Meditation and Prayer Journey – Proverbs 16

Proverbs 16


NIV Version,  Message VersionEnglish Standard Version (see the list of related scriptures at the bottom of the ESV page), King James Version

Amplified Version

  1THE PLANS of the mind and orderly thinking belong to man, but from the Lord comes the [wise] answer of the tongue.

2All the ways of a man are pure in his own eyes, but the Lord weighs the spirits (the thoughts and intents of the heart).(A)

3Roll your works upon the Lord [commit and trust them wholly to Him; He will cause your thoughts to become agreeable to His will, and] so shall your plans be established and succeed.

4The Lord has made everything [to accommodate itself and contribute] to its own end and His own purpose–even the wicked [are fitted for their role] for the day of calamity and evil.

5Everyone proud and arrogant in heart is disgusting, hateful, and exceedingly offensive to the Lord; be assured [I pledge it] they will not go unpunished.(B)

6By mercy and love, truth and fidelity [to God and man–not by sacrificial offerings], iniquity is purged out of the heart, and by the reverent, worshipful fear of the Lord men depart from and avoid evil.

7When a man’s ways please the Lord, He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him.

8Better is a little with righteousness (uprightness in every area and relation and right standing with God) than great revenues with injustice.(C)

9A man’s mind plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps and makes them sure.(D)

10Divinely directed decisions are on the lips of the king; his mouth should not transgress in judgment.

11A just balance and scales are the Lord’s; all the weights of the bag are His work [established on His eternal principles].

12It is an abomination [to God and men] for kings to commit wickedness, for a throne is established and made secure by righteousness (moral and spiritual rectitude in every area and relation).

13Right and just lips are the delight of a king, and he loves him who speaks what is right.

14The wrath of a king is as messengers of death, but a wise man will pacify it.

15In the light of the king’s countenance is life, and his favor is as a cloud bringing the spring rain.

16How much better it is to get skillful and godly Wisdom than gold! And to get understanding is to be chosen rather than silver.(E)

17The highway of the upright turns aside from evil; he who guards his way preserves his life.

18Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall.

19Better it is to be of a humble spirit with the meek and poor than to divide the spoil with the proud.

20He who deals wisely and heeds [God’s] word and counsel shall find good, and whoever leans on, trusts in, and is confident in the Lord–happy, blessed, and fortunate is he.

21The wise in heart are called prudent, understanding, and knowing, and winsome speech increases learning [in both speaker and listener].

22Understanding is a wellspring of life to those who have it, but to give instruction to fools is folly.

23The mind of the wise instructs his mouth, and adds learning and persuasiveness to his lips.

24Pleasant words are as a honeycomb, sweet to the mind and healing to the body.

25There is a way that seems right to a man and appears straight before him, but at the end of it is the way of death.

26The appetite of the laborer works for him, for [the need of] his mouth urges him on.

27A worthless man devises and digs up mischief, and in his lips there is as a scorching fire.

28A perverse man sows strife, and a whisperer separates close friends.(F)

29The exceedingly grasping, covetous, and violent man entices his neighbor, leading him in a way that is not good.

30He who shuts his eyes to devise perverse things and who compresses his lips [as if in concealment] brings evil to pass.

31The hoary head is a crown of beauty and glory if it is found in the way of righteousness (moral and spiritual rectitude in every area and relation).(G)

32He who is slow to anger is better than the mighty, he who rules his [own] spirit than he who takes a city.

33The lot is cast into the lap, but the decision is wholly of the Lord [even the events that seem accidental are really ordered by Him].

* NOTE: Other views expressed by those whose materials has been referenced here, do not necessarily reflect this author’s personal views.

Further Study

Proverb-A-Day: Chapter 15

Proverbs Spiritual Checkup

Proverbs 16:28
It Takes Just One

In 1520, one person stepped off a Spanish ship in Mexico and caused the deaths of thousands of people. The man was a soldier under the leadership of Pánfilo de Narváez, and he had smallpox. The soldier didn’t know it, but wherever he went he exposed the citizens to a new disease. As a result of the ensuing smallpox epidemic, many thousands of Mexican citizens died.

One man. That’s all it took. His contact with the unsuspecting Mexican people led to a horrible, painful scourge. The devastating effects of that disease traveled from one person to another, infecting a large segment of the population.

The spread of any deadly disease is similar to the spread of a spiritual sickness that sometimes strikes churches—the disease of gossip and unedifying words (Ephesians 4:2930noteEp 4:3132note).

It’s not unusual for a happy and well-adjusted congregation of people to be infected after just one person introduces gossip. Soon dissension is running rampant among people who had been eagerly working together, and the church finds itself spending more time on damage control than on ministry.

Each of us should be careful not to spread the sickness of gossip. Instead, let’s use our words to strengthen and encourage one another.—Dave Branon (Our Daily Bread, Copyright RBC Ministries, Grand Rapids, MI. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved)

A careless word may kindle strife,
A cruel word may wreck a life;
A timely word may lessen stress,
A loving word may heal and bless. —Anon.

To silence gossip, refuse to repeat it

Multi Media

The Book of Proverbs as narrated by Max McLean – Proverbs 16

A Better Way to Live Proverbs 16:3

Proverbs 16:7-9 – Are You Happy With The Life That God Gave You?

Anger-Proverbs 16:32


STUDIES ON PROVERBS Exposition: Proverbs

Bible commentaries: Here are a few I personally use: John Darby’s SynopsisMatthew Henry’s Concise Commentary;John Wesley’s Explanatory Notes; John Gill’s Exposition of the Bible

Bible Explained: An interactive commentary on the whole Bible.

My Reflections

Wise or Foolish

Pop out verses: (There are a whole lot of familiar verses here that kind of pop out so I’m just going to go with the first and last verses and one from somewhere in the middle.)

1THE PLANS of the mind and orderly thinking belong to man, but from the Lord comes the [wise] answer of the tongue.

28A perverse man sows strife, and a whisperer separates close friends.(F)

33The lot is cast into the lap, but the decision is wholly of the Lord [even the events that seem accidental are really ordered by Him].

V1 – Guess the reason I, or we, can’t control our tongue is because we aren’t letting God do it.  As John Wesley put it: “From the Lord – Men can neither think nor speak wisely and well without Divine assistance.”

V28 – Ok, so it really isn’t from the middle, but this one has recently been one I’ve seen play out in my life recently. It’s a sad thing when this happens. It happens because of whispering, gossip, half truths, lies, and all the things that were talked about up until now in Proverbs. Basically, its a foolish or wicked man leading foolish people astray. I know that may sound harsh, but it is what the Bible says.  The foolish people did not seek out the truth or seek wise counsel to determine what was true and what was not. They did not want to hear any instructions or reproof. They were foolish. The only way to undo something like this is with truth, light, and bringing things out into the open. Sure, everyone may still go away divided, but at least the freedom of truth will be revealed. Unfortunately, this does not always happen, nor can it happen. Sometimes, circumstances just do not provide the opportunity for that kind of atmosphere. But many of the Proverbs have made it clear that nothing get’s by God, and He will bring the truth out eventually. For now, most of the burden is held by the foolish or wicked leader, but when the truth is revealed, it shifts to those who were foolishly led away.

V33 – I kind of liked this one. It’s something to keep in mind. My only question would be how does man’s free will play into this. But then I think, it’s like those old time cars at the amusement park. Sure, you think you’re driving and that you are in control, but you can only go so far before you hit that little thin strip of metal that keeps you from getting too far off the track. So we can choose to turn the wheel, but ultimately, God will only let us turn it so far.

Oh, and I really liked this saying that goes with V24

Beware of those who stand aloof
And greet each venture with reproof;
The world would stop if things were run
By men who say, “It can’t be done!”- Anonymous


I’m just going to borrow a few sayings I read along the way and put them together as the Prayer for this Proverb.

All things work out for good, we know—
Such is God’s great design;
He orders all our steps below
For purposes divine. —Peterson

I to Christ my life have given,
Ever His alone to be;
Oh, what peace and blessed assurance,
That He has a plan for me! —Thiesen

O God, we thank You for the peace
And happiness You give
Because we’ve trusted in Your son
Who died so we could live.– Sper

How easy it is to use many words
And yet be unwise in the things that you say;
So willingly yield your speech to the Lord,
And hearts will be blest by you every day. –DJD


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