DAILY DEVOTIONAL FRIDAY, JANUARY 29, 2021

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How to Interpret the Bible-1 INTERPRETING THE BIBLE how-to-study-your-bible1

Taking In the Life-Sustaining Knowledge

Proverbs 7:3 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
Bind them on your fingers;
    write them on the tablet of your heart.

Bind them on your fingers: If we recall from Proverbs 3:3, the learner was instructed to “bind them [the teachings] around your neck; write them on the tablet of your heart.” The fingers (Heb. ʾěṣ·bǎʿ) of our hands are ever before our eyes, doing the vital work that sustains us. Similarly, the Word of God should have been before our eyes as we grew as a child, or came to God as an adult, taking in the life-sustaining knowledge, acquiring wisdom, which serves as a constant reminder in the way that we should walk. Wisdom if worn by the servant of God as an accessory like a ring on our finger, it will make us more attractive to the Creator and to others who see us. It is a witness in and of itself.

Write them on the tablet of your heart: These teachings were/are to be inscribed ‘on the tablet of our heart,’ to become the very nature of who we are so that we can apply them in our lives with ease. The teachings of God’s Word, we are to make them a part of who we are as a person. The biblical lessons learned from Scriptural training or the gaining of Bible knowledge either through personal Bible study or in the Christian congregation are to be a continual reminder and guide us in everything that we do. We are to write them upon the tablet of our heart, making them the very part of our nature.

In the ancient world, writing was often done on tablets. While in Mesopotamia writing tablets were normally made of clay, in the Old Testament the term probably refers to wooden boards covered with wax, though the Ten Commandments were written on two stone tablets (Ex. 24:12). The metaphor of the heart as a tablet (not a tablet worn on a cord over the heart, as some would have it) on which one writes the law, of course, points to an internalization of God’s commands in one’s life, so that not only one’s actions but also one’s motives are pure (see also Prov. 7:3; Jer. 31:33). The only other place where writing on the heart is specifically mentioned is Jeremiah 17:1, where Judah is said to have written sin on their hearts.[1]

[1] John H Walton, Zondervan Illustrated Bible Backgrounds Commentary (Old Testament) Volume 5: The Minor Prophets, Job, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Song of Songs, 474-75 (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2009).

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