Mishlai is a term (from “mashal”) to compare or illustrate. By 940 BCE, 1 Kings 4:32 Solomon gave over 3,000 proverbs and over 1,000 songs to the children of Israel. In 4:35 we are told that Kings of the earth sent ambassadors to hear the sayings and record them. They are known in ancient manuscripts of many nations of the past. In the Book of Proverbs, all of chapters 1:1-9:18; 10:1-22:16; 25:1-29:27 are ascribed to Solomon, some chosen by King Hezekiah from the ancient Royal Library of Jerusalem (now gone). Many of these ancient proverbs were offered originally to the children of Solomon in the form of “fatherly advice”. I thought it might be interesting this Father’s Day to look at what the wisest man in the world thought was important to pass to his children.
- Offer your child discipline and point the way to truth (Prov. 1:8-9). Fathers – Teach them the blessing of correction from God (3:11-12).
- Help them choose friends and avoid bad company (Prov. 1:10-19)Do not follow after those who plot to gain in an evil or violent way. “Bad company corrupts good morals” (1 Cor. 15:33 in the context of teaching in a misleading way).
- Give them a hunger to search diligently to find truth (Prov. 2:1-19)Seeking God’s truth will help you to be guarded from: harmful settings (7, 8, 11); evil men (12-14); deceptive women (16-19).
- Show them how the Word of God will hold you in the safety of good company and offer a long life (3:1-4).
- Teach them to guard their heart and watch their tongue and path (4:20-27) in PURITY!