Pro. 5:12-14 - "How I hated discipline and my heart despised reproof! I did not listen to the voice of my teachers or incline my ear to my instructors. I am at the brink of utter ruin in the assembled congregation" (ESV).
What a sad documentary of someone's life! These verses in Proverbs 5 come after Solomon warned his son about the dangers of adultery. The conclusion of the warning was this; if the son failed to heed his father's advice, he would begin to suffer the consequences of his folly and realize that his sin didn't begin when he followed the adulteress home, but when he chose to refuse his father's Godly counsel!
There is such a temptation to believe that I can "do it my way", or "go it alone." The truth is that God has blessed most Christians with other saints who have experienced life ahead of them and have wisdom to share both from their successes and failures. Even if we aren't surrounded by such saints, we have the Spirit-guided word that reveals God's wisdom and instruction. The question is, do we seek genuine instruction or simply validation?
Only our responses to life will reveal the answer to that question. In the young man's case, only if he chose to ignore wanton women would he demonstrate he was teachable. On the other hand if he chose to follow them, then his unteachable heart and the consequences of his folly would be publicly revealed to "the assembled congregation."
May we all develop malleable, teachable hearts; hearts that will heed discipline and reproof! May we seek out teachers and instructors to guide and direct us! Let's start with God and his word!
(Originally posted on 4/20/09)