October 4, 2023
The Bible Edge
Practical Points to Ponder from Proverbs
Hear, O my son, and receive my sayings; and the years of thy life shall be many.
In a world that seems to be consumed with healthier life choices this one verse is somehow overlooked. In it we find the answer to a long life. It’s simple, …receive my sayings… The word “receive” must mean more than hearing only, it must mean doing that which was received. Think about a football analogy. For a receiver to make a “catch” there are a few requirements. They must be in bounds (college one foot, pros both feet), must catch the ball, must “control” the ball, and if running in an open field they must make a “football move”. This means they catch the ball then run a step or more demonstrating that they have made a reception.
The same is applied to today’s verse. A person must hear His sayings, catch them in their ears and heart, then perform them. If anyone will do these, the years of their life shall be many. Paul touched on this in Romans 2:13, (For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified. James mentioned it in James 1:22, But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. Jesus also said similar; And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say? Whosoever cometh to me, and heareth my sayings, and doeth them, I will shew you to whom he is like: (Luke 6:46-47). Then He goes on to describe the person who builds his house on a firm foundation as opposed to the ones who build on the shifting sand. Rains came, winds came, and floods came. The house built on the good foundation stood, the house built on the earth fell. The good foundation was, as Jesus said, “a rock” (Luke 6:48). Jesus, of course is the Rock.
For a double dose of a promise of a long life consider Ephesians 6:1-3 Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right. Honour thy father and mother; (which is the first commandment with promise;) That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth. This promise was first given in Deuteronomy 5:16 in the Decalogue (the ten commandments).
With all this said, if anybody desires a long life with many years lived the best advice is to receive His sayings. Hear them, catch them, and perform them. By doing so good decisions about the care for your body, the health of your mental state, and peace within the soul will be found. But like the football receiver who may make contact with the ball with their hands but drop it making the pass incomplete, so too are many concerning His sayings. Sayings like, But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; (Matthew 5:44).
Now, that’s an edge, a Bible Edge for life and the long living of it.
William T. Howe, Ph.D.