Proverbs 14:10-12

Proverbs 14:10‑12  •  2 min. read  •  grade level: 6
Here we begin with moral truth as to the heart, and thence come to manifested words and ways.
“The heart knoweth its own bitterness, and a stranger intermeddleth not with its joy.
The house of the wicked shall be overthrown, but the tent of the upright shall flourish.
There is a way that seemeth right to a man, but the end thereof [is] the ways of death” (vers. 10-12).
It is an evil age, the world far from God and knowing Him not; and man, its chief, chief in guilt and pride yet liable to wrongs and vexations without end. How exposed then is the heart? whatever the position, to bitterness, unknown to others! So too it refuses a share in its joys to a stranger. Yet if grief before God isolates to God, “every family' apart and the wives apart,” joy overflows willingly to congenial souls, as the man and the woman in the parables of Luke 15 call friends and neighbors to rejoice on regaining what was lost.
In verse 11 it is not “the heart” but “the house” which may rise aloft from deep foundations. But the wicked dwell there, and no security can be for them or theirs in the moral government of God. It shall be overthrown, though the fear of God would not hasten the moment. On the other hand, how exposed to wind and rain is “the tent of the upright”! Yet the unseen hand protects, and it shall flourish.
Next we come to man's “ways,” and the danger of trusting his own estimate of it. If it seems right to him, men say why blame him? He is sincere; and none is entitled to judge him wrong. Is there then no divine standard by which we may try our thoughts, no means of forming a sound and sure judgment? Why did God then reveal His word, and early enough in an experimental shape? And why did His Son as man tabernacle long enough among men to reveal His nature and relationship in living perfection to such as have eyes to see and ears to hear? No: man is accountable for his thoughts and his feelings no less than his words and his ways; “and the end thereof is the ways of death.” Man departed far from God and disliked Him, as Christ fully proved. Though He never was far from each one of us, God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself; for which the world gave Christ the cross. Man is accountable, whatever he thinks.