Proverbs 5:7-14

Proverbs 5:7-14

5:7 — And now, O sons, listen to me, and do not depart from the words of my mouth.

This section begins another speech addressing the same theme. These are practical words of advice. The words of the father’s mouth are to be heeded and not the words of the faithless woman.

 

5:8 — Keep your way far from her, and do not go near the door of her house,

This is similar to 1 Tim. 2:22 and Mt. 5:28-29 [2 Timothy 2:22 So flee youthful passions and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace, along with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart. Matthew 5:28-29 But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart. If your right eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body be thrown into hell.] One does not resist temptation by hanging around the temptress. The young man must flee, keep away, remain at a far distance from her. Eventually, all men will fall if he flirts with temptations like this.

May not a man be permitted to talk with her, merely by way of amusement? Is it unlawful to drink a glass in her house, and to satisfy our curiosity by observing what passes in it, and by what arts she contrives to seduce those who are less established in virtue than ourselves? Yes; it is unlawful to have the least correspondence with her. By the requirements of the ceremonial law, no man was to be in the same house with a leper. The moral law forbids us to enter into a house full of the leprosy of sin. Her house is full of snares, and her hands are as bands. The devil glances in her smiles, and lurks in her dress and in her motions. (Lawson)

 

5:9-11 — 9 lest you give your honor to others and your years to the merciless, 10 lest strangers take their fill of your strength, and your labors go to the house of a foreigner, 11 and at the end of your life you groan, when your flesh and body are consumed,

To court this woman is to waste our powers, our energies, our honor, our labors, etc. One’s wages and wealth may also be wasted. The general meaning is that all of the young man’s efforts will have been in vain. It was to be for himself and his household but now it is given to other people (did we not see this in the parable of the prodigal son, Lk. 15:13?). “Although sexual immorality today may not lead to slavery, it still leads to alimony, child support, broken homes, hurt, jealousy, lonely people, and venereal disease.” (Waltke)

The father has already described death as the final end (a few verses above), now he shows how that death comes about. The “lot” of the adulterer is a huge waste. His life will be filled with groaning and his body will waste away. There may be temporary exceptions (Hugh Hefner?) but the end still awaits him.

 

5:12-14 — 12 and you say, “How I hated discipline, and my heart despised reproof! 13 I did not listen to the voice of my teachers or incline my ear to my instructors. 14 I am at the brink of utter ruin in the assembled congregation.”

Only a sheer fool will continue to pant after this life of waste. After all this, he will regret what he did because it yielded nothing good. The assembled congregation is either a legal body appointed to judge this matter or simply the public at large before whom this fool stood. “Made public, adultery brings personal shame, humiliation to loved ones, and loss of respect in the larger community.” (Hubbard) “The public shame… will be complete and unchangeable. No one will ever forget that the son had reached the point of being completely spent by profligate activity.” (Longman)

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