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SIH’s Think On These Things: Proverbs 14:1-4

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SIH TOTT ICONHe layeth up sound wisdom for the righteous (Prov 2:7)

The Pursuit Of The Wise: Strengthening The Family: Proverbs 14:1-4

1) Every wise woman buildeth her house: but the foolish plucketh it down with her hands.
2) He that walketh in his uprightness feareth the LORD: but [he that is] perverse in his ways despiseth him.
3) In the mouth of the foolish [is] a rod of pride: but the lips of the wise shall preserve them.
4) Where no oxen [are], the crib [is] clean: but much increase [is] by the strength of the ox.

In this chapter of Proverbs, the Lord inspires Solomon to give to us a list of many different pursuits of those who are wise in the Word…

In this text, we find that wise people will seek to spiritually strengthen their family…

1) Every wise woman buildeth her house: but the foolish plucketh it down with her hands.
The Bible recognizes the woman as holding the greatest amount of direct control and influence over those that are in her family.  Although the man is said to hold the position absolute authority, the woman’s role in the family should never be minimized.  Here, we find that…
1.  a wise woman will spiritually and physically establish, strengthen and support her children.  She does this by establishing Godly guidelines, instituting Godly practices and instructing through her words and her examples.
2.  a woman who lacks wisdom will root up and weaken her family by allowing Godliness to become the lifestyle of the family members.

It is important to recognize, that although the woman, due to her elevated role in rearing children, is discussed in this proverb… these basic principles also apply to the man as well.

Through wisdom is an house builded; and by understanding it is established:  And by knowledge shall the chambers be filled with all precious and pleasant riches.”   (Proverbs 24:3-4)

2) He that walketh in his uprightness feareth the LORD: but [he that is] perverse in his ways despiseth him.
1.  The person whose lifestyle is lived in alignment with the desires of the Lord declares His respect and fear of the Lord.
2.  The person whose lifestyle displays a twisting and perverting of the desires of the Lord reveals his distain, dislike and disrespect for the Lord and His desires.

Our lifestyles are living examples of how our family should respect the Lord and His Word.  By living lives of obedience, we are teaching our children to respect the Lord and His desires… by living lives of disobedience, we are teaching disrespect for our Lord.

Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this [is] the whole [duty] of man.”   (Ecclesiastes 12:13)

For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,  Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,”   (2 Timothy 3:2-3)


3) In the mouth of the foolish [is] a rod of pride: but the lips of the wise shall preserve them.
1.  The speech of the foolish are harmful to others because they are motivated by pride. They can harm the innocent like a rod used to drive away the opposition in times of war.
2.  The speech of those who are wise are spoken to build up, correct, and restore to obedience to the desires of the Lord.  Because of this, their speech leads to the physical and spiritual protection of the listeners.

One of the great roles of parenting is to guide the children through the use of wise speech.  By teaching our children the truths of God’s Word and the application of it, the parent is equipping the child to live a lifestyle of peace, security and obedience to God.

My soul [is] among lions: [and] I lie [even among] them that are set on fire, [even] the sons of men, whose teeth [are] spears and arrows, and their tongue a sharp sword.”   (Psalms 57:4)

And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.”   (Revelation 12:11)


4) Where no oxen [are], the crib [is] clean: but much increase [is] by the strength of the ox.
1.  Where there are no oxen, there is no need to feed nor clean up after them.  By owning no oxen, it eliminates work and effort for the owner…. However….
2.  The stronger the ox, the more work can be accomplished in the field.  There can be no food grown and no profit made without the ox.

Although no harvest is immediately gotten, the willingness to labor now by caring for the ox and laboring in the field…. will lead to reaping a harvest after months have passed.

Here, we have a basic principle that should be shared with our children.  The need of lawful labor for sppuly our needs and be profitable in life.  Like those who choose to not own an ox, they are choosing current ease and laziness over supplying future needs through honest labor now.

For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat.  For we hear that there are some which walk among you disorderly, working not at all, but are busybodies.  Now them that are such we command and exhort by our Lord Jesus Christ, that with quietness they work, and eat their own bread.”   (2 Thessalonians 3:10-12)


Those who are wise, will seek to spiritually equip and strengthen their family.  This would include:
1.  by establishing Godly guidelines, instituting Godly practices and instructing through her words and her examples.
2.  lifestyles that are living examples of how our family should respect the Lord and His Word.
3.  verbally teaching our children the truths of God’s Word and the application of it
4.  teaching the need of lawful labor for the supply physical needs and to be industrious in life.

By God’s grace, let us all study these proverbs diligently, giving them the value that they deserve.

May the Lord bless us as we receive this sound wisdom and then “Think On These Things”.

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  1. Terry says:

    thank you Rob

  2. pj54 says:

    I loved this post. While I am not an authority on raising children “in or out” of the church, I must say the best way to teach children to love, and revere God is by example. As much as I loved my mom, she was a “do as I say, and NOT as I DO kind of person. She made sure I got up and went to Sunday School every Sunday morning and Wednesday night church, yet she never stepped inside of one as far as I know. Her mother was a God-fearing woman, so I don’t know if she went to church growing up or not. Anyway, my point for the parents out there is, be a positive role in your children’s lives. Don’t just send them to church to learn. Let them see God shining through you and go to church with them. Children will not be strengthened spiritually as long as they see their parents not practicing what they preach.

    Rob, Thank you for pointing out our commonalities. Sometimes I forget that not all people are the same. When I speak about doctrinal differences, it is because so many times I may be criticized because I am so open about what I believe. Not long ago, our town had a community service, and when I said “Amen” in agreement with something the speaker said, and raised my hands to praise the Lord, you would have thought I committed a sin according to the way people looked at me.

    What’s funny is when we were in Arizona, I attended the Base Chapel for services. Of course there were many different denominations which attended, but after service one day, the Chaplain came over and thanked me for praising God so openly. I told him “I didn’t need thanks, that I don’t believe in ‘quenching the spirit’ no matter what kind of service I was attending. I don’t lift my hands or dance for the Lord to suit other people, I do it because God tells us to do so, and I want to please Him.

    Anyway, your reminder means a lot to me. I can’t help but feel that you must have a “deep, intimate relationship with God”. I say this because your lessons lead me to believe that you feel there is more to being saved than just “using the words”, that you believe that being saved is more than that. We must live for God and develop a special, intimate friendship with Him where we talk to Him and include Him in every aspect of our lives. SO MANY PREACHERS don’t have that. They seem to just go through the motions, and feel like they are “soul winners” as long as the person says “I believe that Christ is my Savior” but then the person goes no further. Wow! I didn’t realize I was going on so! Sorry about that! Happy Memmorial Day. Were you ever in the service? If so, thank you for that. Not to lessen the fact that you are in the “Army of God” and I thank you for that as well. I feel that everytime we communicate, or I read your post, you give me ammunition against the fiery darts of Satan. God Bless You and Yours,


    • Rob Barkman says:

      Thanks for sharing your experiences PJ. They are a blessing. I also do not have any children, but I would always tell the members of my church that I did not need to have children to be able to understand God’s Word! Over the years, as I have watched families in my church raise their children I have learned a lot through their successes and failures. I am sure you have found the same to be true with you.

      No I wasn’t in the service but my father-in-law was. I have a great amount of respect for him and all he has done for our country.

      Lord bless you PJ. Thanks again for your kind words and spiritual support for SIH. Lord bless you and your hubby, my friend.

  3. Debbie says:

    This really blessed me tonight, Pastor Rob. I am asking God for another little job that Aub and I could do. We have two things we do now, and with her doing better seizure wise, I’m thinking maybe we could add one more! Your study showed me why that is important, to do what we can do, work wise. God bless you!

    • Rob Barkman says:

      Hi Debbie,

      I’m really thankful the seizures are doing some better. What a blessing! My prayers will be with you guys to find another job for you to do. So glad the posting was an encouragement as well. May the Lord bless you both. Thanks for the wonderful example you are setting for all of us Debbie.

  4. SLIMJIM says:

    Thank you for this devotional

  5. Shofar says:

    Hi Pastor Rob, thank you for this teaching. From my experience and observations it is a wise woman who has a good relationship with her husband and treats him with respect that does the most to strengthen a family. Children learn more from what they see and hear going on in their households when their parents live out their faith more than they talk about it. Do you have a teaching on husband-wife relationships?

    • Rob Barkman says:

      Thank you for the very kind words. I agree with all you have said.

      About the husband/wife relationships…. I do have much on the subject. I normally preach it as a part of my series on the family. It was one of the choices I gave to the readers of SIH blog on my poll for next years blog postings. It was one of the LEAST popular subjects according to the poll.

      I see a great need to present the information on the family, but I’ll try to present it in an individual lesson format instead of a series format. Hopefully later this year…. if it be the Lord’s will.

      Lord bless you my friend.

      • Shofar says:

        Thank you for your reply and comments. Sometimes teachings that are not popular are the most needed and beneficial, especially those about relationships built upon respect and responsibility in line with Bible principles. In the PI and many churches in America there seems to be a lack of emphasis on righteous and holy living. Preachers don’t speak about sin and repentance, fornication and adultery, shacking up and premarital sex, alternative life styles contrary to Bible teachings, etc. The Christian adult role model in a family may be difficult to address when there has been marriage and divorce; many children may have more than 1 father and 1 mother, live with blended families, or with a single parent, etc. All families, however they are comprised, should find support in the church. Through the teaching of God’s Word they can experience the power of God in their lives to bring healing, peace, joy and salvation to their families. What a challenge! ~Liz

        • Rob Barkman says:


          you are so right in everything you have said. The Lord and His Word are such a wonderful, life changing blessing for us all! Thanks for your comments. Lord bless you.

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