing evil.  Those who do evil will pay the price for their evil, but the righteous will be rewarded for their righteousness.

Those who keep God's commandments will live a longer and more peaceful life.  God favors those who do good.  If you trust in God, he will help you to keep your path straight.  God helps you heal and refresh.  If you honor God with your firstfruits, he will multiply what you have.  Don't reject God's discipline because he disciplines in order to keep you on the straight and narrow path.  The man who finds wisdom is blessed.  Wisdom is better than gold and other riches.  Her ways are pleasant and peaceful.  Those who seek and grasp wisdom are blessed, for God created the world with wisdom.  He gave us what we need.  Those who live wisely will live peacefully, they will stay on the straight and narrow path, they will not be watching their backs.  They don't make enemies who will seek revenge or flaunt that which others would want to take away for their own gain.  Don't fear the ruin that ultimately comes to the wicked man, God will keep safe the good.  Be gracious and helpful.  If you can help somebody, do.  Don't devise evil against your neighbor.  Don't falsely accuse them.  Don't envy an evil man.  God walks with those who do good.  Those who do evil will be held up to shame.

Follow God's commandments, and you will live.  Seek wisdom and understanding.  Do not forsake wisdom and she will preserve and protect you.  Seek wisdom and understanding in everything you do.  Wisdom will honor and guard you.  Wisdom will set a garland of grace upon your head.  You will live a longer, happier life.  Do not walk on the path of evil doers.  For they do not walk in peace, but always have to watch their backs.  The path of the righteous is  bright.  The path of the evil is dark and the evil man will fall and stumble.    

Avoid the seductive adulteress.  She is one of the temptations that will cause us to fall.   She may seem sweet and it would be fun to have that moment of pleasure, but deep down she is evil and her ways are unstable.  Trouble will follow.  Avoid her, don't seek her out or engage with her or you will pay the price.    Stay true to your own wife.  Hove and honor her and she will love and honor you.  There are consequence if you are caught.  You will get caught up in your own lies and deception.  


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