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Proverbs 30:1-4 (AMP): 1The words of Agur son of Jakeh of Massa: The man says to Ithiel, to Ithiel and

to Ucal: 2 Surely I am too brutish and stupid to be called a man, and I have not the understanding of a man (for all my secular learning is as nothing). 3 I have not learned skillful and godly Wisdom, that I should have the knowledge or burden of the Holy One. 4 Who has ascended into heaven and descended? Who has gathered the wind in His fists? Who has bound the waters in His garment? Who has established all the ends of the earth? What is His name, and what is His Son's name, if you know? Chapter 30 was not written by Solomon, but by Agur. Solomon, respecting Agurs observations, may have included them in his book, or Hezekiahs scribes might have done so two centuries later. However the words of Agur came to be added to Solomons proverbs, and we know that they were written and included by the Holy Spirits inspiration. Verses 1-3 Little is known of Agur. This chapter records his words to Ithiel and Ucal, who had evidently come to him to learn wisdom. In response, Agur humbled himself. Rather than boast of being a great man of learning, he confessed his ignorance; knowing that all he had learned of God was nothing compared to what there was to know. His confession brings to mind Elihus words in the Book of Job. Like Agur, Elihu, was able to correctly assess his own knowledge. These men humbly regarded their own understanding and secular education as nothing, and acknowledged the incomparable greatness of Gods wisdom. Elihu knew that neither having great authority nor old age guarantees that a man has good judgment or wisdom, because truth and understanding come from God (Job 32:8-9). Verse 4 Agur asks five rhetorical questions that reveal his faith. He describes God as having gathered the wind in His fists, having bound the waters in His garments and having established the ends of the earth. This reveals the wisdom and power of God, the Ruler of all! In Agurs day, the answer to his first and fifth questions was still hidden. The answer to them both, What is His Sons name, if you know? and Who hath ascended up into heaven, or descended? is Jesus Christ (1 John 3:13-15). When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men. (Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth? He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things) And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven (Ephesians 4:810,13). When Jesus died on the cross for the sins of all mankind, He then was in the grave and hell (or Sheol; the place of the dead), for three days and three nights, before he ascended to heaven. He took all those who were held captive in paradise with Him to heaven above. (Those Old Testament saints who walked in faith were kept in paradise until Jesus paid the price for their sins on the cross. Paradise was a compartment in the lower regions of hell. He seeing this before spake of the resurrection of Christ, that his soul was not left in hell, neither his flesh did see corruption. This Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses. Therefore being by the right hand of God exalted, and having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Ghost, he hath shed forth this, which ye now see and hear (Acts 2:31-33). Jesus led captivity captive, which was to lead them out of that place into heaven with Him, after He rose from the dead.) Jesus death, burial and resurrection made a way for all since then who repent and believe in Christ to follow Him to heaven also. Agurs questions, written hundreds of years before Christ, foreshadowed this fuller revelation of God. They were indeed prophetic questions!

Proverbs 30:5-6 (KJV): 5 Every word of God is pure: he is a shield unto them that put their trust in him. 6 Add thou not unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar. Verse 5 Having begun his instruction with a confession of his own limited knowledge and of Gods infinite power and wisdom, Agur turns our attention to Gods Word. The Bible tells us that all Scripture came by the inspiration of God and it is the guide by which we are to live. His Word is pure, and we can confidently trust it. Many Christians quote famous mens sayings, but could gain more by quoting the Word of God. If we do not study the Bible (2 Timothy 2:15), we will end up learning Gods ways the hard way, through the pain of trial and error. However, if we apply Gods Word to our lives, He will be a shield for us. We can always trust God: God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good? (Numbers 23:19). Verse 6 Having made his pupils aware of the value of knowing Gods Word, Agur warned them not to add anything to it. The Holy Spirit also spoke a similar warning through Moses: What thing soever I command you, observe to do it: thou shalt not add thereto, nor diminish from it (Deuteronomy 12:32). Gods Word is extremely important to Him, and He gives a stern warning not to tamper with it. Through the Apostle John, the Holy Spirit warned us again: For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book (Revelation 22:18-19). We must be careful neither to add to Gods Word, nor to seek wisdom beyond what He has revealed. We also should not focus just on certain parts of Scripture and ignore other parts, but read and study the entire Bible.

7 Two things have I required of thee; deny me them not before I die: 8 Remove far from me vanity and lies: give me neither poverty nor riches; feed me with food convenient for me. 9 Lest I be full, and deny thee, and say, Who is the LORD? or lest I be poor, and steal, and take the name of my God in vai We have already seen that Agur began teaching Ithiel and Ucal by confessing his own limitations, by rhetorical questions, and by statements of faith. He next instructed them by praying. The cry of Agurs heart demonstrates the kind of prayer that pleases God. Desiring a pure heart, he asked God to remove from him all falsehood and lies. Falsehood includes conformity to anything that is not true, such as false beliefs, ideas, or suppositions. Behold, thou desirest truth in the inward parts: and in the hidden part thou shalt make me to know wisdom (Psalm 51:6). His prayer revealed the importance of desiring to know and conform to the truth that one might not sin against God. Next, Agur asked God to supply his needs in such a way as would make him neither rich nor poor. His prayer taught his disciples to ask for their needful bread, much as Jesus taught His disciples to ask for their daily bread. It taught

them that certain temptations come with both wealth and poverty, and to ask not to be led into those temptations that they might avoid sin and honor God. Being full, whether of food or pleasures, can easily cause one to forget God, and become distracted with pleasure and things. It also causes men to trust and find their security in money instead of God. The greatest danger in poverty is desperation. Poverty hangs over people like a black cloud, causing fear, self-pity, discouragement, hopelessness, and depression. The desperate are tempted to resort to such things as stealing, gambling, lying, peddling drugs, or prostitution to survive. Agur saw the ways in which both poverty and riches tempt one to turn from God. The Apostle Paul found that through the Spirit he could overcome those temptations; that he could do all things through Christ and be content, whether enduring need for the sake of the Gospel, or enjoying abundance. Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me (Philippians 4:11-13). He learned to rely on God to meet his every need. God desires that we also learn to trust Him in all things. Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you (Matthew 6:31-33).

Proverbs 30:10 (KJV): Accuse not a servant unto his master, lest he curse thee, and thou be found guilty.

Agur used confession, rhetorical questions, statements, and prayer to instruct Ithiel and Ucal. The remainder of his instruction was given in the form of proverbs, beginning with todays verse, which warns against accusing a servant to his master. In Agurs time, it was common practice to treat servants inhumanely. Ungodly masters often acted on the word of their social equals, so as not to insult them. If a mans friend or acquaintance accused his servant of wrong, the wicked master often had his servant beaten or even executed. Servants had no rights, even when innocent. Even light punishment brought great hardship. Agur understood that God upholds justice for all of His people, whatever their position, and holds all accountable that needlessly stir up trouble, especially out of pride or spite. It is never good to speak ill of those in lowly positions to their employers or supervisors. Many such people are struggling to make a living. Undue criticism might deprive them of desperately needed jobs or raises. It is wicked to cause others needless suffering because of our own our pride, or because we are impatient or in a bad mood.

Christian employers should protect trusted workers from abuse and never accept unproven accusations against them. Customers often become unnecessarily impatient regarding service or disgruntled about merchandise. Instead of discussing a problem civilly, some customers berate the employee who is trying to help them, then demand to speak to a supervisor to accuse the employee of wrongdoing. In many cases, the supervisor finds his employee is not at fault, but that the customer is guilty of a bad attitude. God is the creator of all mankind: each life is important to Him, and He is no respecter of men. He looks on peoples hearts, not their outward appearance or accomplishments. All who are born into Gods family through Christ become brothers and sisters in Him. We are to honor each other, as well as all others; regardless of their class, race, position, age, or sex. Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another (Romans 12:10). We are to especially honor elders at church and widows (1 Timothy 5:1-3, 17); our employers and supervisors (or masters: 1 Timothy 6:1-2); our parents (Matthew 19:19), and people in authority (Romans 13:1-7). Above all, we must honor God Himself. One way in which we honor Him is by obeying His Word. Now unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen (1 Timothy 1:17).

11 There is a generation that curseth their father, and doth not bless their mother. 12 There is a generation that are pure in their own eyes, and yet is not washed from their filthiness. 13 There is a generation, O how lofty are their eyes! and their eyelids are lifted up. 14 There is a generation, whose teeth are as swords, and their jaw teeth as knives, to devour the poor from off the earth, and the needy from among men.

hese verses describe a generation so wicked that they curse their own parents; and so prideful that they do not see their own wickedness. Verses 11-14 Verse 1 describes Agurs words as prophecy. I believe it may not only have spoken of an evil generation in Agurs time, but also point to the generation that will exist before the second coming of the Lord Jesus. The Apostle Paul also describes this generation in 2 Timothy 3:1-5: This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away. Agurs words describe a generation that curses their parents; Paul states that in the last days people will be disobedient to their parents. Agur describes a generation that is prideful and sinless in their own eyes; Paul speaks of a people being haughty and having only a form of godliness. Agur speaks about a generation that takes advantage of the poor, while James 5:1-5 speaks of men who heap up riches for the last days at the expense of those who labor for them, by paying them inadequate wages. Wherefore as the Holy Ghost saith, To day if ye will hear his voice, Harden not your hearts, as in the provocation, in the day of temptation in the wilderness: When your fathers tempted me, proved me, and

saw my works forty years. Wherefore I was grieved with that generation, and said, They do alway err in their heart; and they have not known my ways. So I sware in my wrath, They shall not enter into my rest (Hebrews 3:7-11).

15 The horse leach hath two daughters, crying, Give, give. There are three things that are never satisfied, yea, four things say not, It is enough: 16 The grave; and the barren womb; the earth that is not filled with water; and the fire that saith not, It is enough. To introduce four things that are never satisfied, Agur described the leech; a blood-sucking worm. It feeds through two suckers, one at each end of its body, thus the depiction of two daughters clamoring for blood. Horse leeches live in well water and spring water. As animals and humans drink, tiny leeches enter their mouths and attach themselves inside the throat or similar places. Feeding on their hosts blood, they grow rapidly and can cause bleeding, obstruction, and even death. The leech presents a vivid picture of human parasites. They enrich themselves by draining others, and giving nothing but trouble in return. Like the leech, the following four things are never satisfied: The Grave or Sheol: It takes countless souls every day but is never full. Therefore hell hath enlarged herself, and opened her mouth without measure: and their glory, and their multitude, and their pomp, and he that rejoiceth, shall descend into it (Isaiah 5:14). The Barren Womb: The affects of sin upon humanity rob some women of the ability to conceive. It is heartbreaking for a woman yearning to have a child to be unable to conceive. She is never satisfied and tries every method possible to become pregnant. Gods promise and power can break the curse of a barren womb (Deuteronomy 7:13). Whoever follows Christ has Gods blessing, including the ability to conceive. My husband and I have seen many women able to become pregnant after being prayed for. The Earth: It is never satisfied with water. No matter how much rain falls, the earth will become dry and need more. Drought is a curse. Israel was warned that if they turned from the living God to idols, the earth would suffer for it (Deuteronomy 11:13-17). Fire: Its very life depends upon consuming everything that it touches. It is devastating to view the aftermath of a fire. At the time of this writing,Arizona has endured its worst drought in over a hundred years, and many fires have ravaged the land. When driving by these areas it is sad to see mile after mile of charred timber that had once been a green forest. It is far sadder, however, to see peoples lives ravaged and destroyed by sin. Like fire, sin is never satisfied, but consumes more and more of a persons soul and life. God has promised to provide for all our needs. He entreats us to trust in Him. Let your character or moral disposition be free from love of money [including greed, avarice, lust, and craving for earthly possessions] and be satisfied with your

present circumstances and with what you have; for He [God] Himself has said, I will not in any way fail you nor give you up nor leave you without support. [I will] not, [I will] not, [I will] not in any degree leave you helpless nor forsake nor let [you] down (relax My hold on you)! [Assuredly not!] (Hebrews 13:5 AMP).

Proverbs 30:17 (KJV): The eye that mocketh at his father, and despiseth to obey his mother, the ravens of the valley shall pick it out, and the young eagles shall eat it.

The penalty for mocking and scorning ones parents was grim in the Old Testament. It carried the death penalty. The Israelites were careful to bury their dead. A body left unburied for birds to feed upon indicated an ignoble death, such as by violence or execution. Vultures picking an eye out of a dead body is what Agur seemed to be referring to as the end result of dishonoring ones parents; for such a sin leads to other sins, exposing one to all the dangers of an evil life. Implicit in this proverb is the truth that though one may escape the punishment of man for dishonoring ones parents, one will not escape Gods. The Bible stresses that children are to respect their parents. It is so important to God, that He made it one of the Ten Commandments: Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee (Exodus 20:12). God gave other laws that charged Israel to deal very strongly with rebellious children in the Old Testament. The penalty for striking or cursing ones parents had the same penalty as for adultery or murder; the guilty party was to be stoned to death. And he that smiteth his father, or his mother, shall be surely put to death. ...And he that curseth his father, or his mother, shall surely be put to death (Exodus 21:15,17). It was a serious offense before God. The word for curseth in Hebrew is qlal, meaning to bring into contempt, curse, despise.[1] Belittling or mocking ones parents is a serious offence to God. Even if there is nothing about them that commands respect, we must refrain from speaking reviling words against them. Children with unholy parents should pray for them and ask God to change them. This is especially important for young people to understand. We are to bless our parents and speak respectfully to them and of them. Praise God, that under the New Testament law, children can find mercy and forgiveness if they have been rebellious to their parents. Spiritually dishonoring parents can result in spiritual blindness and even spiritual death unless rebellious children repent. The Old Testament law often sounds extreme to our modern ears because our culture is so lenient about rebellion and even glamorizes it. It would help society to better enforce punishment for crimes that are directed against those in positions of authority. These punishments would be an example to cause those bent on evil to fear and respect the laws. It would work for everyones good, especially the young. Those who honor their parents and elders seldom come to the evil end that Agur depicted.

Proverbs 30:18-19 (KJV): 18 There be three things which are too wonderful for me, yea, four which I know not: 19 The way of an eagle in the air; the way of a serpent upon a rock; the way of a ship in the midst of the sea; and the way of a man with a maid.

Verses 18-20 These verses state that there are four things which are very wonderful, and yet mysterious: how an eagle flies; how a serpent slithers; how a ship sails; and how a man and woman are attracted to one another. Solomon respected these observations by Agur and included them in his own book. We all wonder at times why things are the way they are. The only and final answer is that God created them to act this way. Gods creation is truly amazing and we can learn many things by observing it. Verse 19 - The Eagle: This bird mounts up on thermal air currents to soar at amazing heights. It must have puzzled the ancients to watch them ascend, barely flapping their wings. They are not afraid of storms, which create the best wind currentsthey fly high above them. The eagle is a symbol of overcoming Christians who rise above lifes storms by waiting upon the Lord. But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles... (Isaiah 40:31a). This is one of my favorite verses. I have claimed it many times, when I have been so weary that I did not think I could not go on. The Lord has never failed to give me the strength that I have needed, when I ask Him in faith to help me. This scripture states that those who wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. What does it mean to wait upon the Lord? Certainly, the first application of this would be to wait upon the Lords timing, and to wait for Him to show us what to do; however, there is also another application to the meaning. When we dine in a restaurant, a waiter comes to our table to serve us or wait on us. When we are committed to serving God, then we are waiting on Him; therefore, we will be given the strength for the task He has given us to do. Even young men who do not know the Lord, will not have the strength that we are given, when we obey Christs commands. The Serpent: A snakes bones, muscles, and plates on the skin of its belly enable it to move on land without limbs. From Genesis 3 we find that the serpent did not always slither, but was originally created to walk as a beast. After its part in tempting Adam and Eve to sin, God reduced it to crawling on its belly, eating dust (Genesis 3:14-15). The devil, called the serpent, preys on men who were made of dust and crawl in the dirt of sin until they are born again and then the Lord causes them to rise up spiritually and fly like eagles. A Sailing Ship: The third thing that Agur mentions that amazed him is how a ship can sail in the ocean. There are physical laws that God set in motion in the earth that govern all things. These are verifiable scientific laws. In the case of a ship floating in the ocean, the laws that affect it are: the law of gravity; the law of motion; the laws of nature; and the laws of the universe. Just looking at the size

and weight of a boat (especially when we see warships constructed from mega tons of steel) floating in a liquid like water, it looks impossible. However, when one understands the invisible laws that govern such a feat, then it becomes possible. In the Bible, we are asked to believe in spiritual things and things we cannot see; yet, we know they are real, because we understand the law of faith and the law of life in Christ Jesus (Matthew 19:26). A Man With A Maid: The fourth thing that was too wonderful for Agur was the way of a man with a maid. The way a man and woman are attracted to one another and fall in love is a very wonderful gift that God gave to men and women. Erotic and sexual love was designed by God, but it has limits and boundaries attached to it. It is to only be entered into within the bonds of matrimony. The devil has come against this husband and wife relationship by perverting it and causing men to indulge in it illegally. We find adulterers, fornicators, and homosexuals, (where men are sexually attracted to men, and women to women.) God is the one who set the standard for a marriage relationship and when men start trying to redefine marriage, they are setting themselves up to take the place of God, which is idolatry. The beautiful relationship, of love and marriage, between a man and a woman, is a type of our relationship with Christ; and that is a very holy thing (Ephesians 5:23-27). 20 Such is the way of an adulterous woman; she eateth, and wipeth her mouth, and saith, I have done no wickedness. 21 For three things the earth is disquieted, and for four which it cannot bear: 22 For a servant when he reigneth; and a fool when he is filled with meat; 23 For an odious woman when she is married; and an handmaid that is heir to her mistress. Verses 20-23 These verses describe an array of people who are types of rebellious sinners that cause trouble for others. An Adulterous Woman: This woman simply does what she does, in the same way a person would eat a meal and wipe his mouth after they finish. She is so hardened, she feels no guilt and claims she has done no wrong. The Bible tells us that we are all sinners in need of a Savior, and that we must confess our sins and ask God to forgive us; only then can we be cleansed (1 John 1:8-10). A Servant When He Reigns: People suffer when a servant who is not trained for the office of a king obtains that position. A Rebellious Fool When He Is Prosperous: The Hebrew word for fool in this verse indicates a vile, ungodly person who rejects Gods Word. Only the rich in ancient times had an abundance of food; thus filled with meat indicates prosperity. An ungodly person uses position and money selfishly and often for evil purposes. Nabal, (1 Samuel 25:2-38) and modern-day mobsters are

examples of this kind of fool. An Odious Woman who Marries: A bitter woman of hateful characteristics can cause much trouble and make life unpleasant for her family and others. Marriage tends to give a woman a degree of authority and respectability, increasing the pride of a woman with bad character. The Bible instructs women not to become busybodies. And withal they learn to be idle, wandering about from house to house; and not only idle, but tattlers also and busybodies, speaking things which they ought not. I will therefore that the younger women marry, bear children, guide the house, give none occasion to the adversary to speak reproachfully. For some are already turned aside after Satan (1 Timothy 5:13-15). A Servant who Is Heir To Her Mistress: There have been instances throughout history of maids persuading mistresses to make them heirs of their possessions, or servant girls who displace mistresses in the affections of their husbands. When servile, mean-spirited people come into a position of power, however slight, they are prone to become proud and use whatever advantage they can to promote themselves. Each situation is bad enough in itself, but if all of these were true in the life of one person, it would be unbearable. If the servant who reigned was a bitter, adulterous woman, who was also a prosperous rebel and had gained her position by displacing her mistress, this would be an unbearable combination. God calls us to be holy, whatever our position or status (1 Peter 3:3-5).

Proverbs 30:24-28 (KJV): 24 There be four things which are little upon the earth, but they are exceeding wise: 25 The ants are a people not strong, yet they prepare their meat in the summer; 26 The conies are but a feeble folk, yet make they their houses in the rocks; 27 The locusts have no king, yet go they forth all of them by bands; 28 The spider taketh hold with her hands, and is in kings' palaces.

Verses 24-28 Agur continued teaching through observations of nature. The following creatures are described as small, and yet possessing a unique wisdom that gives them a great advantage: The Ant: This tiny creature is applauded for its industry. During summer, it stores food for the long winter months. We all face difficult times when we need a reserve of money to fall back on. Today we call it saving for a rainy day. Saving prudently is not the same as hoarding. Hoarding has a fear and greed element, while preparing for the future is wise. By Gods direction, Joseph stored up grain in Egypt during seven years of bounty in order to feed Egypt and other nations during seven years of famine (Genesis 41).

The Coney: Although scholars are uncertain which animal is meant by the Hebrew for coney, we may assume that it was a small rabbit-like and vulnerable animal. However, it achieved safety because it made its home in rocky fortresses. Larger animals could not navigate in the rocks as well as open ground; nor could they uncover its rocky home. We can learn from this animal by making our homes secure before we purchase other things. Many people take secondary loans against their houses instead of paying off the mortgage. This is unwise, as a mortgagefree house provides security in difficult times. The Locust: Locusts are considered to be wise also. Although they have no king or ruler, they join together in organized ranks when they attack an area. They can fly for miles, often all day, landing in the evening to form camps. As they advance, they strip the land of every growing thing. Christians could well learn from this. If we banded together on major issues that are coming against our Christian principles and rights, we could ravage the enemy, even as the locusts ravage a field when they attack. Each one devours the foliage directly around them, and as they all go forward, soon there is nothing left in the field. If every Christian attacked the field of evil in their area, we could win the entire battle that the devil has assailed against us. The Spider: Not even a king can keep spiders out of his palace. It is able to climb quickly to high places or find hidden low places, wisely avoiding open areas. Like the spider, we would be wise to be discreet in our affairs. Careless boasting and parading ourselves, invites a fall. King Hezekiah was rebuked by the prophet Isaiah for displaying his treasures to the envoys of Babylon. Those same treasures were carried off 250 years later by the very nation to whom he displayed them (2 Kings 20:12-17). Wisdom compensates for the smallest creatures, giving them protection and great power. I believe this list of creatures is included in Proverbs so that we can learn to be as resourceful as they are in many practical areas of life. 29 There be three things which go well, yea, four are comely in going: 30 A lion which is strongest among beasts, and turneth not away for any; 31 A greyhound; an he goat also; and a king, against whom there is no rising up. Verses 29-31 Agur described four things that are stately in their walk; from these observations we can gain spiritual truths. The Lion: The lion is called the king of the beasts, but it is not strength alone that causes it to stride in majestic confidence. He is fearless, turning away from no beast. We too, can be strong and unafraid if we walk with God, and claim His strength and His confidence. Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil (Ephesians 6:10-11). We are to be strong in

the Lord and the power of His might, not our own. When we put on our spiritual armor, the enemys fiery darts cannot harm us. We must not fear what man can do, for God is greater than any man (Psalm 56:11). If we pray for the people the devil is using against us, and take authority over those powers in the name of Jesus, then the devil will have to cease his attacks against them and us. We are not to fear what man can do to us, as God is greater than any man. The Greyhound: Graceful in its walk, the greyhound can out-run pursuer or prey. It is needful to be swift about some things in life, while slow about others. We ought to be swift to repent, swift to forgive, swift to obey Gods voice, swift to do good. Scripture tells us to be swift to hear, but slow to speak and slow to become angry (James 1:19-20). Someone has said that God gave us two ears and only one mouth, so we should listen twice as much as we speak. The He-Goat: The mountain goat majestically climbs high into the mountains and leaps upon their steep, rocky slopes. Confident and unafraid of falling, goats are uncannily surefooted. There are many mountains to conquer in life. We can become surefooted and confident in our walk of faith by applying Biblical truths to our lives. Then we will not fear the mountains of difficulties which we must overcome. We can trust the Lord to give us spiritual hinds feet, for deer are surefooted like the goats. He maketh my feet like hinds feet, and setteth me upon my high places. He teacheth my hands to war, so that a bow of steel is broken by mine arms (Psalm 18:33-34). A King: The last example talks about a king who has a kingdom at peace. It is quite a picture to see a military processional parade down a street for review. The king, dressed in his finest, rides on the lead horse who is girded up for the occasion. Backed by his finest men, he rides forth in great confidence, since their are no uprisings against him that he must deal with at the present time. He is stately in appearance, as the other animals mentioned in these verses are. We can also be as this rider, when we allow the Holy Spirit to work His confidence and demeanor in us. We can have confidence in Him when we pray, knowing that if we ask anything of Him that is His will for us, we will receive it (1 John 5:1415). 32 If thou hast done foolishly in lifting up thyself, or if thou hast thought evil, lay thine hand upon thy mouth. 33 Surely the churning of milk bringeth forth butter, and the wringing of the nose bringeth forth blood: so the forcing of wrath bringeth forth strife. Verse 32 Agurs teaching began by confessing his knowledge to be nothing as compared to Gods and ended with a warning against pride and self-exaltation. The Bible reveals the consequences of pride that many people, such as King Saul, faced. When no longer little in his own eyes (1 Samuel 15:17), Saul tried to cloak his rebellion with partial obedience. He made a show of obeying God by going against the Amalekites, but ultimately rejected the word of the Lord. God said to kill every single Amalekite, but Saul killed all but the king. Gods word was to destroy everything they owned but Saul destroyed only what was worthless and

kept what was good. Obedience is doing all of what we are told to do. We are not to change instructions because we think we know better. Sauls disobedience was rooted in pride. Like Satan, he thought his way was better than Gods. He claimed that he kept the animals to offer as sacrifices to the Lord, as if offering what he had gained sinfully would not also be a sin. Because of his rebellion, Saul later lost both his throne and life. And Samuel said, Hath the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams. For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, he hath also rejected thee from being king (1 Samuel 15:22-23). Verse 33 - Agur compared forcing anger to the churning of milk or violently twisting someones nose. As surely as the one produces butter and the other produces blood; someone who forces an issue will stir up trouble. My husband, Bud, used to run a ranch. He recalls a time when he warned the ranch hands about the way to avoid situations that would cause trouble. He told them, You cowboys can walk through that cow pen and get to the other side and you wont smell a thing, but if you take a stick and stir up the manure while you walk through the pen, its gonna stink. This Proverb gives the same advice: just walk on by when there is trouble brewing, or you could cause a stink. A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger. The tongue of the wise useth knowledge aright: but the mouth of fools poureth out foolishness (Proverbs 15:1-2). Agur responded to Ithiel and Ucal (Proverbs 30:1) with different forms of instruction. In a sense, we are all teachers. Others, (especially children, new believers, and unbelievers) learn from how we speak, the questions we ask, what we do, how we use Gods Word, and the way we pray, even more than from what we may consciously teach.

Proverbs 30:2
Surely I am more brutish than any man, and have not the understanding of a man.
The fastest way to wisdom is to be a fool, for God resists the proud and gives grace to the lowly (I Cor 3:18-20; James 4:6,10). The fastest way to folly is to think yourself wise, for God will destroy the proud (Pr 26:12; Isaiah 5:21; Rom 1:20-25; I Cor 1:19-21; Gal 6:3). Here are inspired words of Agur (Pr 30:1), revealing his poor spirit and humble character at teaching Ithiel and Ucal. Note his use of "surely" to strengthen his admission. Brutish. Of or pertaining to the brutes, or lower animals, as opposed to man. In want of intelligence or in failure to use reason: dull, irrational, uncultured, stupid.

He opens instruction to his students by claiming to be more ignorant than any man, like a brute beast; and there is no false humility here, for he speaks by prophetic inspiration. Solomon showed the same humility; when offered anything by the LORD, he admitted he was but a child and asked for wisdom (I Kings 3:5-9). And this humble spirit before God brought him very great blessings of understanding and much more (I Kgs 3:10-13). And Agur and Solomon are not alone, for we see this very same spirit also in Moses (Num 12:3), Elihu (Job 32:6-7), David (I Sam 18:23; Ps 131:1), Asaph (Ps 73:21-22), Jeremiah (Jer 1:6), Daniel (Dan 2:30), Amos (Amos 7:14-15), and Paul (Eph 3:8). Dear reader, do you see a pattern? Great men of God do not claim to be wise, for their secret to success lies in their complete humility before their Creator and Lord. And this is God's order for things (Rom 12:16), as this brings Him the greater glory (I Cor 1:27). The God of heaven looks unto the man poor in spirit and with a contrite heart (Is 66:1-2). God will bless the poor in spirit with riches of wisdom and other spiritual blessings (Matt 5:3; Luke 6:24). The man who says, "I do not know what to do," may stand still and see God work for him (II Chron 20:12,17). Go to Him this way today and become wise! None of us know as we ought to know (I Cor 8:2); but we respond with confidence when confronting enemies of truth (Job 33:1-3; 36:1-4; Luke 1:3; I Cor 14:20; II Tim 3:17). Has there ever been any meeker than our Lord Jesus? Never! He was lowly in heart, forbid promotional efforts, and never raised his voice in the street (Matt 11:29; 12:15-20).

Proverbs 30:3
I neither learned wisdom, nor have the knowledge of the holy.
"Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding" (Pr 4:7). The loftiest goal for life is wisdom. The highest development of the human race is realized in the few men and women to whom God gives wisdom. The proverb before you obscurely presents the basic prerequisite in order to obtain wisdom. Not convinced? "She is more precious than rubies: and all the things thou canst desire are not to be compared unto her. Length of days is in her right hand; and in her left hand riches and honour. Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace. She is a tree of life to them that lay hold upon her: and happy is every one that retaineth her" (Pr 3:15-18). Very great value, long life, riches, honor, pleasure, peace, life, and happiness should convince you! What else could you possibly desire! Not convinced? "How much better is it to get wisdom than gold! and to get understanding rather to be chosen than silver" (Pr 16:16)! "For wisdom is better than rubies; and all the things that may be desired are not to be compared to it" (Pr 8:11). "For wisdom is a defence, and money is a defence: but the excellency of knowledge is, that wisdom giveth life to them that have it" (Ec 7:12). Only hopeless fools seek money over wisdom. Now everyone wants to be wise! They want others to come knocking for answers to life's problems. But only a select few will pursue wisdom according to Heaven's rules. Only the select few will obtain it. Wisdom starts by believing and admitting you know nothing at all. Such a man, to whom God gives humility, will be a great man (I Cor 3:18-20). Wisdom is only for a select few - those who admit they know nothing at all. Too hard to admit, reader? Do not worry! You are with the great majority rushing through the wide gate to travel down the broad way to folly and destruction. Only a few use the grace of God to humble themselves to become truly

wise and fulfill the highest calling in life. If a man holds self-confidence or lofty thoughts about himself, the blessed God will bring him down to a blithering idiot, where he was all along, but just did not realize it. Humility is the recognition of sober and important truth - you are nothing, and the Most High God is everything. Here is where you must start your pursuit of wisdom and greatness. This proverb has the words of one of the wisest men ever - inspired words of greatness! Covet these words and the heart-felt conviction behind them. Strip your soul of self-confidence until you believe these words about yourself. Become a fool! The more ignorant the better! The lower you honestly put yourself, the higher God will lift you. Humility is the key to open the treasure vaults of Heaven for wisdom. If you do not abase and humble yourself before God and men, you will never even find crumbs of wisdom. You will waste your ridiculous life inhaling the fumes of human idiocy, which will anesthetize you for your descent into the blackness of darkness forever (Pr 26:12). Consider your great wisdom. You arrived dirtying yourself. It took you four years to color inside the lines, seven to ride a bike, sixteen to drive a car, twenty-one to be trusted with wine, forty to realize you are mortal, sixty to know you wasted your life, and eighty to fear what is next. You will leave dirtying yourself. You will meet an angry God unprepared. And you think you are wise? It would have been better to not be born! Reader, get down! Now! Desecrate yourself! Defile your opinions! Curse your confidence! Damn your thoughts! Flush your intelligence! Memorize this proverb and repeat it to God and all men. It is your only hope. Beg the blessed God for mercy! The LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God (Ex 34:14). "God is jealous, and the LORD revengeth; the LORD revengeth, and is furious; the LORD will take vengeance on his adversaries, and he reserveth wrath for his enemies" (Nah 1:2). He hates your love of yourself; He hates your haughty arrogance and high opinions; He will bring you down! Any difference between you and others was by His choice. Anything you have, which is nothing but vanity, was given to you by God Himself. Why do you think and speak about it as if you chose or earned it (Pr 25:27; I Cor 4:7)? Get down! Think soberly about yourself! Do not think so highly of yourself (Rom 12:3; Gal 6:3; II Cor 10:12). David said, "LORD, my heart is not haughty, nor mine eyes lofty: neither do I exercise myself in great matters, or in things too high for me" (Ps 131:1). The man after God's heart, with glorious achievements and universal acclaim, denounced his own wisdom. So God gave him true wisdom in abundance (I Sam 18:5,14-15,30; II Sam 14:20). Solomon said, "I am but a little child: I know not how to go out or come in." He actually was a twentyyear-old genetic specimen with the best training and counselors the world could offer. But he knew the truth - he was an idiot in all matters of importance, due to the blinding and damning control of sin on his heart (Is 44:20; Jer 17:9). Therefore, humility is truly the principal thing! For wise Agur began teaching wisdom by declaring his total ignorance! See the comments on 30:2. The key to obtaining wisdom is humility - the rejection of all your wisdom and total acceptance of all God's instruction. The way in which you receive instruction from others is the greatest single indicator of how successful your life will be (Pr 15:31-32). Examine yourself. How do you measure up? If you lean to your own understanding at all, you will be cut off from even crumbs. If you tear down all high thoughts and prostrate yourself before God, He will pour out a liberal blessing of wisdom to you. True wisdom is simply rejecting all opinions - including your own - to dedicate yourself to His Word (Pr 3:5-6; Ps 119:128; Is 8:20; II Tim 3:16-17). Here is a great man in the earth - the man who can humble himself as a little child (Matt 18:1-4). God will fight against any man who does not do this (James 4:6). Before the Lord Jesus Christ, this

humbling of yourself ought to be easy. Say sincerely with John the Baptist, the greatest born of women, "He must increase, but I must decrease" (John 3:30).

Proverbs 30:4
Who hath ascended up into heaven, or descended? who hath gathered the wind in his fists? who hath bound the waters in a garment? who hath established all the ends of the earth? what is his name, and what is his son's name, if thou canst tell?
Who can find out wisdom? No man has! No man can! No man will! Wisdom is a matter of revelation from God. Paul said, "For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God" (I Cor 2:11). The knowledge of God and wisdom is only by inspired revelation! Proverbs 30 is an appendix to Solomon's proverbs. Agur, a wise man, taught Ithiel and Ucal (Pr 30:1). His lessons are an inspired revelation of wisdom, for they are called "the prophecy" (Pr 30:1; 31:1). He introduced his lessons by first confessing his great natural ignorance (Pr 30:2-3), then by proving man's inability to find out God and wisdom (Pr 30:4), and finally by defining the absolute necessity and sufficiency of Scripture (Pr 30:5-6). The seven rhetorical questions here are to prove that no man can find out God or wisdom by human effort. The answer to each question is an obvious negative. No man has gone to heaven, or come back, or conquered the elements to learn the ways and wisdom of God. Agur forced Ithiel and Ucal to admit by force of reason there was no man. They could not name any man who had done such a thing, and they could not name his son. Agur proceeded to teach that every inspired word of God is pure and necessary (Pr 30:5). Not a single word was to be deleted or degraded. Putting trust in God and His words was the surest defense against dangers in this world or the next. Furthermore, man's words were not to be added, for this would corrupt God's words, and He would be angry (Pr 30:6). The seven rhetorical questions are a device teaching man's inability to discover the real truth and wisdom of the universe. Since knowledge and understanding are with God, what man has ascended up into heaven to learn them, or returned back to earth to teach them? No man! Having confessed his own ignorance (Pr 30:2-3), he used these questions to condemn all men of ignorance as well (Pr 30:4). Wisdom is beyond the reach of mortal men. Consider three very similar questions. "O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out! For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been his counsellor? Or who hath first given to him, and it shall be recompensed unto him again? For of him, and through him, and to him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen" (Rom 11:33-36). The seven questions are not simply answered with "God." The first two questions are in the perfect tense, which precludes them from being a prophecy of Christ. Neither can they refer to God, for He fills heaven and earth (Jer 23:24). He had neither ascended nor descended, for He is altogether present in both places simultaneously. And what would His ascent or descent have to do with knowledge, understanding, and wisdom? Nothing!

The first two questions are also connected by the coordinating conjunction "or," which positively indicates a hypothetical alternative. Did God ascend? Or did He descend? Applying the questions to God creates confusion. The questioning is rather rhetorical about man. No man had gone to heaven to get wisdom, nor had any man come from heaven with it. Agur taught Ithiel and Ucal man's great dependence on God for wisdom. He proceeded further to humiliate man in the face of God's glorious creation. Who, like God, has the wisdom and power to control and harness the wind in his fists? No man! God proved Job's inferior wisdom and power by a consideration of the wind (Job 37:14-27). And David and Jeremiah taught the same (Ps 135:5-7; Jer 10:13; 51:16). Who, like God, has the wisdom and power to gather large amounts of water in the clouds? No man! God proved Job's inferior wisdom and power by a consideration of the water in clouds (Job 36:24-33; 37:11-24; 38:33-37). And David and Jeremiah taught the same (Ps 135:5-7; 147:7-8; Jer 10:13; 51:16). Who, like God, has the wisdom and power to establish all the ends of earth, to lay the foundation and build upon it? No man! God proved Job's inferior wisdom and power by these very considerations (Job 38:4-7). And Solomon reasoned about wisdom's great value through God's use of it to create the world and settle the mountains (Pr 8:25-26). Is there any such man? No, not one! Agur pressed further. If there is such a man, what is his son's name? They had to answer in the negative. There is neither man nor son that knows or understands these things! They are too high and wonderful for man (Ps 131:1). The seven questions are not simply answered with "God." The middle three questions are true of God, but that is not his argument. We have seen above that the first two questions create a hypothetical alternative. The last two questions create an unanswerable dilemma. What is learned by supplying "God" and "Jesus"? Nothing! Agur taught there is no man or son that has the wisdom of the blessed God, Who created all things by understanding. Man has no knowledge or wisdom of his own, and he cannot find out God's knowledge or wisdom by himself (Is 8:20). Agur knew it to be true of himself and all men, so he convinced his students by these rhetorical questions. Wisdom is a matter of revelation: God must give it by inspiration (Deut 29:29). And Agur will conclude his introduction by identifying that perfect wisdom in the inspired words of God's Holy Scriptures (Pr 30:5-6)! The wisdom of God is too high for man to reach (Job 11:5-12). Though he might look and search in many places, he will not find it by any natural means (Job 28:12-28). The wisdom of God is revealed supernaturally through inspiration, and then men have no need for trips to heaven or across the sea for it (Deut 30:11-14; Rom 10:6-8). No wonder David considered God's word so very delightful and precious (Ps 19:7-11). Those who see an allusion to eternal generation here have only found an illusion. Their desperate efforts to find support for Origen's hallucination are again found wanting. God did not yet have a son, for the Word had not yet been made flesh (Luke 1:35; John 1:14). David and Isaiah knew God's Son was future (Ps 89:19-37; Is 7:14; 9:6). As in the personification of wisdom (Pr 8:22-31), many seek mystical allusions where there are none. The rhetorical questions are nonsensical, if they are merely answered with "God." God and His name of Jehovah were well known by all three men (Pr 30:5,9). Agur did not teach Ithiel and Ucal that God had created the wind, clouds, and earth. They already knew that. He taught them that no man had wisdom even close to that of the blessed Creator God. It is our privilege and duty to see a dark saying here (Pr 1:6), not childish questioning. Since only God has the infinite wisdom implied by our proverb, it is our blessing to value and treasure every single word of His inspired Scriptures (Pr 30:5-6; Matt 4:4). Since every word is pure, we cannot take any away (Pr 30:5). And we are told not to add our words (Pr 30:6). Do not take away from them nor add to them (Deut 4:2; 12:32; Rev 22:18-19). Let us hold fast to a Bible that is word perfect and keep every precept in it (Ps 119:128).

No mortal man can ascend up to heaven, nor descend from it, to obtain wisdom. But Jesus Christ descended and then ascended to sit at God's right hand (John 3:13; Eph 4:9). He made all things by His power; by Him all things consist; and He upholds all things by the word of His power (John 1:3; Col 1:17; Heb 1:3). In Him are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge, and He has been made wisdom for you (Col 2:3; I Cor 1:30-31).