Text: Proverbs 14:5-16
Key: v.12, 15

When you are told “watch where you are stepping” you are typically being warned of some upcoming danger in your path.  The one giving you the warning doesn’t want you to step on something, slip on something, or trip on something.  In other words, the person giving the warning doesn’t want you to hurt yourself.  

Without such a warning there is a chance you may not see whatever is ahead and you could end up slipping, tripping, or falling down.  I happen to have a brother, whose birthday is today, who just so happens to trip over himself from time to time.  Sometimes there may be no warning and in those cases, it is up to him to be sure to watch his steps.  Sometimes you just have to look down and make sure there is nothing in your path. I want to focus on watching your step spiritually.

The Journey

In this passage of scripture (Proverbs 14:5-16), let’s look to verse 12 to get an idea of what Solomon is saying.

There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death.

Proverbs 14:12

How often have you ever thought that you were doing something right only to find out that it may have not been the best thing to do?  I believe this happens in certain cases when we start to think we know everything.  This Proverb essentially cautions us to that way of thought.  It is this very verse which leads me to tell you to watch your step.  

I want you to understand, again, that I am not talking about your physical steps.  I am speaking spiritually about this journey we all call life. All of us are on a journey.

Life is full of all kinds of paths that you can choose to take – some good and others not so good.  Everybody is seemingly trying to find the “right” path to take in their life.  I think about the Christian walk in life, which I have proudly been on since I was 8 years old, and find that some people think it’s the right path to be on while others think its as silly as believing in Santa Claus.  

Personally, I love believing in God the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.  I absolutely love believing in the death, the burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ my Savior.  That said, choosing which steps one should take seems to be the most difficult things to do nowadays.

Which path is right? Turning from the fool.

They say that with the internet there is more opportunity to fall into anything.  You ought to be cautious about who you choose to listen to, what you choose to read, or what you choose to believe nowadays.  Proverbs 14:5 declares to us, “a false witness will utter lies.”  My dad used to say, “a lie don’t care who tells it.” The fact of the matter is that there are many folks out here claiming to offer knowledge, but end up being completely ignorant to whatever it is they are supposed to be knowledgeable about.  Watch your steps because there’s a lot of deceivers in this world.

How does one know sound knowledge from foolish knowledge? Proverbs 14:7 gives us an answer – “when thou (you) perceivest not in him the lips of knowledge.”  In other words, you ought to listen to what is coming from a person’s lips. At the start of verse 7, you will see that it says to “go from the presence of a foolish man”.  You should leave the presence of a person when you begin to perceive there is no sound knowledge coming out their mouth!  Solomon says in verse 9, “fools make a mock at sin (mock at guilt)”.

Many folks feel they have done something wrong or that for some reason they are no good.  Spiritually speaking, it is the Holy Spirit that shows us our faults and guides us to do better.  Many people, even those who are not “religious” are led to seek penance over this driving feeling (feeling of guilt – sin).  Christians will look to the Lord and then look to the person they may have wronged while others will look to the person to forgive them.  Well, the fool simply does not care one way or the other – they spit on and make a mockery of sin.  If you are going to take a path in life you ought to take a path that completely removes those kinds of people out of your life!

The problem we get into is that we try to hold on to a foolish man or woman that has no sound knowledge to offer to our lives.  We are to go from their presence, not hold on to them!  Staying in the presence of that person or trying to follow after that path will lead to no good thing.  Firstly, “the house of the wicked shall be overthrown (v.11).”  We spoke about getting our house in order last week, so remember that the house is the individual person.  

Watch your step! You do not want your house to be overthrown!  If not in this world there will certainly be some houses destroyed when the Lord sits on His throne.  If you’re going to keep those folks around just know that your path will become foggier and messier as they drag their mess into your path.

Be cautious, be prudent

Watch the steps you choose to take in this life you live.  The way that seems right may not be the best way or even the righteous way for that matter.  IF there is any path you should want to take in life it ought to be the righteous path that leads you through the gates of heaven.  Again I repeat the caution given in verse 5, “a false witness will utter lies.”  Sadly enough, you cannot believe everything you hear as it pertains to the doctrine of Christ.  

There are many lies out there that would lead you astray from the true doctrine of Jesus Christ.  Again I say, use your ears and listen to the doctrine that is being spoken and if that doctrine is not sound doctrine, you ought to leave from its presence.  Somebody could shout out that there is something about to trip you up but when you look down, you may see that they were trying to fool you.  The Spirit is nothing to fool with!

In Proverbs 14:8 it is said, “the wisdom of the prudent is to understand his way”.  If you are watching your steps you are taking the time to actually look where you are going, right?  No matter what it is, spiritually or earthly, use the mind God gave you! The wise man or woman will go out and seek knowledge and understanding – not be led by the nose by a fool.  Do some research.  Seek out sound knowledge and sound doctrine.  BE PRUDENT. Sadly, there are quite a few people who will believe anything certain people tell them.

The simple believes every word, but the prudent considers well his steps.

Proverbs 14:15 NKJV

Do not be naive. Do not be simple minded!  If you do not take time to study, to understand, you will end up believing what anybody tells you.  Understand that the false witness and the foolish mentioned throughout today’s text is fully capable of telling you anything.  Satan knows the Bible well enough to paraphrase and mess all over the doctrine of Christ.  

The biggest “non-religious” person you know believes in something and you better believe they will share their beliefs with you.  Watch. Your. Step.  People will fool you into making very poor decisions so you ought to be prudent and think carefully about the steps you take.

“A wise man fears and departs from evil,” is a smart saying from Solomon.  The one that watches where he is going will not be lead down a path that looks dangerous.  The fool will see the dark cave and choose to foolishly walk down the dark cave without shedding any light into the cave.  There are steps you can take that will lead you to entering through the gates of Heaven.  

There are steps you can take that will lead you straight towards death (the second death).  Be sure to watch the steps you take because one step is all it takes to take steps towards Jesus or towards destruction.  Be prudent and consider carefully to your going.

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