Proverbs 31: Week 28 | The Wolfe Notes

Welcome to week twenty-eight of our Proverbs 31 journey. This week we consider the fields in our lives and the effort required to plant vineyards. If you'd like to return to one of our previous stops, let our "Wolfe Notes" guide you. 

  • In January we examined our value with the help of Proverbs 31 verses 10 and 29.
  • In February we learned what uplifting means by looking at Proverbs 31:11 and 23.
  • In March, we considered the virtue of respect by studying Proverbs 31:12 and 28.
  • In April, we trained to be hardworking with Proverbs 31:13 and 19 as our instructors.
  • In May, we saw what it takes to be resourceful by examining Proverbs 31:14 and 21. 
  • In June, we developed our caring muscle by exercising Proverbs 31:15 and 22.
  • In July, we'll practice being savvy with help from Proverbs 31:16 and 27.
If you're ready to travel with us, welcome! Grab your July calendar with daily activities, the lamp for your feet (the Bible), and let's get going! We're journeying through the concluding poem of Proverbs and we're so glad you decided to walk along this road with us! Imagine that as we walk, we're talking about the daily activities. Our side of the discussion is outlined below. What would you add? How would you challenge us? (Ideas that are our thoughts alone are designated with an *.)

*As Christ's Bride apply Proverbs 31:16.
*Look at Roles through a Proverbs 31:16 lens.
*Godly Wisdom What this verse reveals about God's character.
*Application of Proverbs 31:16 to your past, present, and future hopes.
Cross References of Proverbs 31:16
*"Tend" your vineyard with Bethel.
Proverbs 31:27 Noting key words and phrases.

*As Christ's Bride

Apply Proverbs 31:16.

  • Leads by choosing us, taking responsibility for us, unifying Himself with us, approaching God on our behalf, working diligently and persistently to aid us in abundant production of good fruits.
  • Loves by esteeming our value highly and willingly paying it, sacrificing Himself for our benefit, caring about our outcomes, and remaining faithful to us.

In response, we, The Church (Christ's Bride):
  • Submit by acknowledging we were chosen, accepting His leadership, willingly working with Him to achieve His desired end, asking for His help, and graciously accepting His efforts to improve us and work through us.
  • Respect by esteeming Him highly, honoring the cost He paid for us, openly testifying to the ways our lives have changed because of Him, showing confidence in His leadership, and remaining faithful to Him.

*Look at Roles

Through a Proverbs 31:16 lens.

  • Leads his wife by choosing her, taking responsibility for her, unifying himself to her, approaching God on her behalf, working diligently and persistently to aid her in abundant production of good fruits.
  • Loves his wife by esteeming her value highly and willingly showing it, sacrificing himself for her benefit, caring about her outcome, and remaining faithful to her.

In response, a Helper:
  • Submits to her husband by acknowledging she was chosen, accepting his leadership, willingly working with him to achieve his desired end, asking for his help, and graciously accepting his efforts to improve her and work with her.
  • Respects her husband by esteeming him highly, honoring the admiration he shows her, openly testifying to the positive ways her life has changed because of him, showing confidence in his leadership, and remaining faithful to him.

*Godly Wisdom

What this verse reveals about God's character.
  • He knew what risk He was taking when He chose you, and He took it.
  • He thinks you are worth the investment.
  • He works tirelessly, endlessly, and skillfully to refine you.
  • He longs for you to remain connected to Him.
  • He provides you with all you need and more.


Of Proverbs 31:16 to your past, present, and future hopes.
  • In the past, I STRUGGLED with this verse. Must a virtuous woman buy land and plant vineyards? I am not the business-minded, investment-savvy, dig-in-the-dirt type, so I guess I'm not virtuous.
  • Now, I am ENCOURAGED. This verse acts as a decision-making checklist: 1) Consider carefully before you commit. 2) Know the value of your commitment and be willing to pay it. Weigh the investment of your time, resources, and talents. 3) Work persistently, skillfully, and tirelessly at your commitment. 4) Stay rooted in God and watch to see what He grows from your faithfulness. 5) Recognize and accept God's pruning, knowing it gives space for a better harvest.
  • In the future, I hope to REMINISCE and see the many vineyards God's grown as I worked alongside Him and CONTINUE to plant more.

Cross References

 Of Proverbs 31:16

Song of Solomon 8:12 KJV: My vineyard, which is mine, is before me: thou, O Solomon, must have a thousand, and those that keep the fruit thereof two hundred.
  • Related Verses 
    • Proverbs 27:18 NLT: As workers who tend a fig tree are allowed to eat the fruit, so workers who protect their employer's interests will be rewarded. (* As we tend our "vineyards" we benefit from its yield. And, in faithfully serving God, we will be honored.)
    • Song of Solomon 8:13 NKJV: You who dwell in the gardens, The companions listen for your voice - Let me hear it! (*As we work alongside God in our "vineyards", others listen to what we say - the worship and encouragement that results from being rooted and nourished by The Keeper of the Vineyard. God loves to hear our voices singing praises to His name.)
    • I Corinthians 6:20 KJV: For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's. (*We, the field God bought, are to live to bring glory to God, our reasonable service.)
  • Commentaries
    • Gill: God distinguishes His Church as separate and preferred to all others; He has exact knowledge of every vine within and cares deeply for it; The Church, likewise, cares and guards God's vineyard; "O Solomon" refers to Christ. The Church is saying Christ should receive all he desires and demands, a full revenue of glory from His people; it is an honor to maintain and minister to Christ's vineyard. 
    • Barnes: The bride willingly gave her vineyard to Solomon, which is his due. She is now entirely his - but, let the faithful keepers earn their due. (*Reminds me of Proverbs 31:15, where the virtuous woman rises early to give a portion to her maidens)
    • Matthew Poole: The clause, "which is mine", emphatically shows Christ's superior claim to His vineyard, the church, over Solomon's claim because Christ's vineyard was purchased by blood, not money, and lasts eternally, not for merely a lifetime. "Is before me", shows that Christ personally tends His vineyard, unlike Solomon who hires gardeners. Thus, the majority of the revenue is due to Christ, although the workers should not be forgotten.
  • Hebrew: My garden (vineyard) faces a thousand for you, Solomon, a hundred to guard (cherish) fruit.
  • Wolfe Stew Version: My vineyard (my body, heart, soul, and mind) is Yours, Christ. All fruit borne therein I offer to You, knowing in your grace and mercy you'll watch over those who cherish and nurture me.
Matthew 13:44 KJV: Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto treasure hid in a field; the which when a man hath found, he hideth, and for JOY thereof goeth and selleth all that he hath, and buyeth that field.
  • Related Verses:
    • Proverbs 23:23 KJV: Buy the truth, and sell it not; also wisdom, and instruction, and understanding. (*Once you know the truth, wisdom, instruction, and understanding only the kingdom of heaven can bring, you're all in and have no desire to sell it.)
    • Matthew 19:21 NLT: Jesus told him, "If you want to be perfect, go and sell all your possessions and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me." (*Once you realize the value in the kingdom of heaven, you realize no earthly possession holds value.)
    • Revelation 3:18 KJV: I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see. (*Invest in sure things: a God who refines you to perfection, who gives you the kingdom, who dresses you in righteousness, and reveals truth.)
  • Commentaries: 
    • Gill: The treasure here is the Gospel, consisting of rich truths, valuable blessings, precious promises, and rich revelations of God, Christ, and His Kingdom. This Gospel was and is hid - from the Old Testament Saints, from the Gentile world for a time, and from the lost entirely. The field here is the Scriptures in which the Gospel lies hidden, and we are to search them to find God's treasures through reading, hearing, prayer, and meditation. After finding these treasures we guard them in our heart because they bring us great JOY. A JOY so abundant, that we understand nothing else on earth matters and we turn our interests to attainment of more Godly treasures.
    • Pulpit: This treasure was found by chance. It was near to the man, and he never noticed it. If a man found treasure in a field, then bought the field, that treasure would then belong to him. So, after finding the treasure, he hid it so no one else would know the value of the field.
  • Greek: The realm of eternity (sky, happiness, power, the Gospel) exists like a storehouse for precious things concealed (hidden, laid up) in a field (the country, a farm). A human (man) found that (who, which, what) concealed (hid, laid up) and from (away from) the joy (gladness, source of joy) went away (departed) and sold (exchanged, bartered) all (the whole, every kind of) possessions (holdings) and bought (went to market, purchased, redeemed) that field (country, farm).
  • Wolfe Stew Version: To put it another way, God's kingdom is like discovering what you most desire when and where you least expect it. Now found, you hold it close. Because of the JOY it brings, you willingly surrender everything you thought you wanted and instead invest fully in tending vineyards with your Heavenly Father.


Your vineyard with Bethel.

Thoughts this song conveys to me:
  • He sees from beginning to end and knows what's better for me than I do. ("In the landscape of my life", "From the start until the ending", "Cause You know better")
  • He takes His time with me because He cares. ("You don't rush through any season", "You always take your time," "A careful hand, a gentle guide", "And I will trust Your timing")
  • He recognizes that I need to change when I don't think I do. ("You take what's dead away and You prune what's running wild", "break up the fallow ground, cut back the overgrown)
  • His work is made easier when I surrender. ("So, be the gardener of my soul", "And I won't shy away, I will let the branches fall", "So what You want can stay and what You love can grow", "Have Your way in me", "Let it grow", "I'll remain in You; You'll remain in me")
  • He's never done working, even when I think He is. ("Through the winter, I'm still alive", "You'll sustain what You have started", "And You'll teach me to abide")
  • His work prepares me to face challenges. ("What You've planted in the dirt is ever reaching to the light", "You prepare me for darkened times")
*Connections: This song reminds me of The Shack by William Paul Young. In the book, our souls are envisioned as a garden maintained by the Holy Spirit.

Proverbs 31:27

Noting key words and phrases.
She looketh well / to the ways / of her household, / and eateth not / the bread of idleness.

Key Words: looks, ways, household, eat, bread, idleness 


Final Thoughts

At the beginning of this week, I was ready to roll my sleeves up and get busy digging in the dirt alongside Jesus. By week's end, I found myself in a state of surrender. It's not my effort, my sacrifice, my plan, it's His. I'm still rolling up my sleeves and ready to dig in, but I'm keeping my mind on His effort, His sacrifice, His plan.

Help me, Father, to rest contently in the JOYful labor of knowing You. You who are always at work within me to train my will and actions to produce fruit that pleases You. I'm watching, waiting, and trusting in you to transform this lowly seed into part of Your glorious vineyard.

Growing with You,

Ready for Week 29?

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