Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life. (24) Put away from thee a froward mouth, and perverse lips put far from thee. (25) Let thine eyes look right on, and let thine eyelids look straight before thee. (26) Ponder the path of thy feet, and let all thy ways be established. (27) Turn not to the right hand nor to the left: remove thy foot from evil.Proverbs 4:23-27
In yesterday’s passage we looked at three categories of terms. One category was body terms. He used the words like ear, eyes and heart. Remember that the Father has pleaded with his son to listen to his words, to keep his words in front of his eyes, and to keep them in the midst of his heart.
In verses 23-27 that body language continues. Let’s walk through the text by looking at these terms for the body.
1. The term “heart” in verse 23. The heart is the critical piece of this whole framework. The father told his son to keep his words in front of His eyes and in the midst of his heart. Why? Because out of the heart are the issues of life. The heart describes the inner man. It is the thoughts and emotions of the person. In this verse the Father tells his son to “keep” or guard his heart with all diligence. He is saying that his son must make an effort to guard the inner thoughts and emotions because it is out of that inner person that we make our choices.
2. The terms “mouth” and “lips” in verse 24. The idea here is to avoid using our mouths for destructive, degenerate, and disgusting speech.
3. The terms “eyes” and “eyelids” in verse 25. This is continuing the “path” and “way” language. The idea is to keep the eyes focused on going in the right direction and not even looking at other evil paths.
4. The term “ponder” in verse 26. This isn’t a part of the body, but describes the activity of the mind. The idea here is to think about what path you are going to take.
5. The terms “feet” and “foot” in verses 26-27. This is the part of the body that takes the rest of the body down the “path” or the “way”.
We must be careful as stewards of our bodies to use our whole selves, the inner-man and the outer-man, to honor God by taking the right path. The Word of God in our ears and eyes effect our hearts. Out of our hearts we make all the choices with rest of our body. We decide what path to take.
How do we maintain our heart?
1. Be careful about what comes in the eyes and ears.
2. Spend time in the Word of God.
3. Spend time with wise and godly people.
What do you need to do most to guard your heart today?