In Proverbs 7, a father shares a story with his son. It’s a simple story designed to warn a young man that you don’t have to go looking for trouble in order to find it and, that 20 minutes of self-indulgence with an easy idol can cost you your life.
For at the window of my house I have looked out through my lattice, and I have seen among the simple, I have perceived among the youths, a young man lacking sense, passing along the street near her corner… (Proverbs 7:6-8)
A young man without a purpose will soon be used for somebody else’s purposes. This guy doesn’t appear to be looking for trouble, but she is.
I have offered my peace offerings, and today I have paid my vows; so now I have come out to meet you, to seek you eagerly, and I have found you. (Proverbs 7:14-15)
The peace or fellowship offerings differed from other Old Testament sacrifices in that you gave to God a small portion, but you got to eat most of it with those around you. It was a joyful feast marked by thanksgiving for God’s tender mercies.
So, this woman, whose husband is out of town, heads out into the streets, dressed as a harlot and looking to have some young fool over for a night of good food, wine, and a little adultery. He’s a bit of a dunce, but a dunce with all of your ordinary sinful appetites. If you have ever seen the Nicole Kidman movie, “To Die For”, you know the type.
She, like sin, appeals to all of your basic senses. A luxurious bed, an intoxicating scent, a good feed, smooth words and bosoms till Tuesday.
And he falls for the lot, not knowing that it will cost him his life.
All at once he follows her, as an ox goes to the slaughter, or as a stag is caught fast till an arrow pierces its liver; as a bird rushes into a snare… (Proverbs 7:22-23)
The adulteress women in scripture is a metaphor for all kinds of idolatry and the end of always the same: Misery.
Here, Solomon does not offer a remedy but a preventative (Proverbs 7:1-5). Sometimes, you can’t avoid going down the street where she lives. But you can take measures to guard your heart and those measures are found in God’s Word.
Store that word in your heart, let it dictate what your hands do next. Don’t stick around to banter with serpents. Get the heck out of there.
The apostle Paul, who can often be found borrowing from Solomon (Proverbs 4:7; 24:13; 25:21–22) put it as simply as he could, “flee youthful lusts” (2 Timothy 2:22).
We fall for wily speech and smooth words every day because we lust. We are drawn to idols of destruction because they kick out passions into gear and our passions feel good.
The heart of wisdom is the heart that’s being trained to see past the pretty face of whatever idol is currently persuading you, to the dirty sheets, foul smell, guilt, shame and slow decay that awaits your soul on the other side of sin.
Wisdom is learning how to say No! with your own two feet.
Leave a Reply