The Word of God is the law, the lamp, the source of all things that proceed out of it. Just as we learn the fundamentals of mathematics and then apply all kinds of equations out of that foundation, so Bible doctrine is the foundation of Gods wisdom.
The lamp is the container, the vessel which holds Gods wisdom, and that is of course Bible doctrine which is written for us from Genesis to Revelation. But words on the page are of no use unless they are transferred to ones soul, and from there understood, and from there applied to ones life on a daily basis. This completes the cycle of learning and spiritual growth in the life. We first learn, but that is not enough. We have to understand, to comprehend what it is that we learned. But that too is not enough. We next need to apply what we learn, and that completes the cycle of learning and continues the process of learning because we learn even more, understand even more, and apply even more, and do it all over again, and again throughout our life.
Spiritual growth is a never ending cycle of learning and growth. In math we learn 2+2, then we advance to equations, or making change at the grocery store, then speed and time and motion concepts, then thrust and trajectories. We eventually get a rocket to the moon, and we continue to learn and develop stealth technologies, we continue to learn and develop more things. And the learning and applications continue on and on to other applications, like faster computer CPU’s, or better toasters, or more efficient automobiles. Hummm!, I wonder if we can get more Playstation 2’s on the store shelf before Christmas??? Certainly a better voting machine would help – a – in some parts of the country, that is. Please, no more Florida jokes. My computer might have a seizure.
So we continue to learn from a foundation of Bible doctrine, which sheds light, our ability to see things as they should be seen. So that we can discern between right and wrong, between truth and false. And when we make mistakes we get reproofs to keep us on a straight course. Reproofs are course corrections, if you will.
And that, as verse 23 states, is the way of life.
What is the way of life? Learning and continuing to learn. Learning from our mistakes, or realizing that we are not learning from our mistakes, and that we should rethink whatever it is that we are doing so we can learn and eventually understand life, understand our own thoughts, our frustrations and why we are frustrated, or impatient, or anxious, or inflexible. We learn to be tolerant of others because they have the right to choose. God gave us all that right, whether we make the right decisions or not. Sometimes learning comes after a series of wrong decisions, and we have to come to that knowledge on our own. Having someone harping constantly at you – you’re wrong, you’re wrong generally has negative consequences. You become defensive and close down your willingness to learn. But if we are allowed to learn without being the designated victim and lesson object for all to see, then we can begin to see and understand our actions, their consequences, and the alternatives available to us for better decisions and a better life.
God handles all reproof in our lives. He does it in many ways. He gives us parents, teachers, bosses, traffic laws, and occasional storm. The list continues. Sometimes these things are wrong, but they build character in us, and prepare us for something better. Something that God will make use of in His good time.
We should learn what the two opinions in life are. We should learn what sin is. We should learn the difference between human good and divine good. We should learn what fellowship is and how or spiritual status in life really effects our life and ability to grow.
The Israelites left Egypt extremely happy victors, only to find themselves facing the sea and the Egyptians advancing against them. They were trapped. But were they. We are in a sense trapped in this life. The world is the sea from which we have no avenue out. Sin and human opinion constantly bombard us from all sides. Sure it is ok to skip a ‘few’ Bible lessons. Sure it is ok to tell a little lie, to cheat just a little, to make the rules change so we can win, but just for now, because we know that it is right. At least for us. It is easy to give in to the onslaught against us, as some probably wanted to give in to the Egyptians, when there was no apparent escape, and death was obviously certain.
Likewise God places us in a hopeless situation and waits to see if we will learn from His teaching, or if we will give up. Proverbs 6 sheds light on sin and its repercussions. We can flirt with the stranger, our sin nature. We can be lazy about our Bible study as the sluggard is lazy in life with respect to responsibility. We can be disgusting as the sneaky deceitful person is in their ‘game playing’ with others. We can give in to our thought deficiencies, our vocal comments, and even our actions, and kill and maim with deeds when our words and thoughts are not enough.
We can realize that there is a price to pay for this selfish approach to life, and that price could very well be tremendous violence to our own self far exceeding that which we intended for others, or because we decided to ignore the truth.
We can realize that life is more than just an 8 to 5 daily job, that we were not placed here on earth to advance the ‘dignity’ of mankind. But that we were placed here to resolve a greater spiritual conflict, the angelic conflict, and that one day that conflict will end. So will human history. Then we will face eternity with no way to undo our final decisions in life as we made them in our short little lives.
A true investor, one who invests his capital resources for profit, looks to the future for short term gain as well as long term wealth and stability. The spiritual life is the basis and the principle of investment. Christ taught this in His parables. We were given time, doctrine and volition. These are the three greatest capital assets in existence. So what will you do with your capital? The lamp, the light, and the reproof.
Will we learn and advance in our spiritual life, and continue to learn and advance throughout our life? Or will we choose to ignore God and pursue our own course in the fog, thinking we know what we are doing, but really not having the slightest clue??
All scripture is God breathed, and profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness. That the man of God might be mature, rightly dividing (discerning) the word of truth.