“Better the poor whose walk is blameless than a fool whose lips are perverse” (v1). Poverty was a terrible thing in ancient times, just like today. Still, the Scripture says that being “a fool” – one who rejects the ways of God – is much worse than poverty. Unfortunately, when we reject God’s path and choose our own (v3), sometimes we blame our “ruin” on God Himself, refusing to accept responsibility. But the proverbs urge us to respect God, and in our obedience, we will find life and contentment (v23).
“Whoever keeps commandments keeps their life, but whoever shows contempt for their ways will die” (v16). God’s straight path is the only way to find the good life we desire.