Chips of Wisdom

As iron sharpens iron, so people can improve each other.
Proverb 27:17 NCV


Proverbs 27:17 (Amplified Bible) “Iron sharpens iron; so a man sharpens the countenance of his friend [to show rage or worthy.” purpose].

Proverbs 27:17 (NLT) ” As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend.”

#1 can
#2 rage or worthy
#3 friend

Whom does it depend on? You or the other?

Matthew Henry says, “We are cautioned to take heed whom we converse with. And directed to have in view, in conversation, to make one another wiser and better.” (Pr 27:18)

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9 thoughts on “Chips of Wisdom

  1. I agree with Matthew Henry, when he states to be cautioned to who we converse with. We must be careful when we choose friends. The footnotes for Proverbs 27:17 (NLT) iron sharpens iron: Wisdom comes from interaction, often critical, with a good friend (see 27:6,9)
    Proverbs 27:6 “Wounds from a sincere friend are better than many kisses from an enemy.” (footnotes: Wounds from a……friend are from a loving rebuke(27:5). They are better than flattery (many kisses) from an enemy who intends to harm rather than to help.)
    Proverbs 27:9 “The heartfelt counsel of a friend is as sweet as perfume and incense.” (Footnotes: Nothing is more encouraging than heartfelt counsel from an intimate friend.)
    So let us be wise in choosing friends and let our friends be friends of Jesus.

  2. Jesus said, “No greater love has anyone than he/she lay down their life for a FRIEND.” Of course, Jesus lay down His life so that He could call us “friend”. I was wondering if we are willing to lay down our preferences, our desires, our wishes, choices, for our friends? Do we prefer one another over ourselves? My friend just told me that she had a whole day planned, doing the chores that needed to be done and relaxing in between with a chapter from a book she was enthralled with. A phone call…a friend in dire need…need to talk, need to get some counsel, in the middle of a crisis, a mess…etc. So my friend laid aside the rest of her chores and her book and her friend came to the house
    and she spoke what the Lord would have her say.
    Are we wise enough to turn unproductive conversation into something of value? Or do we just walk away or escape and miss an opportunity to share a viewpoint on the subject that the Lord would have us share just because we don’t want to be bored by someone who, at that moment, might need to talk about a certain subject that we are NOT interested in? But many times we can wisely turn that around to something encouraging.
    These are just some thoughts and i am sure there will be disagreement but it is something that comes up very often. We are thrown into a work society where the ball is in our court. We can turn the conversation many times if we would just ask the Holy Spirit to prompt us. He probably is….if we’d just listen.

  3. When I read the three scriptures and contemplated the question, “Whom does it depend on? You or the other? ” I thought of a singles tennis game…it takes two to play. And three keys words that I got from the comments above help frame the game for my understanding. Chickenfarmer spoke of interaction; Needles spoke of being wise and MG spoke of ball. All three required for a tennis game …all three required for iron to sharpen iron.
    Someone can serve me a ball of skillful communication, but if I am unresponsive or lack ability and don’t return it, there is no sharpening of interaction and the one who served has no opportunity to hone their skills. This action could simply result in rage not worthy purpose. Maybe the server needs to wise up and find another tennis partner if he wants to improve his game.
    “Do not be misled: Bad company corrupts good morals.” I Cor 15:33

  4. Debi, thanks for the scripture in 1 Corinthians. Listen to the footnotes: “Keeping company with those who deny the resurrection can corrupt good Christian character. Don’t let your relationships with unbelievers lead you away from Christ or cause your faith to waver.”
    Paul is one example, for us. Read Phil. 1:20, with me: “For I fully expect and hope that I will never be ashamed, but that I will continue to be bold for Christ, as I have been in the past. And I trust that my life will bring honor to Christ, whether I live or die.” Then verse 25 says: “Knowing this, I am convinced that I will remain alive so I can continue to help all of you grow and experience the joy of your faith.” Now, this sounds like the kind of Christian we should long to be, and the kind of company we need to keep?

  5. CF, thanks for finding more chips of wisdom and posting. They are so good that it reminds me of the curly ones in the bag we all love to fight over. Let us scramble to have the ones you have just served us.

    Debi, good analogy of a tennis game. Man, I use to love to play tennis. I had a condo that overlooked the ocean and a tennis court that I could sit on my balcony and observe others and then run out and play my heart out. Then eat and back to the ocean. You are right we all wanted a skilled player to team up with. What is a match without a way to light it?

  6. Needles, you summed your notes up nicely. But, one thought came to my mind in reading your last sentence.” Now, this sounds like the kind of Christian we should long to be, and the kind of company we need to keep?” How about the kind of company we should long to keep? Be and keep! Hey, Needles, that makes us bee keepers…..

  7. Paul is a good example Needles of one who could sharpen another and make them useful. I like the fact that he is a committed, diligent and passionate gardener because as your footnote scripture says: ‘so I can continue to help all of you grow and experience the joy of your faith’.
    He’s a gardener that cares sbout people-plants…and that is what counts for eternity….”The planting of the LORD, that He may be glorified.’

  8. Yes Sara, “the kind of company we should long to keep” is right. And yes, we learned at retreat that bees are very diligent workers, aren’t they? (and keepers)?

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