Great post by John Armstrong on Proverbs. Armstrong asserts:
Perhaps no part of Holy Scripture has been more frequently abused… than the book of Proverbs.
Armstrong goes on to explain what the proverbs are and are not, and their God-intended purpose.
Not long ago a friend and I were discussing this very same problem, after some pastors he knew had thrown around a proverb or two, wielding them as if they were laws. But proverbs are not laws. They are expressions of wisdom. Sometimes they are even contradictory wisdom.
Now I do not believe, as many assert, that the Bible “contradicts” itself. The laws and promises are consistent in all ways. One has to remove them from their intended context to make a case that they are contradictory. But when it comes to the book of Proverbs it is reasonable to see that some sayings offer different outcomes for similar actions. That is easy enough to explain. Again, proverbs are not laws or promises, they are expressions of wisdom to help us navigate life. I’ve heard R.C. Sproul says about Proverbs, essentially, in life “sometimes this will happen, and sometimes that will happen.” Proverbs prepares us for “this” and “that”.
Check Out: Misusing the Proverbs