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24 Because I have called, and ye refused; I have stretched out my hand, and no man regarded.
1.) The speaker is Wisdom, personified. (vs. 20)
2.) Wisdom is calling out to everyone who passes by - crying out in the open places where people congregate. (vs.20-21)
3.) Wisdom cries out to the simple ones (inexperienced); to the scorners and to hard hearted fools. (vs.22)
4.) Now wisdom has a sad message for all of the fools - but first she gives them the REASON for her bad news…
Reasons for the bad news…
a.) Wisdom called to them, but they refused. (call = to summon, invite, call for)
· Refused: an intense form of refusal…
· It was not that the message slipped their mind. This was an open, conscious refusal to respond. “In your face - I will not” kind of refusal!
· This was not a matter of ignorance. It was open rebellion and refusal to do what was right.
· Wisdom called - they heard - they refused to heed the call!
b.) Wisdom stretched out her hand = but no one regarded.
· Stretch out one’s hand = offer help; assistance; guidance; to rescue…
· Regarded = pay attention; give attention; take heed…
· NO one! Not one of these simple ones or scorners or fools paid any attention to the help offered by Wisdom!
· It must take a lot of pride to refuse this kind of hand… especially when you are drowning and are too proud to grab hold of the hand that is stretched out to rescue you! (I’d rather do it myself!)
· Wisdom is crying out so everyone can hear. Wisdom is holding out her hand so EVERYONE has the help they need - but NO ONE is paying any attention.
25 But ye have set at nought all my counsel, and would none of my reproof:
More Reasons for the bad news…
1.) Wisdom offered counsel. (counsel = advice, purpose)
a.) The fools “set at nought” all the counsel offered.
b.) Set at naught = to let go, let loose, ignore, let alone.
c.) The fools heard it - they had this wisdom at their fingertips, but they let go of it… they ignored it… they threw it all away.
d.) How many people do we know like this?!?!?
e.) Proverbs 19:20 - Hear counsel, and receive instruction, that thou mayest be wise in thy latter end.
· It is good in the long run to take heed to wise counsel!
· God knows that. God is pleading with men to listen to Him… to His word… to His wisdom…
f.) Prov. 12:15 - The way of the fool is right in his own eyes… but the one who takes heed to counsel is wise!
· The sad truth is, however, that very few take heed to wise counsel!
· Most men are too proud to listen to others. They know everything - and therefore you can’t tell them anything!
g.) Lady wisdom laments because she offers sound counsel, but the people set it at naught… they heard it; had it; but let it go!
· Wisdom is frustrated & discouraged !
2.) Lady wisdom also offered reproof (vs.25c)
a.) Reproof = rebuke, correction, punishment, chastisement.
b.) Would = to be willing; They did not WANT to be reproved!
c.) This is the kind of attitude that says, “Who are you to tell me what to do? Who do you think you are? I don’t need to be corrected!”
d.) Here it states that the fools did not want reproof. In 1:30, it states that they actually DESPISED reproof!
e.) Prov. 10:17 - He that refuseth reproof erreth.
· It is a serious error to reject counsel and refuse to be corrected!
· I have seen this countless times. Even believers hate to be corrected and reproved.
· Pastors & elders have to approach believers about sin or problems in their lives - and that takes place when the flesh is ruling. When the flesh is ruling, people hate reproof… and the one who approaches them often times gets blasted!
3.) This pictures the heart of God toward sinners.
· Matt. 23:37 - “I would… but ye would not!”
· Rom. 10:21 - “All day long have I stretched out my hands unto a disobedient and gainsaying people…”
· God is longsuffering… but even his longsuffering comes to an end!
· Don’t play games with God!
26 I also will laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your fear cometh;
1.) This is not God laughing at the fool’s calamity. This is wisdom personified.
2.) BUT - it is GOD’s wisdom that is laughing!
a.) This is not a giddy or hilarious kind of laughter; Nor is it a sadistic or vindictive kind of laughter. Rather, it is a sad kind of laughter!
b.) Have you ever seen those videos of robberies in which the robbers do the stupidest things and get caught? It is sad, but laughable!
c.) “How could you be so stupid” kind of laughter - such as when you told your son to stay away from the puddle, and two seconds later, he is laying face first in the puddle - soaking wet! You want to cry, but you might as well laugh! (Comedy of errors!)
d.) The main point of this figurative language (God’s wisdom laughing) is to demonstrate how foolish - stupid - ludicrous it is to defy God’s Wisdom! (like a flea shaking his fist at God!)
· Psa. 2:1-4 - God laughs --- like a parent might laugh under his/her breath when a child attempts to pull a fast one on you - like when your son comes in and says “I didn’t touch the paint” - and he is covered with red paint! You laugh at their stupidity!
e.) It is not so much that God is actually laughing. But to the scorner - the fool who openly rejects this wisdom - Wisdom seems to get the last laugh! - a kind of poetic justice!
27 When your fear cometh as desolation, and your destruction cometh as a whirlwind; when distress and anguish cometh upon you.
1.) Here Solomon describes the life of the one who rejects counsel and wisdom.
2.) Their life is full of desolation & destruction - like a whirlwind - one storm after the next!
3.) It is a life full of fear, distress, and anguish!
4.) There is no escaping it. You reap what you sow. This is the point of the remainder of the chapter!
5.) The man who does not want to take heed to God’s Wisdom should expect a life of fear, distress, and anguish!
6.) He will be running about putting out one fire after another - running from one storm of life to the next… he will wear himself out… spin his wheels in the mud and get nowhere.
7.) I know way to many people in this category - sadly, many Christian people too!
a.) Not every believer follows the way of wisdom. Many believers make some very foolish choices…
b.) Many believers do their own thing - and refuse all counsel - reject reproof - and are determined to go their own way and do their own thing.
c.) AND they pay for it! They are not experiencing the rest God’s promises His people. Instead, they are full of anxiety - fear - distress - stress!
d.) Too many believers do not do things RIGHT. (I know I shouldn’t do this BUT… and on with 1001 excuses…)
e.) It is sad to watch so many lives bent on destruction - right before your very eyes!
8.) Hence, Solomon is giving his son ( and us!) ample WARNING
a.) When wisdom calls - RESPOND in obedience!
b.) When God’s Word has given you light and you know what is the right thing to do - DO IT!
c.) LISTEN to Lady Wisdom! She is constantly calling to us! (vs.21)
· She calls to us each day as we read God’s Word! Be ye doers!
· She calls to us sometimes in a SS class or Bible lesson…
· She calls to us sometimes through the brethren…
· She calls to us sometimes by means of reproof or rebuke…
· She calls to us sometimes in a still, small voice!
· She calls to us sometimes like the roaring of a lion - wake up!
· She calls to us sometimes by bringing to mind a Bible verse - perhaps while riding to work - or sitting on a lawn chair…
· She calls to us in all kinds of ways. The important thing is our response!
· She calls for obedience! (Prov. 8:10-11) ( or vs. 1-11)
· RECEIVE my instruction!
· Buy the truth and sell it not! (Prov. 23:23)