Devotional Readings

Proverbs 7 – ….write them upon the table of thine heart.

My wife and I are reading through Gary Smalley’s book about changing your heart by memorizing scripture. There is some good use to be gained by his comments, but perhaps there is an even broader application. We see this in Jesus’ great commission, and the Shema Yisrael and First and Greatest Commandment, as well as an observation and exhortation from Proverbs.

Mat 28:18  And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.

Mat 28:19  Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:

Mat 28:20  Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

Deu 6:4  Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD:

Deu 6:5  And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.

Deu 6:6  And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart:

Deu 6:7  And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.

Deu 6:8  And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes.

Deu 6:9  And thou shalt write them upon the posts of thy house, and on thy gates.

Pro 7:1  My son, keep my words, and lay up my commandments with thee.

Pro 7:2  Keep my commandments, and live; and my law as the apple of thine eye.

Pro 7:3  Bind them upon thy fingers, write them upon the table of thine heart.

Pro 7:4  Say unto wisdom, Thou art my sister; and call understanding thy kinswoman:

Pro 7:5  That they may keep thee from the strange woman, from the stranger which flattereth with her words.

Below is the beginning of old John Gill’s commentary on this chapter….I leave it to you to access the whole commentary, but you might observe a bit different interpretation than a superficial reading might give you. It’s interesting to observe this historical viewpoint…..perhaps not just the young son is being addressed.

Proverbs 7


The sum of this chapter is to exhort men to attend to the doctrines and precepts of Wisdom, in order to avoid the adulterous woman; the exhortation to keep them with care, affection, and delight, in order to answer the end, is in Pro 7:1. A story is told, of Solomon’s own knowledge, of a young man ensnared and ruined by a lewd woman; it begins Pro 7:6. The young man is described as foolish, and as throwing himself in the way of temptation, Pro 7:7; the harlot that met him is described by her attire, her subtlety, her voice, her inconstancy, her impudence, and pretensions to piety, Pro 7:10. The arguments she made use of to prevail upon him to go with her are taken partly from the elegance of her bed, the softness of it, and its sweet perfume, and satiety of love to be enjoyed in it, Pro 7:15; and partly from the absence of her husband, who was gone a long journey, and had made provision for it for a certain time, Pro 7:19. By which arguments she prevailed upon him to his utter ruin: which is illustrated by the similes of an ox going to the slaughter, a fool to the stocks, and a bird to the snare, Pro 7:21. And the chapter is concluded with an exhortation to hearken to the words of Wisdom, and to avoid the ways and paths of the harlot, by which many and mighty persons have been ruined; they being the direct road to hell and death, Pro 7:24.

Proverbs 7:1

My son, keep my words,…. Doctrines and instructions; which, as a father to a son, or a master to his scholars, he had delivered; these he would have him observe and attend to;

and lay up my commandments with thee: as a treasure in his heart, to be brought out upon occasion; to be kept as valuable, and made use of as an antidote against and a preservative from sinning; see Psa 119:11. The Septuagint and Arabic versions add, what is not in the Hebrew text,

“son, honour the Lord, and thou shalt be strong;”

the Arabic adds,

“and he shall strengthen thee; and fear none besides him.”

Proverbs 7:2

Keep my commandments and live,…. Not the commandments of the law only, but the commandments of Christ; and even the doctrines of Christ are so called, as faith in him, and love to the saints, 1Jn 3:23; which is the way to live comfortably, peaceably, pleasantly, and honourably;

and my law as the apple of thine eye; the doctrine of Christ, the law of the Lord, that goes out of Zion; which should be as dear to men as the apple of their eye, and as carefully preserved, that the least injury is not done to it; it should be kept inviolate.

Proverbs 7:3

Bind them upon thy fingers,…. Let the above words and doctrines be as ready and familiar as if they were at the fingers’ ends; or let them be always fresh in memory, as a piece of thread is tied about the fingers, to put in mind of anything to be done; or let them be as rings upon the fingers, both memorial and ornamental: or put into practice the things taught and commanded; the fingers being the instruments of action, and especially of doing things nicely and accurately;

write them upon the table of thine heart; that they may be strong in the memory, deep in the affection, and abiding in the understanding and will; see Pro 3:3.

Proverbs 7:4

Say unto wisdom, Thou art my sister,…. Intimately acquainted, greatly beloved, and highly delighted in: this may be understood both of the Gospel, the wisdom of God in a mystery, which men should be conversant with, be strongly affected to, and take delight and pleasure in; and of Christ, the essential Wisdom of God, and who stands in the relation of a brother to his people, and should be respected as such;

and call understanding thy kinswoman; or “kinsman” (a); such Christ is in our nature, our “goel”, our near kinsman, partaker of the same flesh and blood, and therefore is not ashamed to call us brethren, nor should we be ashamed to call him kinsman: moreover, his Word and Gospel, and the understanding of it, should be familiar to us; it should be well “known” (b) by us, as the word used signifies, and dwell richly in us.

(a) מדע “cognatum”, Piscator. (b) “Notam”, Montanus, Michaelis.

Proverbs 7:5

That they may keep thee from the strange woman,…. Nothing has a greater tendency than Christ and his Gospel, and an intimate acquaintance with them, and a retention of them, to keep from all sin, from all fleshly lusts, from the sin of uncleanness; and also from all the errors, heresies, idolatry, superstition, and will worship, of the whore of Rome; a stranger to God and true godliness, to Christ and his truths, the Spirit and his operations;

from the stranger which flattereth with her words; See Gill on Pro 2:16; see Gill on Pro 5:3, and see Gill on Pro 6:24.

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