Words of Truth from the Proverbs
1 The words of King Lemuel, the utterance which his mother taught him: 2 What, my son? And what, son of my womb? And what, son of my vows? 3 Do not give your strength to women, nor your ways to that which destroys kings.
Many of us are familiar with Proverbs 31. It speaks of that model wife and mother that seems so hard to live up to. I don’t want to take anything from the truths of those words, but we also need to see that this is the ideal, not the normal. But even before we get to the section dealing with this ideal woman, the opening words of the 31st Proverbs are simple words of instruction from the mother of the King to the King himself.
If we are to understand the passage correctly we need to see that these are the words of Bathsheba to her son Solomon, who is being addressed as King Lemuel or having the meaning “of, from or belonging to God”.
Verse 2 reiterates the fact that it is the King’s mother who is giving these words. It appears to be words from deep in her heart, words of concern and caution to her son dealing with the responsibilities he has as King. And the first warning she has is the warning about not giving his strength to women.
If, as we believe this is Bathsheba, she speaks as a woman of experience when you consider the ramifications of David’s sin with her while she was yet married to Uriah the Hittite. David nearly destroyed himself and his kingdom because of the weakness of his flesh in reference to sexual sins.
Although God forgave David of his sin after he repented and sought God’s forgiveness. You can read Psalm 51 to get a better idea of David’s brokenness before the Lord.
God forgave him, but there were a tremendous amount of consequences he had to pay throughout the rest of his life due to him giving his strength to women, (and his) ways to that which destroys kings.
These are words written directly to the King, but they are words that should impact all of our lives.