A Man Void of Understanding, Prov 7:6-10



In the Proverbs, we find the expression, “void of understanding” five times.  Studying the references containing this phrase is interesting and very instructive. So, in this sermon, we’ll look at these verses in their context and see what we can learn.  Notice these attributes of a man void of understanding:

His curse – Prov 7:6-10 A young man void of understanding.  In v.7 he’s still a youth.  The nature of young men is that they are void of understanding.  They haven’t lived long enough to understand what some of us now know.  In v.8 he’s heading the wrong way.  He’s going near her corner, the way to her house.  He’s sure enough looking for trouble.  He’s traveling at the wrong time of day, v.9.  Some parents have a curfew for this very reason.  In v.10 he met the flattering harlot, v.21.  He’s no match for her.  She’s gotten strong men to fall, 7:26.  There’s nothing good about getting hooked up with her, v.27.  Now imagine what’s going on in junior high schools, high schools, and colleges in this country.  Look what Solomon wrote in v. 24-27 to try to give young men some understanding.

His chastisement – Prov 10:13 rod for the back.  We can’t really do this kind of chastisement anymore.  However, a hard rebuke or reproof, and the harsh consequences of his own sin, might get his attention.  The trouble is that “A reproof entereth more into a wise man, than an hundred stripes into a fool,” Prov 17:10.  He may not get it.  Prov 27:22 says, “Though thou shouldest bray a fool in a mortar among wheat with a pestle, yet will not his foolishness depart from him.”  When these chastisements don’t work, he’s well nigh gone and it’s good for you to know this.  

His companions – Prov 12:11 followeth vain persons.  A vain person is worthless.  His friends are worthless.  And the trouble is that he’s a follower and he follows them.  “A companion of fools shall be destroyed,” Prov 13:20.  It really helps for a young man to stay away from vain persons and go to work in the field, instead.  “He that tilleth his land shall be satisfied with bread.”  Part of the problem in today’s society is that most men don’t have to grow their own food.  Lam 3:27 says, “It is good for a man that he bear the yoke in his youth.”  When he’s working like that, he doesn’t have the time or the energy to hang out late with these vain persons.  

His covenant – Prov 17:18 striketh hands, and becometh surety in the presence of his friend.  This is like the bond between members of a gang.  I have seen many young men turn down an invitation to receive Jesus Christ because they are in tight with a crowd that doesn’t like Jesus.  Eighteen teens in a church service walked out a few at a time because of their covenant with each other.  They were all members of the same gang.  Not one of them was brave enough to pull out and trust Jesus.  

His character – Prov 24:30-34 field of the slothful.  He’s a lazy procrastinator.  He’s a shirker of responsibility.  Maintenance of his property is hard work and he doesn’t want to do it.  George Horace Lorimer said, “Putting off a hard thing makes it impossible.”  And so his life is totally unproductive.  You expect more out of him.  You say, “clean up your room, mow the grass, take care of your stuff.”  But he just doesn’t understand.  And so his life falls apart like this field and vineyard in our text.

Conclusion: The solution is that he needs understanding.  This comes from the word of God, from yielding to the Holy Spirit, from instruction, knowledge and good counsel.  If he’ll listen and apply what he’s hearing, he’ll begin to understand and he’ll change.  Apart from this, he’s hopeless.