Proverbs 27:17-22

The heart reflects a person’s true nature.
v.17 Iron sharpens iron. Just as iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. Much wisdom arises from the critical interaction with a good friend (both encouragement and correction). “Sharpens” refers to the process of molding and shaping one’s character.
v.18 Fig tree. Faithful servants will eat of the fruit of their labors (1 Cor 9:7-10). He who serves his master well will be honored (Mt 25:21).
v.19 Reflection. As clear water reflects the face, so the heart of a man reflects the man — and the Lord weighs the heart (21:2). See Mt 5:8.
v.20 Desire. As death and destruction (here personifying the destiny of the dead) are never satisfied, so the desires of man are never satisfied. We never have our fill of money, power, or pleasure. No one dies with half of what they wanted.
v.21 The furnace. The furnace tests silver and gold (17:3), so also man is tested by praise (whether it results in pride or humility). The furnace is used to purify silver and gold by heat. Likewise praise is used to reveal a person’s character.
v.22 Grind to a pulp. Folly is so deeply rooted in the character of a fool, that it is unaffected even if you grind him to a pulp (the idea is severe physical punishment).

Read Proverbs 27:17-22

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