Proverbs 5 shares a concept that I took to heart as a young teen. I saw the devastation of broken relationships all around me and I just didn’t want to go there. The teacher in this chapter of Proverbs helps his student draw careful boundaries to help him steer clear of sexual temptations.
Boundaries are a good thing.
Pertaining to adultery he warns “Now then, my sons, listen to me; do not turn aside from what I say. Keep to a path far from her, do not go near the door of her house.” Proverbs 3:7 NIV. (emphases mine) Further on he lists the results of wandering off the path – not a good place. I’m getting the picture of road kill right now, and I don’t want to be that.
Don’t miss the verses with promise and blessing if you stay within the boundaries. “…may you rejoice in the wife of your youth.” and “…may you ever be captivated by her love.” I had to leave out the part about breasts, just because of my own sensibilities. But you get the picture.
I often refer back to the “In the beginning” scriptures for understanding mankind’s losses in God’s perfect creation. In Genesis 3 we see that Adam and Eve crossed the line and were tempted by the desire for wisdom outside of God’s boundaries.
“When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it.” Genesis 3:6 NIV. (emphasis mine) They crossed the boundary and ended up deceived. This wasn’t the kind of wisdom they wanted at all.
The last verse I’ve pondered tonight in Proverbs 5 is “For a man’s ways are in full view of the Lord, and he examines all his paths.” Proverbs 5:21 NIV.
I have to end with a prayer:
Lord, thank you for boundaries. Thank you for forgiveness. Thank you for speaking to us through your Word. I bow my unruly will to yours, and I ask you to help me stay in my boundaries. Thank you!