Father and Son

Proverbs 8:32-33

“Now therefore hearken unto me, O ye children: for blessed are they that keep my ways. Hear instruction, and be wise, and refuse it not.”

Listen Very Carefully

Alternative meanings for the Hebrew word translated in the KJV as “hearken” (verse 32) and “hear” (verse 33) include “hear intelligently” and “listen carefully.” Some years ago, a popular UK comedy series featured the catchphrase; “Listen very carefully I will say this only once.”

It is interesting that Solomon doesn’t say it only once. Instead the book of Proverbs hammers home the need for wisdom, time and time again. A good comparison might be a parent constantly repeating instructions to a child. It is no surprise that Proverbs 8:32 includes the word “children” directly after the instruction to listen carefully.

Application

Having listened to wisdom the next challenge is application (for blessed are they that keep my ways). Dipping into Strong’s again the Hebrew word shown as “keep” may also be translated as “guard.” Why would we guard wisdom? Because it is precious and to be valued (Proverbs 3:15 and Proverbs 8:18-19). And yet, like children, we struggle with the difficult concept of wisdom.

Growing Up

God never intended for us to remain as children. Learning and applying wisdom is part of growing up. Growth is not just about height and girth. We are also required to grow in our relationship with God. This challenge is clearly presented in Scripture.

My eldest son is thirty-two in August. I’m glad he has grown up. I am blessed by the way in which he has matured as a man, but I am even more blessed by his spiritual growth. He is fractionally taller than me, but that does not change the fact that we are father and son. He calls me Dad, not David, and he often seeks my advice, just as I still turn to my eighty-one year old father in the same way.

It doesn’t matter how much we grow, our relationship with God will always be one of Father and child. We will always need to listen carefully to His voice. We will always need to seek His wisdom and follow His ways. But sometimes, just like children, we may need correction.

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About David

David is the son of Ken and father of Nick, who first introduced him to blogging. Ken is a retired Baptist Minister who continues to preach regularly, despite being in his eighties. Nick is training for full time Baptist ministry after several years serving as a youth pastor. Somehow the being a preacher thing skipped a generation with David. Although half Scottish David grew up in England and in the Channel Island of Guernsey. He served in the British Merchant Navy after leaving school, and did not attend University until he was twenty-eight years old. By this time he was married to Marilyn and father to Nick, and Nick’s brother Michael. Another son (James) was born the day before the start of David’s final University examinations. Beth and John followed a few years later. The older boys are all married, and David and Marilyn have been presented with four grandsons to date. Beth has served with British Youth for Christ (YFC) for three years as a member and then the leader of the Nomad cage football team (Google it!). She has recently taken up a new post involving a new YFC ministry (watch this space). John, who is 18, is now the only one of our children still living at home. David and Marilyn met in 1973 and have been married since 1979. Marilyn is a trained nurse, who gave up nursing to be a full time mother, grandmother, and maker of cakes for pastors, youth pastors, and any church function that needs cakes. There is a rumour that she secretly reads David’s blogs. Family and church leave little time for hobbies, but David enjoys walking and cycling, and listening to music. He also dabbles with languages and is currently learning to speak Welsh. (By way of explanation the Welsh border is 11 miles from David's home, and his water bills arrive in both English and Welsh from Dŵr Cymru.) View all posts by David

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