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Blog - Proverbs 2:16

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Proverbs 2:16

"To deliver thee from the strange woman, even from the stranger which flattereth with her words;" (Pro 2:16)


Not only will wisdom deliver the young man from the evil man (Pro 2:12), but it will also save him from the strange woman. A strange woman is "a harlot", which is "an unchaste woman; a prostitute" (OED). A chaste woman is a woman who is "pure from unlawful sexual intercourse" (OED), and, according to God's law, unlawful sexual intercourse is fornication (1Co 6:18) and adultery (Heb 13:4). Fornication is "voluntary sexual intercourse between a man (in restricted use, an unmarried man) and an unmarried woman" (OED). Therefore, a strange woman is not merely a prostitute, but is also a woman who offers the same service free of charge to boyfriends or men whom she dates.

According to a study completed by the The Guttmacher Institute, 95% of people (94% of women and 96% of men) by age 44 have had premarital sex. Therefore, by Biblical definition, 94% of women are, or were at one time in their lives, strange women, and 96% of men are, or were at one time in their lives, whoremongers. With these appalling figures in this wicked and perverse generation, the need for wisdom, which will deliver the godly young man from the strange woman, is as crucial as ever.

The fact that wisdom is necessary to deliver a man from the strange woman shows that she is both dangerous and subtle. Though women are "the weaker vessel" (1Pe 3:7), they nevertheless wield great power over men. The first man Adam in his sinless innocence "was not deceived" (1Ti 2:14) by the devil, but was nonetheless talked into sinning against God when he "hearkened unto the voice of [his] wife" (Gen 3:17), forever destroying the human race. Solomon was the wisest man that ever lived (1Ki 4:30-31), with the exception of the Lord Jesus Christ (Mat 12:42), but "nevertheless even him did outlandish women cause to sin" (Neh 13:26); for it came to pass, "when Solomon was old, that his wives turned away his heart after other gods" (1Ki 11:4). Solomon should have taken heed to the counsel he gave his son and to the wise instruction of his mother who taught him to "give not thy strength unto women" (Pro 31:3). And then there was Samson, a man of exceeding strength (Jdg 15:15), who was brought down by the antics of a sly woman (Jdg 16:15-21). And lastly there was David, "a man after [God's] own heart" (Act 13:22), whose lust for a beautiful woman led him to commit adultery with her (2Sa 11:2-4) and to murder her husband to cover it up (2Sa 11:14-17). Given the fact that women, whether wittingly or unwittingly, have great power over even the best of men, from a sinless man to the wisest man, and from the strongest man to the godliest man, it is of the gravest importance for a Christian man to "get wisdom" (Pro 4:5) from the word of God which will "deliver [him] from the strange woman" (Pro 2:16). Godly women would be wise to do the same to deliver themselves from lascivious men.

The stranger which flattereth with her words. The primary weapon in the arsenal of the whore is flattery. To flatter is "to try to please or win the favour of a person by obsequious speech or conduct; to court, fawn upon; to praise or compliment unduly or insincerely" (OED). The young man should beware of the woman who showers him with high praise, for "a [woman] that flattereth [her] neighbour spreadeth a net for his feet" (Pro 29:5).

Solomon spent the whole of the seventh chapter of Proverbs describing in fine detail the way of the strange woman "which flattereth with her words" (Pro 7:5). She preys on the young man that is simple and void of understanding who wanders in darkness (Pro 7:6-9). She dresses with "the attire of an harlot" and she is "subtle of heart" (Pro 7:10). Unlike godly women who are "of a meek and quiet spirit" (1Pe 3:4) and are "keepers at home" (Tit 2:5), she is rather "loud and stubborn [and] her feet abide not in her house" (Pro 7:11). She lies in wait for him, catching and seducing him (Pro 7:12-13). She feigns religion to appeal to his spiritual side (Pro 7:14-15). She tempts him with talk of her finely adorned bed (Pro 7:16-17). She allures him with the suggestion of lovemaking, assuring him that her husband is gone and will not return for a great while (Pro 7:18-20). Finally, "with her much fair speech she caused him to yield, with the flattering of her lips she forced him" (Pro 7:21).

She didn't need to use superior strength or weaponry to force the young man into her filthy bed, but merely "good words and fair speeches [that] deceive the hearts of the simple" (Rom 16:18). Her lips "drop as an honeycomb, and her mouth is smoother than oil" (Pro 5:3), but her mouth is "a deep pit [and] he that is abhorred of the LORD shall fall therein" (Pro 22:14). As the following verses show, the LORD's warning to hearken unto wisdom in order to be delivered from the strange woman which flatters with her words is deadly serious.

Pro 2:18-19 - For her house inclineth unto death, and her paths unto the dead. 19 None that go unto her return again, neither take they hold of the paths of life.

Pro 5:20-23 - And why wilt thou, my son, be ravished with a strange woman, and embrace the bosom of a stranger? 21 For the ways of man are before the eyes of the LORD, and he pondereth all his goings. 22 His own iniquities shall take the wicked himself, and he shall be holden with the cords of his sins. 23 He shall die without instruction; and in the greatness of his folly he shall go astray.

Pro 6:32-33 - But whoso committeth adultery with a woman lacketh understanding: he that doeth it destroyeth his own soul. 33 A wound and dishonour shall he get; and his reproach shall not be wiped away.

Pro 7:22-27 - He goeth after her straightway, as an ox goeth to the slaughter, or as a fool to the correction of the stocks; 23 Till a dart strike through his liver; as a bird hasteth to the snare, and knoweth not that it is for his life. 24 Hearken unto me now therefore, O ye children, and attend to the words of my mouth. 25 Let not thine heart decline to her ways, go not astray in her paths. 26 For she hath cast down many wounded: yea, many strong men have been slain by her. 27 Her house is the way to hell, going down to the chambers of death.



If you like this blog, then you will like Get Wisdom, Get Understanding which is Pastor Wagner's commentary on Proverbs chapter 1 which is available on Amazon in paperback or Kindle. Find out more here.

For the previous blog in this series, click here: Proverbs 2:15.
For the next blog in this series, click here: Proverbs 2:17.

For all the blogs in this series, click here: Proverbs Commentary.

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