7 The righteous lead blameless lives; blessed are their children after them. 8 When a king sits on his throne to judge, he winnows out all evil with his eyes. 9 Who can say, “I have kept my heart pure; I am clean and without sin”? 10 Differing weights and differing measures– the LORD detests them both. 11 Even small children are known by their actions, so is their conduct really pure and upright? 12 Ears that hear and eyes that see– the LORD has made them both. (Prov. 20:7-12 NIV)
7 The righteous lead blameless lives;
blessed are their children after them.
A blameless life is the kind of life that every Christian desires to live. A blameless life sets the best example for children. The righteous person is a person who is a devout believer and follower of God. Even a righteous person sins, but when they sin, they know that the righteous thing to do is to confess it to God. The righteous person sets a godly example for their children to follow. This example is worth more than any education or inheritance that the parents might provide.
8 When a king sits on his throne to judge,
he winnows out all evil with his eyes.
In OT times the king was the judge and with him lay the final verdict. The king was not the only judge as he would appoint wise counsellors and judges. It served the purposes of justice when the king was a wise and godly person. That kind of rule will be restored when Jesus Christ the King rules on the throne of His kingdom. Then will come to pass the answer to the prayer that we have all prayed from childhood, ‘Your kingdom come, Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.’ The godly king of OT times would seek to rid the country of all injustice and would be provided with discernment from God’s wisdom to enable him to recognise where evil exists.
9 Who can say, “I have kept my heart pure; I am clean and without sin”?
The implied answer to this proverb is, ‘no one’. We should never dare to think that we could ever stand before God in our own righteousness. We have neither sinless actions nor sinless motives. It is only because the righteousness of Christ that any will be in heaven. However, we should strive to live our lives without resorting to impurity, evil or sin.
10 Differing weights and differing measures– the LORD detests them both.
How we conduct our business is a spiritual matter. An ethical approach to life and people is a spiritual matter. The history behind the proverb is that heavier weights were used to buy, and lighter weights to sell. Some farmers, when they were selling their grain, would wet the grain to make it heavier. Buyers now use a moisture meter to calculate the true weight of the grain. This kind of practice does not go unnoticed by the Lord. The Lord detests corrupt practices.
11 Even small children are known by their actions,
so is their conduct really pure and upright?
The character of a young person is evident by their actions. What is inwardly true in the character is outwardly made known through the actions. Through observing their actions we can know what teaching, discipline and instruction the child needs.
12 Ears that hear and eyes that see– the LORD has made them both.
This proverb seems to make a very obvious statement but there is a deeper meaning if seen in the wider context of Proverbs. It is the Lord who has given us the ear that hears wisdom and the eye to see and discern what truth is.
Heavenly Father, when the Lord Jesus Christ was upon earth He often said, ‘those who have ears let them hear, and those who have eyes let them see.’ Lord give us the attentive ear that listens to Your word and the eye that looks into Your word, because we ask this in the name of Jesus. Amen.