An Overview Of The Old Testament

Part 160 – Even A Child Is Known By Works Through Don’t Curse Parents (Proverbs 20:11-20)

To download this handout in a PDF format click here >

1. Can you know a child by what he or she does?
Yes: “Even a child is known by his doings, whether his work be pure, and whether it be right” (Proverbs 20:11).

  • Luke 6:43-44
  • Children, unless mentally incapable, reach a point wherein they know to do good or evil (Isaiah 7:16).
  • Children can be taught and expected to do right (Deuteronomy 6:7 and Ephesians 6:1-4).
  • A child left alone is not going to end up good (Proverbs 29:15).

2. To whom do we owe credit for our abilities to see and hear?
The Lord: “The hearing ear, and the seeing eye, the LORD hath made even both of them” (Proverbs 20:12).

  • Genesis 1:27, Exodus 4:11, Isaiah 40:28, Isaiah 42:5, Isaiah 45:12, and Revelation 4:11.

3. Is it good to love to sleep?
No: “Love not sleep, lest thou come to poverty; open thine eyes, and thou shalt be satisfied with bread” (Proverbs 20:13).

  • Proverbs 6:9-11, Proverbs 10:4, Proverbs 13:4, Proverbs 19:15, Proverbs 24:30-34, Romans 12:11, and Hebrews 6:12.
  • This does not mean we cannot rest (Exodus 23:12 and Matthew 26:46) or take time away from things (Mark 6:46).

4. Are there people who are dishonest when trading merchandise?
Yes: “It is naught, it is naught, saith the buyer: but when he is gone his way, then he boasteth” (Proverbs 20:14).

  • Proverbs 11:1
  • The Lord takes vengeance on crooks (I Thessalonians 4:6).
  • Whether we’re trying to drop the price of something or not, we must always be HONEST (Romans 12:17, Ephesians 4:25, and I Peter 2:12).

5. What are the lips of knowledge called (in our context)?
“There is gold, and a multitude of rubies: but the lips of knowledge are a precious jewel” (Proverbs 20:15).

  • Proverbs 8:11, Proverbs 25:11, Ecclesiastes 12:9-11, Acts 26:24-26, and Ephesians 4:29.

6. If someone was a surety [one taking responsibility for the debt of another] for a stranger, were there measures in place to be sure the debt was recovered?
Yes: “Take his garment that is surety for a stranger: and take a pledge of him for a strange woman… Take his garment that is surety for a stranger, and take a pledge of him for a strange woman” (Proverbs 20:16 and Proverbs 27:13).

  • See also: Proverbs 6:1-5, Proverbs 11:15, Proverbs 17:18, and Proverbs 22:26-27.
  • ASV translates this verse as this: “Take his garment that is surety for a stranger; And hold him in pledge that is surety for foreigners” (Proverbs 20:16; ASV 1901).

7. Even if deception seems sweet, what is the end result likened to?
“Bread of deceit is sweet to a man; but afterwards his mouth shall be filled with gravel (Proverbs 20:17).

  • Job 20:5, Proverbs 9:17-18, and Isaiah 47:8-9; cf. Hebrews 11:24-25.

8. Is it good to get counsel?
By implication, yes: “Every purpose is established by counsel: and with good advice make war” (Proverbs 20:18).

  • Proverbs 11:14, Proverbs 15:22, Proverbs 24:6; cf. Proverbs 19:20-21!
  • Discussion and counsel are good for us even in spiritual matters (Acts 15).

9. Should we interact with those who flatter with their lips?
No: “He that goeth about as a talebearer revealeth secrets: therefore meddle not with him that flattereth with his lips” (Proverbs 20:19).

  • Talebearing is not good (Leviticus 19:16, Proverbs 18:8, and Proverbs 26:20-22).
  • There are people who say on thing and feel another (Psalms 28:3, Psalms 55:21, Proverbs 5:3-4, Matthew 26:21-25, and John 12:1-6).
  • We should avoid those who use flattery (Proverbs 26:24-28 and Romans 16:17-18).

10. What will happen to those who curse his or her parents?
“Whoso curseth [bring into contempt] his father or his mother, his lamp shall be put out in obscure darkness” (Proverbs 20:20).

  • Exodus 20:12, Exodus 21:17, Proverbs 30:17, and Ephesians 6:1-4.