Proverbs 4:14-15

Proverbs 4:14-15 "Enter not into the path of the wicked, and go not in the way of evil men. Avoid it, pass not by it, turn from it, and pass away."
Church East Aurora NY
These next two verses tell us that there’s more to success than getting virtue.  There’s more to success than getting wisdom.  Wisdom is the principal thing but it isn’t the only thing to consider when preparing for life.  Not only would Rehoboam need to get wisdom if he wanted to be successful, but he would also need to avoid getting wickedness.
It is quite possible to entertain both virtue and vice at the same time.  It is quite possible to pursue wisdom while entertaining wickedness at the same time.  This consumption of both good and bad will not produce spiritual success.  For example, one can consume both nutritious foods and non-nutritious foods at the same time.  Western New Yorkers do this on a regular basis when we order our famous chicken wings, which always come with a little bag of celery and carrots.  Eating a dozen chicken wings and a few small sticks of carrots on a regular basis will not lead to dietary success.  The nutritious vegetables don’t make the fried chicken wings nutritious.  We can consume both healthy and unhealthy food at the same time but the healthy food doesn’t make the unhealthy food safe for our consumption.  Eventually, the fatty food will have its negative effect on the body.

Again, it is quite possible to entertain both virtue and vice at the same time.  It is possible to walk the way of wisdom while contemplating the way of wickedness.  A married man can perform both good and bad at the same time.  A married man can spend time with his wife in sincere conversation, get her flowers on a regular basis and treat her kindly while committing adultery with another woman.  Adultery doesn’t make a man’s kindness unkind but more importantly, a man’s kindness surely doesn’t make his adultery acceptable.  Virtue in a marriage doesn’t negate infidelity in a marriage.  It is possible to entertain both virtue and vice in a marriage but eventually, adultery will have its destructive effect on the marriage.

First and foremost, Rehoboam needed to get wisdom if he were to succeed as a man and as a king.  He needed to follow his father’s instruction and stay on the way of wisdom that his father set out for him.  Secondly and just as important, he needed to have the ability to AVOID the way of the wicked altogether.  He could not afford to flirt with the way of the wicked.  Solomon didn’t tell his son to resist the way of wicked men – he told him to “avoid it, pass not by it, turn from it, and pass away.”  Sin should not be contemplated; it should be avoided.  Evil should not be considered; it should be avoided.  We can’t afford to flirt with wickedness – we must avoid it altogether.  Solomon wanted his son to avoid wickedness - he didn’t want his son to give it a look or a thought.  

Sin is incredibly enticing.  Given enough time and attention, it will win.  Wickedness is seductive.  Given enough thought and consideration, it will prevail.  Flirting with iniquity is truly like playing with fire.  Seeing evil as an option is like playing with a venomous snake without any professional training or equipment.  Eventually, sin will sink its sharp poisonous fangs into your soul and do great damage.  It is the fundamental nature of evil to get and keep our attention just long enough to bite us while we’ll vulnerable.

Human history tells the story of countless holy men and women succumbing to immorality simply because they entertained evil for but a moment.  To succeed in this life, we need more than virtue.  To succeed in the Christian life, we need to aggressively avoid wickedness while pursuing wisdom.  Flirting with worldly pleasure will eventually result in getting into bed with worldly pleasure.  No amount of virtue will save us from the damaging results of embracing worldly pleasure.  Sin always wins when we initiate the encounter.  Evil always gets a sale when we open the door and hear its tempting pitch.  If we’re willing to dance with wickedness, it won’t matter how many times we’ve been to church or how many times we’ve read the Bible.  Wickedness always wins if we give it an audience for our hearts are “desperately wicked” (Jeremiah 17:9).  The wicked woman of Proverbs 7 didn’t slay weak men – she slew strong men” according to verse 26.  She did that because those strong men weren’t strong enough to avoid her altogether.  Solomon saw men approach her at night instead of avoiding her altogether.  Once this wicked woman had a man’s attention, she would easily win his heart by winning his eyes and ears through beauty and seduction.

It is possible to consume both virtue and vice at the same time.  It is possible to entertain both wisdom and wickedness at the same time.  Once we open our hearts to wickedness on any level, all of the wisdom we’ve accrued will be in jeopardy.  Once we open our hearts to evil on the smallest of levels, all of the virtue we’ve obtained will be in danger.  Judas Iscariot opened his heart to evil when he asked the enemies of Christ, “What will ye give me, and I will deliver Him unto you?” (Matthew 26:15).  All of the virtue that Judas had obtained following Jesus would soon be lost because he gave evil the opportunity to impress him.  All of the wisdom that Judas had gleaned under Christ’s leadership would soon be lost because he opened his heart to wicked men.  He failed to AVOID evil altogether.

If we let our eyes gaze on evil long enough, it will look enticing.  If we let our ears listen to evil long enough, it will sound enticing.  Once evil becomes enticing (and it will in short time), it will be near impossible to resist.  Once we partake of it, it will eventually sting us.  Such is the nature of alcohol as Solomon described it in Proverbs 23:32, “AT the LAST it biteth like a serpent, and stingeth like an adder.”  This is exactly why this wise man preceded that observation by saying, LOOK NOT thou upon the wine when it is red, when it giveth his colour in the cup, when it moveth itself aright” in verse 31.  It wasn’t his counsel to resist the “DRINK NOT” – it was his counsel to “LOOK NOT” so as to avoid the enticing urge to drink it.  Avoid evil and you’ll avoid the temptation to partake of it.

Son of God, “a LITTLE leaven leaveneth the whole lump” (Galatians 5:9).  Therefore, avoid leaven – AVOID evil.  Don’t play with it.  Don’t entertain it.  Don’t underestimate it.  Daughter of God, “be not deceived: evil communications CORRUPT good manners” (1 Corinthians 15:33).  It is most possible to have good manners and evil communications at the same time but eventually, evil will corrupt and pollute the good.  Therefore, AVOID evil communications.  Don’t flirt with evil.  Don’t underestimate it.

Get wisdom and with all thy getting, get the counsel to avoid wickedness altogether.
Much good can be undone by a little wrong.  





Rehoboam Solomon fear of God health pride self-sufficiency wisdom 1 Corinthians 2020 5th Commandment Aaron Abel Abigail Abraham Absalom Accident Achan Acts 17 Adam Adolescence Adolf Hitler Adulterer Adulteress Affair Age Ahijah Ahithophel Albany Alcoholism Ally American America Amnon Andrew Finch Answered Prayer Apple of Eye Arrogance Asaph Athletes Backbone Back Balance Bank Accounts Bathsheba Bedroom Beecher Benefit Benjamin Bethlehem Bezaleel Bible reading Bible teacher Bible Biblical instruction Bin Laden Birth Boasting Bonar Bondage Boyfriend Buffalo Bills Building CA Rt 1 Cable News Calamity Call of Duty Calvin Canaan Cancer Candidates Careers Casey Viner Character Christian upbringing Christ Churches Clamor Clinton Clothes Clothing Coaches College Communication Conception Confidentiality Conservation Contrast Conversation Corinthians Corrupt Cosigner Cosigning Courting Creation Creator Crime Criminals Crooked Curiosity Currency Danger Daniel Data Dating Daughters David Death Delilah Democratic Desire Deuteronomy Devil Diligent Discovery Disease Dishonesty Dishonor Divorce Drink Drug lords Drunk Driver Drunk Early Adulthood Ecclesiastes Economic Stability Eden Elderly Elihu Elijah Emerson Engagement Enoch Ephesians Ephraimites Esau Esther Evening Eve Exodus Expectations Experience Faithful Famine Fashion Favor of God Fear of the Lord Fearing God Feast of Purim Financial Security Fingers Food Foolish Freedom Friendships Friend Froward Fruit GPS Galatians Gender Differences Genesis Gideon Gileadites Girlfriend Glad Godhead Goliath Gossip Grandchildren Gratitude Grave Grief Guide Guns Hagar Haman Hamlet Hannah Harlot Hate Evil Hatred Healthy Heaven Hebrews Herod History Hollywood Holy Spirit Homicide Honesty House Humble Humility Hypocrisy Hypocrites Immorality Independence Inherit Insecurity Insight Instructing Integrity Internet Interview Inventions Isaac Israel Jacob Jairus James Jealousy Jeremiah Jeroboam Jerusalem Jesus Christ Jesus Jewish Law Jewish Jobs Job John the Apostle Jonah Joseph Joshua Josiah Joy Judah Judaism Judas Iscariot Judges Judgmental Justice System Kindness King David King Hezekiah Kings King Language Law Enforcement Law Leaders Learn Liar Lies Life Lesson Lion Longevity Look Lottery Love Triangle Lowliness Luke 7 Luke Luther Lying Manna Mark Martyr Marvel Mary Matthew Media Men Mindset Mocking Monopoly Moody Morality Mordecai Morning Moses Mouths Natural Disaster Naughtiness Nebuchadnezzar Nehemiah New Tricks Noah Nobles Numbers O.J. Simpson Obama Observation Old Dogs Order Parenting Passion Pastors Paul the Apostle Paul Perspective Perverse Perversion Peter Pharisees Pharoah Philippians Plant Pleasure Politicians Politics Polygamy Poor Popularity Potiphar's Wife Potiphar\'s Wife Potiphar\\\'s Wife Potiphar\\\\\\\'s Wife Prate Prating Pregnancy Pregnant Princes Prince Principal Thing Principal Procrastinate Procrastinator Profit Prophecy Prophet Prosperity Gospel Prostitute Protests Proverbs Proverb Psalm 21 Psalm 35 Psalm 37 Psalms Psalm Punishment Pure Purity Purpose Rachel Rage Rebekkah Rehoboam Rehoboma Relationship Remember Reprove Republican Reputation Research Resume Resurrection Revealing Revelation Rich Man Rich Ridicule Road Rulers Rules Sabbath Sadness Samson Samuel Satan Saul Scale Scam Science Scientist Scripture Sea of Galilee Seasons Secrets Seed Self-Confidence Selfishness Shakespeare Shame Shane Gaskill Shenandoah Valley Shoe Laces Sickness Silence Simon Peter Simon Social Media Society Solomon Song of Solomon Sons Sorrow Source Speaking Speak Speech Spiritual Security Sporting Sport Spouses Steal Stephen Stock Market Strange Woman Strength Stress Surely Surety Swatting Sweat Talebearer Talkative Talking Tamar Taylor Teachers Teaching Teenagers Teens Tendency Theft Theocracy Timothy To be or not to be Toddlers Tolerance Tongue Tour Guide Travel Treasure Trickery Trinity Trips Trouble True Love True Wisdom Turner Tyler Barriss Understanding Unforgiveness Unhealthy Universities Unjust Upright Value Vehicle Vengeance Virtuous Walk Washington Watsom Way of Life Way Weight Winking Wink Wise Men Witnessing Womb Women Work Ethic Worth Yankees YouTube Zechariah addiction adultery advertisements advertiser advertising advice advisor affection affirmation aggression alcohol amos angels anointing ant anxiety appetite argument assumption as attractions authority background backyard bankrupt battle beginning birds bitterness blessed brain bright broken nose buckler campfire cardinal sins career carelessness car cause certainty charity chastening childhood childrearing children child choices church attendance church command confidence confident consequences considerate contention contentment conversaion correction counselor counsel covetousness criticism cruelty cynicism dads dad darkness dark daughter debt deception decisions defend defense demands destruction determination diamonds diligence direction disappointment discernment discipleship disciples disciple discipline discontentment discord discretion distractions distress doctrine dogs drinking drugs dying ear education effort emotions employee employer employment enemies enticement enticing envy equity evil communications evil men evil women evil example eyelids eyes ezekiel facts failure fairness faith family fathers father favor fear of God fear feelings feminine fighting fight filthy finances fire flattery focus following foolishness foolishnes fools fool forgiveness fornication friends future gambling gender gold good men good government grace greed guard guilt happiness happy harm hate headlights health heart hear hold your peace holiness home honor hope hunger husbands husband ignorance illustration income inequality infidelity influence iniquity insomnia instincts instruction intimacy investigation isaiah issued issue jewelry judgment justice just kidnapper kidney kids knowledge labor law of sowing and reaping laziness lazy leadership learning legacy length of days lessons let life light lips listening listen little liver living loans loneliness long life love lucifer lust man marketing marriage math memorization memory mercy messenger millions mind ministry mischief misery mistakes mom money mothers mother motive mouth movies nature necklace neck neighbor obscenity observant oil oppression oppressor organs ornaments parable paranoia parenthood parents parent pastoring path peace peer pressure peers peer permission personification pleasant politician ponder pornography pottymouth poverty power prayer preservation pride priests private procrastination prodigal profanity prosperity prostitution protection protect prudence public restroom purchases reading reaping reason rebellion rebuke regret rejection relate relationships relevant remedy remembrance remorse repetition replacement reproof respect responsibility responsible retain retention riches righteousness righteous risk robber romance rubies safety sailor salvation schools scorner secret security seduction seeing see self-sufficiency self-sufficient serpent seven deadly sins seven sexist sexual sin sex silver simple simplicity sinners sin skepticism slander sleeplessness sleep slothfulness sluggard smoke to the eyes smoke son soul sowing spleen spouse stability stranger strange strife striving successful success suicide talents talk taxes teacher television temptation tendencies thief thieves thinking think thoughtfulness thoughts thought threats time tithe tree of life trust truth tv vehicles vice video games vinegar to the teeth vinegar violence violent virtue virtuous woman visual voice of God voice vulgar walking war wealth well wickedness wicked wife will wine wisdom wise sayings wise wives woman word of God words workplace work worry young man young people young youth