You Don’t Know Everything
Text: Proverbs 25:1-10
This passage indicates that the proverbs that follow were not included in the original text of Proverbs. They are still the writings of Solomon, who was inspired by God, but they were appended to the book many years later in King Hezekiah’s day. These were not the recording of oral traditions because the verse indicates they were copied or transcribed from another written document or documents. I Chronicles 31:21 indicates that Hezekiah appointed servants to do various task on behalf of the Lord. Likely this was one of them. There were prophets, such as Isaiah, Micah, and Hosea, during this time and any one of them could have been asked to take on the task.
Observation on Kings
God gains glory because we cannot guess the reasons behind His actions (Romans 11:33). God doesn’t have to explain Himself, and the fact that we cannot fully understand God just emphasizes how much greater He is than man. However, kings are not God. Their glory comes when they search out information. God knows everything, but He doesn’t reveal everything He knows. Instead, He insists that leaders figure out what is going on. When they show understanding of people and the various situations that come before the kings, it brings them honor.
But like any person, no other person knows exactly what a king thinks (I Corinthians 2:11). His thoughts are as difficult to understand as the entire universe. We may learn a bit of the universe, but we won’t ever comprehend it all. Those who seek to advise a king should remember this.
Dross is the worthless material mixed in with raw silver ore. It is only when the worthless material is removed that the silver becomes useable. In the same way, a kingdom containing widespread evil is not stable. Only by removing evil is a king’s rule made stable because only righteousness is stable (Psalms 101:3,8). This is especially true if evil exists within the government. No king can rule justly if his servants are corrupt (Jeremiah 6:27-30).
Holding self-pride before someone who is superior to you is a quick route to embarrassment. Recall that no one knows the mind of the king, where you might think you are superior to others, the king may very well have a different opinion. Thus, it is better to have a ruler bestow honor on you than to be lowered by the ruler in the sight of other people (Luke 14:7-11).
Continuing with the idea of the difficulty of pride, we are warned not to be quick to take a neighbor to court. No one knows everything and the reason you are in a disagreement may likely be due to a lack of knowledge. What happens when you appear in court and are made to look foolish because of some vital, but overlooked, fact? (Matthew 5:25).
Instead, try to settle the argument directly with your neighbor. If it is settled, then don’t reveal the problem to anyone else (Matthew 18:15-17). The knowledge you learn in settling the matter is not yours to divulge. Gossiping about settled matters will only ruin your own reputation.