Prudent People in the Bible?

Discussion in 'OT Wisdom Literature' started by Poimen, Aug 13, 2005.

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  1. Poimen

    Poimen Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    We are studying the book of Proverbs and have come to chapter 12 vs. 23:

    "A prudent man conceals knowledge, But the heart of fools proclaims foolishness."

    The Bible study says:

    I tried to think of some but I can't come up with anything. I know of prudent men and women but I don't know of anyone using their prudence in this vein?

    Any suggestions/examples?
  2. BayouHuguenot

    BayouHuguenot Puritan Board Doctor

    Although it treds shady ethical lines, what about the stories of Rahab the harlot; Tamar in the Judah narrative (Genesis 38)--which was revealed at the "right time."? Hushai the Archite in 2 Samuel 15 (revealed his knowledge and semi-falsified information to Absalom.)
  3. VirginiaHuguenot

    VirginiaHuguenot Puritanboard Librarian

    Well, sometimes God is glorified in the silence of his saints (such as the midwives in Exodus 1). One of the sins forbidden by the Ninth Commandment is: "speaking the truth unseasonably" (WLC #145). Silence can be golden. In the gospels there are many examples of Jesus commanding the disciples not to tell others who He was, ie., the Messianic Secret. Also, he is said to withhold knowledge from those whom it was not given to understand aright.

    Ex.: Luke 8:10 And he(Jesus) said, Unto you it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God: but to others in parables; that seeing they might not see, and hearing they might not understand.

    Mark 3:11-12 And unclean spirits, when they saw him, fell down before him, and cried, saying, Thou art the Son of God. And he(Jesus) straitly charged them that they should not make him known.

    Luke 20:1-8 And it came to pass, that on one of those days, as he taught the people in the temple, and preached the gospel, the chief priests and the scribes came upon him with the elders, And spake unto him, saying, Tell us, by what authority doest thou these things? or who is he that gave thee this authority? And he answered and said unto them, I will also ask you one thing; and answer me: The baptism of John, was it from heaven, or of men? And they reasoned with themselves, saying, If we shall say, From heaven; he will say, Why then believed ye him not? But and if we say, Of men; all the people will stone us: for they be persuaded that John was a prophet. And they answered, that they could not tell whence it was. And Jesus said unto them, Neither tell I you by what authority I do these things.

    Mark 1:39-44 And He went into their synagogues throughout all Galilee, preaching and casting out the demons. And a leper came to Him, beseeching Him"¦ He stretched forth his hand, and touched him, and saith unto him, "œI will; be thou made clean." And straightway the leprosy departed from him, and he was made clean. And he strictly charged him, and straightway sent him out, and saith unto him, "œSee thou say nothing to any man"¦"

    Mark 5:18-20 And as he was entering into the boat, he that had been possessed with demons besought him that he might be with him. And he suffered him not, but saith unto him, "œGo to thy house unto thy friends, and tell them how great things the Lord hath done for thee, and how he had mercy on thee." And he went his way, and began to publish in Decapolis how great things Jesus had done for him: and all men marvelled.

    Luke 8: 52-56 At the house of a synagogue official in Galilee: And all were weeping, and bewailing her: but he said, "œWeep not; for she is not dead, but sleepeth." And they laughed him to scorn, knowing that she was dead. But he, taking her by the hand, called, saying, "œMaiden, arise." And her spirit returned, and she rose up immediately: and he commanded that something be given her to eat. And her parents were amazed: but he charged them to tell no man what had been done.

    Matthew 13:10-13 And the disciples came, and said unto him, "œWhy speakest thou unto them [Jews] in parables?" And he answered and said unto them, "œUnto you it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given. For whosoever hath, to him shall be given, and he shall have abundance: but whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken away even that which he hath. Therefore speak I to them in parables; because seeing they see not, and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand."

    Mark 7:32-36 And they bring unto him one that was deaf, and had an impediment in his speech; and they beseech him to lay his hand upon him. And he took him aside from the multitude privately, and put his fingers into his ears, and he spat, and touched his tongue; and looking up to heaven, he sighed, and saith unto him, "œEphphatha," that is, "œBe opened." And his ears were opened, and the bond of his tongue was loosed, and he spake plain. And he charged them that they should tell no man

    Matt. 16:18-20 "œAnd I also say unto thee, that thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it. I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven." Then charged he the disciples that they should tell no man that he was the Christ.

    John 7:2-6 Now the feast of the Jews, the feast of tabernacles, was at hand. His brethren therefore said unto him, "œDepart hence, and go into Judæa, that thy disciples also may behold thy works which thou doest. For no man doeth anything in secret, and himself seeketh to be known openly. If thou doest these things, manifest thyself to the world." For even his brethren did not believe on him. Jesus therefore saith unto them, "œMy TIME is not yet come."

    Matt. 17:9 And as they [Peter, James, & John] were coming down from the mountain [after the transfiguration], Jesus commanded them, saying, "œTell the vision to no man, until the Son of man be risen from the dead."

    Luke 4:31,41 And he came down to Capernaum, a city of Galilee"¦ And demons also came out from many, crying out, and saying, Thou art the Son of God. And rebuking them, he suffered them not to speak, because they knew that he was the Christ.

    But I think this verse in Proverbs speaks more to the issue of pridefully announcing one's knowledge.

    Matthew Henry:

    I would also compare this verse with Proverbs 29:11. A fool uttereth all his mind: but a wise man keepeth it in till afterwards. Again, Matthew Henry:

    The bottom line, I think, is that while we are commanded to speak the truth at appropriate times, we are not always required to say everything we know at all times and to do so often shows us to be motivated by foolish pride.

    It is better to be silent, and be thought a fool, than to speak and remove all doubt. -- Silvan Engel

    Do you wish people to think well of you? Don't speak well of yourself. -- Blaise Pascal

    A man is known by the silence he keeps. -- Oliver Herford

    The best time for you to hold your tongue is the time you feel you must say something or bust. -Josh Billings

    Silence is more eloquent than words. -- Thomas Carlyle

    HAVE communion with few,
    Be intimate with ONE,
    Deal justly with all,
    Speak evil of none. -- The New England Primer

    [Edited on 8-14-2005 by VirginiaHuguenot]
  4. gwine

    gwine Puritan Board Sophomore

    Jonathan speaking to his father Saul about David would probably be another one on the edge . . .
  5. Poimen

    Poimen Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    Thanks for the suggestions!
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