Diffence between Proverbs and commands?

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Sopranette, Feb 4, 2008.

  1. Sopranette

    Sopranette
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    What is the difference, if any, between a proverb and a command?
    Here's some of the things that may be the difference:

    A command is to be followed word for word. A proverb is not to be taken so literally.
    A command is to be followed. A proverb is advice.
    A command leads us in a positive direction, with or without us knowing the consequences. A proverb leads us in a positive direction, and tells us the consequences.
    A command is direct. A proverb is indirect.
    There is no interpretation necessary in a command. A proverb is open to interpretation.
    A command is in the present. A proverb is a promise in the future.
    A command is law. A proverb is not.

    Any other ideas?

    love,

    Sopranette
     
    #1 Sopranette, Feb 4, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 4, 2008
  2. Jkdbuck76

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    Dr. Adrian Rogers once explained that a promise from God will happen.
    However a proverb is a general principle, that, if followed, will yield and intended result.

    For example, if you raise your kids in church, they should turn out to be Godly. But then again, they might turn out to be axe murderers. The Bible does not promise us that if we raise our children in a Godly way that they would not depart from it....but we have the proverb anyway.
     
  3. Gold Dragon

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    Some good points above.

    Proverbs are wise sayings.
    They are not commands.
    They are not promises.

    The two most common interpretive mistakes when reading proverbs is to see them as either commands or as promises. But doing so does not take the literary context of the proverb into consideration. They are written as a collection of words of wisdom.
     
  4. webdog

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    This was my point in "the rod" thread I started. The rod is always taken quite literally that corporal punishment is the ONLY way a child is to be corrected...that this is "God's command" to parents.
     
  5. Amy.G

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    Proverbs 22:6 (Amplified Bible)

    6Train up a child in the way he should go [and in keeping with his individual gift or bent], and when he is old he will not depart from it.

    From this version, the verse seems to imply that we are to train our children to pursue their God given gifts. It doesn't seem to be speaking of discpline or that the child will never go against God.
     
  6. DonnaMartinez

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    This is one of the proverbs that I really take to heart...
    Proverbs 12:4 A virtuous woman is a crown to her husband: but she that maketh ashamed is as rottenness in his bones.
     
  7. Amy.G

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    Amen!
    Just think about the phrase "rotteness in his bones". That would be miserable. I do not want to be that kind of woman. Although, I admit there have been times I was that woman. :tear:
     
  8. Sopranette

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    Could a proverb be a conditional promise? "If" you do this, "then" this will happen.


    love,

    Sopranette
     
  9. Amy.G

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    Well, God's word is truth, so the proverbs are true, so we can have confidence that when we follow them, we will get the result they have spoken of.
     
  10. DonnaMartinez

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    Yeah, I too have been there, and am currently paying the price for not following Gods instructions for Christian wives. Although I think at some point all women would say they've felt they could have been that woman too.
     
  11. The Scribe

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    Proverbs is still part of the Word of God. Proverbs is another book of promises and commandments. Unless people are picking a choosing.
     
  12. Revmitchell

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    What fool would take something God said and only take it as a suggestion? If God says something is the best way to do it why would someone want to do anything else as if it is not disobedient?


    Disclaimer - These are rhetorical questions.
     
  13. readmore

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    Proverbs are by definition not promises and commands, but general truths that must be taken metaphorically at times and certainly in the context of the surrounding verses, chapters, and books.

    Before you give the knee-jerk reaction of how I'm a liberal Bible-hater, please just do some investigation first into the different types of ancient wisdom literature.
     
  14. Revmitchell

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    Refering to scripture as if it is some ancient secular wisdom is incorrect. Don't let the name proverbs fool you. It is the Word of God. And it does not hold the same characteristics as secular "wisdom". It carries with it the very words of God. Putting it on the same level as secular proverbs certainly reveals why you say what you do. Proverbs is still the words of God.
     
  15. menageriekeeper

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    now here's an interesting question:

    Can something be considered the Word of God and yet not be considered a command to be obeyed?

    Proverbs is one example, but what about the words of Paul where he expressly tells us that it is own opinion and not a command from God. Those words are still included in Scripture so should we regard them as commands as well or simply good advice as Paul intended?
     
  16. tinytim

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    To show that proverbs are general truths take the verse already shown in this thread...

    How many knows of parents that raised their children in church, and ended up with one or two black sheep of the family...

    I know quite a few...

    So just because the Bible says Train up a child in the way he should go, does not mean that EVERYTIME they will end up a Christian.

    That proves it is a general truth, but not specific to every situation.

    Proverbs are wise sayings, and to properly interpret them, we have to realize they are poetry, not doctrinal.
     
  17. Revmitchell

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    So what are you suggesting is the option here and not doctrine? Train up a child in the way he should go is merely a wise saying like confucious and not a command of God? Bottom line is is Proverbs the Word of God?
     
    #17 Revmitchell, Feb 5, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 5, 2008
  18. tinytim

    tinytim
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    Of course it is a command.. but not a promise that EVERYTIME it will happen... It is a general truth.. Most of the time it will happen.
    Just like the one verse that says his people will not be seen begging bread.. but yet I have seen Christians that were homeless begging bread in homeless shelters...

    Proverbs is in the poetry section in the Bible From Job to Song of Solomon.

    Do you also believe everything we do is in vain? Solomon wrote that in Ecclesiastes... It is poetry.. Beautiful, and to properly understand it, we have to put ourselves in the poet's shoes. (And if I had married 300 wives.. everything I would do would be in vain also!!! :praying: )
     
  19. tinytim

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    Yes it is the Word of God.. but as a general truth... or else every kid born and raised in church would go to Heaven 100% of the time.. and we both know that doesn't happen.

    How many times have you seen 2 children from the same family, raised in church... one turns out a fine Christian, the other a lost sinner?
    It happens all the time.

    So if we demand that this is an unbreakable promise, then we are making God a liar when a child raised in church ends up in Hell.
     
  20. Revmitchell

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    Great then it is obvious we do not see it as such. But we do need to see the command of how to raise our children not as an option.
     

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