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Proverbs 1:2 (Mini Sermon)

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2. Pro 1:2 - "To know wisdom and instruction; to perceive the words of understanding;"
A. Pro 1:2-4 gives Solomon's purpose for writing the book of Proverbs.
B. The primary purpose of the Proverbs is to know certain things.
i. Know - I. 1. a. trans. To perceive (a thing or person) as identical with one perceived before, or of which one has a previous notion; to recognize; to identify.
ii. Therefore, the human mind is capable of knowing things.
iii. This may seem obvious, but this simple fact has escaped many so-called great minds, both of the ancient Sophists of Socrates' day, and their philosophical grandchildren of the Enlightenment, who "professing themselves to be wise, they became fools" (Rom 1:22) and declared that a man cannot know anything for certain.
a. This, of course, is self-refuting nonsense.
b. If it is certain that a man cannot know anything for certain, then he knows something for certain; and if it is not certain that a man cannot know anything for certain, then he cannot with certainty state that he cannot know anything for certain.
iv. Solomon didn't need to prove that the human mind is capable of knowing, for it is a self-evident truth which must be affirmed to be denied.
C. Not only can the mind know facts, God created man's mind to be able to know wisdom.
i. Wisdom n. - 1. a. Capacity of judging rightly in matters relating to life and conduct; soundness of judgement in the choice of means and ends; sometimes, less strictly, sound sense, esp. in practical affairs: opp. to folly.
ii. Therefore, man is capable of knowing how to judge rightly in matters relating to life and conduct.
iii. But he isn't born with this knowledge innately, for he is commanded to "get wisdom" (Pro 4:5), which demands that he doesn't have it naturally.
iv. Man, therefore, has to learn wisdom in order to know it.
D. The next purpose for the book of Proverbs is "to know instruction."
i. Instruction n. - 1. The action of instructing or teaching; the imparting of knowledge or skill; education; information.
ii. In order to learn wisdom, a man must first know that he needs to be taught, which implies that he must first recognize his ignorance.
iii. The man that doesn't think he needs instruction, needs instruction, for "if any man think that he knoweth any thing, he knoweth nothing yet as he ought to know" (1Co 8:2).
iv. Wise men receive instruction (Pro 9:9), but fools despise it (Pro 1:7).
E. The next purpose for the book of Proverbs is "to perceive the words of understanding."
i. Perceive v. - 1. trans. To apprehend with the mind; to become aware or conscious of; to observe, understand.
ii. Understanding n. - 1. a. (Without article.) Power or ability to understand; intellect, intelligence. b. of understanding, intelligent, capable of judging with knowledge. Similarly of some, of no, understanding. c. With the: The faculty of comprehending and reasoning; the intellect.
iii. Therefore, the Proverbs were written to help us to apprehend with our minds the words of intelligence and reason.