Proverbs 31: Week Forty-Six | The Wolfe Notes

Welcome to week forty-six of our Proverbs 31 journey. In these notes, we think about how to speak with wisdom and truth and consider that we rise to glorify God. 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 practiced being savvy with help from Proverbs 31:16 and 27.
  • In August, we witnessed exemplary behavior outlined in Proverbs 31:18 and 31.
  • In September, we found what being necessary looks like from Proverbs 31:20 and 24.
  • In October, we exercised strength in Jesus from Proverbs 31:17 and 25.
  • In November, we are rehearsing being well-spoken by looking to Proverbs 31:26 and 28.
If you're ready to travel with us, welcome! Grab your November 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 *.)

Honey in a jar with a dipper posed above. Text overlay quotes Proverbs 31:28

*Applications to the past, present, and future.
Cross References of Proverbs 31:26
*Top 3 revelations from Proverbs 31:26.
Proverbs 31:28 noting key words and phrases.
*Initial Interpretation before consulting other sources.
What is Weird? Researching something odd about this verse.
About Arise from various sources.


To the past, present, and future.
  • In the past, I regarded this verse TRIVIALLY. Be wise and kind - good rules for humankind. It could go on a bumper sticker.
  • Currently, I regard this verse HEAVILY. This is how I need to live my life. The idea, simple. The follow through, challenging. His words, not mine. His desires, not my own. And I struggle. Recently I was spiraling because I didn't get my to-do list done. Amid my tirade, the Mr. said, 'You're not God, Elizabeth. You are not made to be perfect - to do everything, to accomplish every task, (*to say all the right things,) and to do it perfectly. Let Him work and you, be you. Do what you can do." and it stopped me in my tracks. He's right. I'm not God. I need to let go of my to-do list and rest knowing I'm a part of His by doing (and saying) what I can in each moment that points to Him.
  • In the future, I hope to GROW in wisdom and kindness so that others may be drawn to Him too.

Cross References 

Of Proverbs 31:26
Proverbs 10:31: The mouth of the just bringeth forth wisdom: but the froward tongue shall be cut out.

  • *Initial Interpretation: Walk with God and speak His truths: if you speak your own words and not His they will fade (or lead to destruction).  Isaiah 40:8 KJV "The grass withereth, the flower fadeth, but the word of our God shall stand for ever."
  • Commentaries:
    • The mouth of the just bringeth forth wisdom: 
      • Words are the fruit of the lips (Isaiah 57:19) - Ellicot 
      • Freely, abundantly, constantly wise counsel flows - Poole 
      • ...and his tongue speaks justice." Psalm 37:30 - Gill 
    • but the froward tongue shall be cut out: 
      • "[Discretion and understanding will deliver] thee from the way of the evil man, from the man that speaketh froward things; Proverbs 2:11-12 - Pulpit
      • ...and the froward mouth, do I hate Proverbs 8:13 - Pulpit 
      • "But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment." Matthew 12:36 - Ellicot
      • The sins of the tongue will be severely judged because they do mischief to others and are signs of an evil mind within - Ellicot
      • An unprofitable tree produces things contrary to God and good men - Gill
      • "And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: therefore every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire." Matt 3:10; Luke 13:7 - Pulpit
  • *Conclusions: Many of these commentators suppose the Proverbs identifies two separate people. Yet it might be one person at various times. Might it show the process of God working within to prune the counsel that does not come from Him as He prunes the vine (John 15:2)? It's good to know that in the end, His words are the ones that remain. Wisdom / the church / a godly wife each depicts the first example and will bring wisdom whenever they speak.
Proverbs 16:24: Pleasant words are as an honeycomb, sweet to the soul, and health to the bones.

  • *Initial Interpretation: Kind words build the soul and body
  • Hebrew: 
    • Pleasant (noam) here can also mean agreeableness, delight, suitable, splendor, and grace but not kind. *Kindness leads to God. This word encourages speech that maintains a positive atmosphere. Words that are honestly complimentary, encourage forgiveness, and seek genuine connection.
    • Soul (lannepes) can also mean desire, passion, appetite
    • Healing (umarpe) can also mean deliverance
  • Commentaries: 
    • Honey was a luxury and a medicine. - Barnes
    • The Gospel doctrines are like honey. - Gill
    • "More to be desired are [the fear and judgments of the Lord] than gold, yea, than much fine gold: sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb" Psalm 19:9-10 - Pulpit
    • Christ's words cure diseases of the mind and heal wounded spirits. (I Samuel 14:27) - Gill 
  • *Conclusions: 
    • Spiritually: Words about Christ, the Good News of the Gospel, satisfies our longings and delivers our bodies from destruction.
    • Practically: Honest compliments, encouraging truths, ready forgiveness, and genuine connections excite our souls and cure our wounds.
    • Relationally: Edify each other with what you say, it does a lot of good - it makes you feel good inside (emotionally) and heals you on the outside (actions).

*Top 3

Revelations from Proverbs 31:26.

  1.  If I rely on my own words, I'm not being wise.
  2. Sometimes the wise option is to keep my mouth closed.
  3. The law of kindness is God's law because it leads to ultimate kindness.

Proverbs 31:28

Noting key words and phrases.

Her children arise up and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her.

Key Words: children, husband, arise up, call her, praises, blessed.

*Initial Interpretation

 Before consulting other sources.

Due to her conduct and service, the people she guides and those intimately committed to her speak highly of her.

What is Weird?

Researching something odd about this verse.

Why would children call their mother blessed? When we typically call someone blessed, aren't we saying that a lot of good comes to them, or they are lucky? If that's true, isn't this really a backhanded compliment for themselves? "Our mom is so blessed. Just look at how great we are." It seems like a card we might have given our own mother.

Biblical Definitions of Blessed
  • Happiness produced by some experience of God's favor, i.e. divine kindness, mercy, or goodness. (Dr. David Ireland)
  • An understanding of what is truly good in our lives. (Bible Ref)
  • Ashar - Hebrew for "to go straight" (Bible Hub)
Who is Blessed
  • We are. (Ephesians 1:3)
  • Those who understand their spirit is deficient, mourn, embrace meekness, hunger and thirst for righteousness, show mercy, are pure in heart, make peace with all men, experience persecution because of righteousness, are reviled, persecuted, and slandered for Jesus' cause. (Matthew 5:3-12)
Why are We Blessed
  • Because God is good and so His goodness can spin outward to affect the entire world. Psalm 67 reveals God's vision for His blessing. (
  • To be a blessing. Genesis 12:2
*Conclusion: I don't think the children are saying, "You're so lucky to have us, Mom!", but rather "Truly God's hand is on her. Though she's experienced trials and temptations, she remains on the straight path to righteousness by relying on Him because she knows He's the only good thing. And we, her children, know this to be true because we've received the blessings that poured out from her." They recognize that by staying firmly in the TRUTH, she blesses others by extending God's GRACE.

About Arise

From various sources.

Hebrew from Bible Hub
  • qum: to arise, stand up, stand
  • Other uses: accomplished, carry, certainly help, confirm, fulfill, grown, observed, prepared, rouse, strengthen, succeed\
  • In Proverbs 31:28: in preparation to a formal speech
  • *Conclusions: Her children, the works of her hands, stand to testify of the growth, fulfillment, preparation, accomplishments achieved, and success earned, because of her.
Definition from Merriam-Webster
  1. to begin to occur or to exist: to come into being or to attention (*When people start noticing her children - the works of her hands - they point back to her.)
  2. to get up or stand up (*We are not ashamed. Romans 1:16)
  3. to move upward, ascend (*We'll sing your praises forever, to eternity. Psalm 150)
Article by Casey Brewer from Kingdom at Work 
  • Arise is a kingdom leader's primary role
  • Arise in scripture is almost always followed by a measurable, tangible action word:
  • In each of these examples, they were responsible for the action. But in Isaiah 60:1, "Arise!" is used in a different way.
    • Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the LORD is risen upon thee.
    • Here, God does the action. The only way for us to shine is through His glory. (*In response, we arise, and call Him blessed - pointing others to His glory.)
    • At this point in Isaiah, God's people were wrecked, identity wise and completely unqualified to shine. But:
    • We shift from advancing our own kingdom to advancing God's kingdom when we arise and take our place so that God's glory arises (*is accomplished, carried out, strengthened, certainly helpful, grown, preparing, successful) over us and through us.
    • "He believes in me when I can't believe in myself. So, I respond to His belief when I can't believe on my own, and He creates the thing He believes in." - Dr. E. Stanley Jones
    • *How can we not call Him blessed when from nothing He creates everything - even in us?
Scripture from Open Bible
  • Isaiah 60:1 KJV: Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the LORD is risen upon thee.
  • Acts 22:16 KJV: And now why tarriest thou? arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord.
  • Malachi 4:2 KJV: But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall.
  • Isaiah 41:10 KJV: Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.
  • Matthew 28:6 KJV: He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay.
  • *Conclusions: ARISE is an action step that demonstrates faith. Faith that God will do the rest. When her (Wisdom's; the Church's; the godly wife's) children arise, they display their faith in her and point to her glory.

Final Thoughts

Because my hands train and labor to bring Him glory, my children, investments, and efforts will also arise, shine, and give God glory. Not by my power, but by His. My action is to habitually arise and call Him blessed in everything I do. That is both wisdom and instruction in the law of kindness. 

Arise, children of the Most High God, so that His glory can shine upon you and through you.

Growing with You,

Ready for Week 47?

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