July 11th 2018 – Proverbs 15:30-33

The light of the eyes rejoices the heart,
    and good news refreshes the bones.
The ear that listens to life-giving reproof
    will dwell among the wise.
Whoever ignores instruction despises himself,
    but he who listens to reproof gains intelligence.
The fear of the Lord is instruction in wisdom,
    and humility comes before honour.

Proverbs 15:30-33

Kidner suggests that 'the light of the eyes' (30) may refer to the radiant face of a friend, and that the verse therefore speaks of the heartwarming effect that persons and facts, respectively, can bring. Translated into spiritual terms and applied to the gospel, the words light up with a profound meaning. The good news of the gospel certainly brings a light to the eyes, and in turn the radiance in the eyes of those whose hearts God has touched with salvation communicates itself to those who see it. The testimony of transformed lives is always a strong and compelling advocacy of the gospel. In 31-33 we have once again the oft-repeated emphasis on teachability. To have an ear and a heart open to reproof and wholesome admonition is itself a mark of maturity as well as being an attitude that leads to deeper maturity. In contrast, a man (like Nabal the churl, 1 Samuel 25:17) who cannot be spoken to is his own worst enemy (32) and can do himself untold harm. To be too proud to receive correction, too self-conceited to think instruction necessary, too arrogantly complacent to admit the possibility of error, is to be enclosed in a prison of one's own making - and withal puts an impossible strain upon life, for our frail and fallible mortality protests against such unnatural claims made for it, knowing that they do not fit the facts of life. To abide in the fear of the Lord is to own that it is the part of wisdom to acknowledge mistakes and faults, and so to receive admonition as coming from Him.