From the seductress who flatters with her words.
6 For at the window of my house
I looked through my lattice,
7 And saw among the simple,
I perceived among the youths,
A young man devoid of understanding,
8 Passing along the street near her corner;
And he took the path to her house
9 In the twilight, in the evening,
In the black and dark night.
Proverbs 7:5-9 (NIV) 5 They will keep you from the adulterous woman,
from the wayward woman with her seductive words.
6 At the window of my house
I looked down through the lattice.
7 I saw among the simple,
I noticed among the young men,
a youth who had no sense.
8 He was going down the street near her corner,
walking along in the direction of her house
9 at twilight, as the day was fading,
as the dark of night set in.
The windows were latticed. This is much like our blinds of today. They allowed for air movement but gave some privacy and provided shade. In the photo below, the "balconies" have intricately latticed windows.
In these verses, the writer is telling about something that really happened. Not just a personification, but a real example. As he is looking out his window, he actually sees something happening.
"Looking forth into the street on the throng of young and thoughtless persons passing to and fro, among them I discerned... a young man void of understanding; a fool, who, without any deliberate intention of sinning, put himself in the way of temptation, played on the borders of transgression. The way of escape was before him, as it is in all temptations (1 Corinthians 10:13), but he would not take it." - Pulpit Commentary
The translations for verse 7 are as follows:
NIV a youth who had no sense
NLT who lacked common sense
BSB a young man lacking judgment
KJV A young man void of understanding,
GNT foolish fellow
ISV a senseless young man
GOD a young man without much sense
The actual Hebrew means a youth who has nothing on the tablet of his memory, he is lacking in his mind. We would say something like this:
He doesn't have enough sense to come in out of the rain.
If his brains were dynamite, he wouldn't have enough to blow his nose.
He's a brick shy of a load.
He doesn't have the sense God gave a goose.
He doesn't have enough sense to tie his shoelaces.
He doesn't have enough sense to know when to quit.
He doesn't have enough sense to turn around.
He doesn't have a brain in his head.
He doesn't have enough sense to make his way out of a paper bag.
I could go on....
It's easy to take advantage of someone who is stupid. Why is it that teenagers are so stupid? Parents, teachers, police, pastors, doctors can all tell them not to do something, and give them the reasons why you shouldn't do something, and THEY STILL GO DO IT!!! Why?
First of all, teenagers' brains are not fully developed. They think they are smart and an adult but physically and biologically they are NOT. That's why it's up to adults to continue guiding, teaching and setting boundaries. They will get all up in your face and scream at you that they are old enough to take care of themselves. But they should be whistling in the wind because we, as adults, know they are not adults and not old enough to take care of themselves and make wise decisions. Some are more mature than others, but they are still teenagers.
Second, they don't have life experiences. They aren't old enough to have experienced what adults have. As we age, we learn. Sometimes the hard way. It's up to us to share those experiences and try to help them so they don't have to learn the hard way. Although, of course, some have to anyway.
Third, in America, our youth don't usually have to go through the hard things that kids did back in the old days. With our technology, our economy, and medical breakthroughs most don't have to experience some of the things that aged kids in the old days. They don't have to pick cotton from sunup to sundown. They don't have to lose a brother or sister to diptheria. They don't have to experience going to school only during bad weather because otherwise they have chores to do on the farm. They don't have to experience cooking on a wood stove and washing clothes all day long with washboards, tin tubs and back breaking work. They don't have to get up at 5am to feed the livestock before they go to school. They don't have to walk to school. So, thankfully, our kids haven't experienced a lot of hardness and pain kids in the old days had to deal with. We are spoiled to a more or less extent. That can be good because no one wants to go back to those hard times. But it can be bad as children age into teens with little experience with harsh reality.
This particular young man hasn't got life experience in the area of seduction and temptation. Maybe he's a rich young man who has had servants doing everything for him and he's basically simple. Maybe it's because he's experienced some mental trauma that makes him vulnerable. Or maybe he's been raised right but he is hardheaded and thinks he knows everything. He is rejecting everything his mother and father have told him and done it anyway. Maybe he has book smarts but no commonsense. There are people, even adults, who are like this as well. Many adults never grow up. They are basically still simple like a little child or rebellious like a child. When someone is that rebellious against good sense and logic, you know they aren't mature enough to make good decisions. They haven't grown up. They are nowhere near being an adult in the true sense.
Any way you look at it, this person is a walking target for unscrupulous people. They are naive. Naive means showing a lack of experience, wisdom, or judgment.
This young man walks in the way of temptation. And there is someone waiting to take advantage of him. That someone will not stop until they have ruined him in every way they can. They will take his money, his assets, his mental health and sanity, his trust, his physical health, his future. Then they will walk away and go on to the next, leaving him to try to pick up the pieces of his life.
Have you ever accidentally taken the wrong road or path and found yourself in danger and desperate to get out!?! We did once. We were going on a vacation trip. We went through the Amish country in Pennsylvania and then, using a map, went on to Philadelphia. We had the idea that we could stay there a couple of days and see the historical areas. We are big into history. Anyway, somehow, we took the wrong road into Philadelphia and we came in through I guess what you would call slums. I had seen places like this on TV but here it was in reality! Abandoned buildings, stripped cars, graffiti on everything, trash everywhere. We passed by a block of something that had high brick walls, razor wire on the top of the brick walls. All the windows of the multistory building had been boarded up. I told Stan, "That must be an old jail or prison". When we got to the entrance, it was a SCHOOL!
This young man put himself in harm's way by taking the path or road to temptation. Maybe he was stupid enough to think it would be fun. Maybe he thought he could take care of himself. Maybe he thought he was flirting with danger and found it exciting.
Bad things happen in life. It's a guarantee you will have bad things, hard things, devastating things that come up in your life out of the blue. You can't help it. You didn't ask for it. You weren't walking on the edge or begging for it. It just happens. It comes from sinful people in a fallen world where death is the result. Sickness, death, financial hardship, loss are some of the things you will experience even if you make all the right decisions. There is no sense in asking for more trouble by making senseless decisions. You will have enough in life to deal with without adding more to your plate by your own senseless decisions and at your own hand.
You don't want to be the one that someone else uses as a bad example to teach their wayward children. That's what is happening here. A father is telling his son about a young man who makes some bad choices. This young man is a bad example. The father is using the bad example to try to keep his son from making the same mistakes. You don't want someone, one day, to point at you saying, "Don't be like that man/woman over there".
- Have you ever made a bad decision that got you in trouble? (All of us have at one time or another.) Ponder on that, journal about it. Why did you make that choice? What were the results? Have you given it to God and allowed Him to redeem it and turn it into good?
- Have you grown up yet? Are you making good decisions and choices? Have you got life experience, good commonsense and godly wisdom working in your life? Are you making the same bad choices over and over again? If you are, what is going on in your head that you keep making wrong decisions? You need to go to God in deep prayer and ask Him to reveal to you the root problems. Ask Him to heal and deliver you from the cause. All of us have weaknesses towards certain sins. You are no different than me, or I, than you. God calls us to fight these tendencies in ourselves and with His help! He gives us His Word and the Holy Spirit to live within us, to help train, teach and empower us to be overcomers. He also forgives us every time we repent. He loves us with the love of a Father and He has provided for us. We have to take hold of these weapons and walk in freedom from these besetting sins. When we fail, we can go to Him and He helps us back up, cleanses us, equips us and we go on. We can only find freedom through Christ and with God's help. There is no other way. And if we continue to cling to Him and trust His forgiveness and strength, we will be saved and we can even walk in freedom from the bondage of sin now. If you have made bad decisions over and over again and find yourself in bondage to some sin, fight it with God's help. You can't do it alone. Go to Him every time. Ask Him to show you the root cause and to deliver and heal you. Ask Him to help you break the habits you have formed around this sin. Ask Him to forgive you every time you fail. Ask Him for wisdom and knowledge to help you. Ask Him for revelation from the Word to pierce your heart and apply healing to the secret places. Ask Him for the strength, weapons and power to fight the battle everyday. Go to Him with all your heartaches and your failures, all you questions and doubts.
- Are you teaching your children godly wisdom? We naturally love our children and want to parent them in the best way. Each child is unique and requires different handling. But there are basic parenting skills taught in the Bible if we will look for it. For instance, these passages in Proverbs are actually written by a father teaching his son. So be proficient in the Bible. Read it through from cover to cover at least once in your life. But don't stop there. Study it with the help of all the resources that we have at our fingertips. Bibles, study Bibles, Bible dictionaries and encyclopedias, topical indexes, maps, timelines, commentaries, scripture cross references, and how-to books on all subjects. There is also the wealth of knowledge in trained preachers and teachers at local churches. There are seminars, Bible studies, podcasts, radio programs, the Internet, etc. If you can't afford a book, go to your local library and check them out for free. In America, there is no excuse for not knowing the Word!
- Now, let's go a little deeper. Isn't satan the one who is really tempting this young man? We know it's a promiscuous woman but satan is using her like a tool to snag this stupid young man. Satan is the one trying to destroy his life. The woman is just a worm on a hook held by the fisherman, satan. The naive and senseless young man takes the bait without seeing the hook. Can you meditate on that and write out your thoughts?
For all my studies on Proverbs click HERE.