Saturday’s Military Devotional – Instructed

20 Hear counsel, and receive instruction, that thou mayest be wise in thy latter end.
21 There are many devices in a man's heart; nevertheless the counsel of the Lord, that shall stand. Proverbs 19:20-21

AMP and RVR 1960


CONTEXT: 

If you can remember back to boot camp you have to remember getting off the bus and being SCREAMED at by some Drill Sergeant barking out instructions so fast you had no clue what they said or what to do. 

There was a method and reason to their madness that I did not understand until I had nearly finished Basic Training.  Basically we need to react under pressure under stress of combat and since shooting recruits would not be advisable (or legal 🙂 ) screaming like banshees is the next best thing. In order to insure a soldier does no harm to themselves or others one must learn to act in differing situations of stress. 

Here in our text the preceding v.19 has the same implication, an unwise man (here one who can not control his emotions) must learn the consequences of those actions otherwise he will repeat the mistake and cause himself and or others harm.  


BREAKDOWN:

20 Hear counsel, and receive instruction, that thou mayest be wise in thy latter end. –  NO ONE, likes to be yelled at, told they are wrong, continually corrected.  Yet the bible is clear, God loves to “correct” that is “Instruct” his chosen and as Proverbs 12:1 says those who oppose God’s loving instruction are “Stupid.”

Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary on the Bible comments on this Those that would be wise in their latter end, must be taught and ruled when young.

21 There are many devices in a man’s heart; nevertheless the counsel of the Lord, that shall stand. –  What is it man longs for; wealth, fame, power?  All these things are the focus of a corrupt heart. Man can plan, scheme and conive all he wishes but to what end? God will always have the final say Psalm 33:10.  


APPLICATION: 

Just as recruits must be taught the ways of soldiering so too those who enter into God’s Army need learn His ways in order to fight the good fight. We cannot be afraid of being continual instruction, being rebuked and getting wise counsel. 

The Book of Psalms 1:1-6 begins with such an exhortation:

Blessed is the man[a]
    who walks not in the counsel of the wicked,
nor stands in the way of sinners,
    nor sits in the seat of scoffers;
but his delight is in the law[b] of the Lord,
    and on his law he meditates day and night. 


Today’s Questions:

 

Say What?

Observation: What did I read? What struck you as most meaningful?

So What?

Interpretation: What does it mean? Overall and the most meaningful? Did it change your view on INSTRUCTION

Now What?

Application: How does it apply to me?

Then What?

Implementation: What do I do? How can I start living it out today?

Stupid Boy?

20 Hear counsel, and receive instruction, that thou mayest be wise in thy latter end. 21 There are many devices in a man's heart; nevertheless the counsel of the Lord, that shall stand. Proverbs 19:20-21

Escucha el consejo, y recibe la corrección, Para que seas sabio en tu vejez. 21 Muchos pensamientos hay en el corazón del hombre; Mas el consejo de Jehová permanecerá. (RVR 1960)

I doubt very much that anyone get up in the morning and decides “I am going to act stupid today” yet we all seem to have days where that occurs. I remember back in 2007-2008 we were having worship team practice (okay, I am so glad I could make y’all laugh today) and somehow we got on the subject of Keith Urban’s song Stupid Boy  I made the comment that I had much practice in that subject and I could prove it by my hair loss from having hit the side of my forehead so often saying “Stupid Boy”. 

While Keith Urban’s song is about a guy trying to corral a gal and crush her dreams, most of our daily misguided (Stupid) actions can be attributed to our lack of understanding of God’s intent for our daily lives. We strike out on our own, ignore the counsel, and instruction that God provides so that thou {we} mayest be wise. 

Look at v.21 There are many devices in a man’s heart; the ESV puts it Many are the plans in the mind of a man. I am not telling you anything new here, man can devise the wildest and most unfruitful ideas in his own mind and heart, apart from wise counsel and instruction of God. Man will reason out anything that seems Luke 5:22 to fit their own agenda. Jesus made it clear Mark 7:20-23 man in his natural state has nothing but evil in his heart and mind. If we, those who claim to follow Christ,  fail to hold daily to the Word of God (counsel, and  instruction) we can easily slide back into that nature. 

If you want to grow strong(er) in the Faith and avoid the Stupids of Life, you must be in the Word. I do not mean just a cursory review of it or listening to preaching without investigating what has been said. NEVER take my word for God’s, never take your Pastor’s or College/Seminary Professor’s. I don’t care how many books he has written or how filled with the Holy Spirit you think they are. It is your responsibility to be wise, to be a Berean because the counsel of the Lord, is unmoving and shall stand forever.