Proverbs 11:11-15
Prov 11:11 (KJB)
By the blessing of the upright the city is exalted: but it is overthrown by the mouth of the wicked.
Exalted - Rise or to be high
Overthrown - Tear down
When the righteous rule in a city or even a country, that city will become exalted. That is, the merchants will find it a good place to do business and the people will seek it out as a good place to live and raise a family. The economy will become good and prosperity will be found. However, when the wicked rule a city, it normally functions on corruption. When the rulers are wicked, it trickles down to the citizens. Businesses will move out and people will move out to protect their families from the corruption. This will cause the city to literally be torn down because with many abandoned buildings, for the protection of the citizenry, they must be torn down. Not only do we see this verse in a physical context, but we see it in a spiritual context. When saved men are in charge of a local church, it will prosper spiritually because the truths of God’s word will be preached and the people will grow in the faith. If an unbeliever rules in a church, it becomes an empty building because there is no Gospel truth being preached and that keeps the congregation in darkness. This is why we must never vote in an unbeliever for any office in a church, because there deadness will influence others and will tear down that assembly.
Prov 11:12 (KJB)
He that is void of wisdom despiseth his neighbour: but a man of understanding holdeth his peace.
He that is void - Lacking
Normally what comes out of the mouth is representative of what is in the heart. The person who hates his neighbor, and that does not only mean the one who lives next door, but it means other people in general. This person is definitely showing that he lacks wisdom, that is, he is lacking salvation in his life. A person that is consistently denigrating another shows that they have a heart of bitterness and it is being manifested with their mouth. On the other hand, the man who has understanding will learn to hold his peace, even in situations in which he may be accused of something because many words can lead to a conflict which could end up worse than just a verbal exchange. The wise man knows that by holding his tongue, he will put out the fire and hopefully it will end the argument. Then, when things cool down, he can approach his neighbor and hopefully work things out.
Prov 11:13 (KJB)
A talebearer revealeth secrets: but he that is of a faithful spirit concealeth the matter.
Talebearer - Slanderer
Concealeth - To hide or cover over
One of the most unwise things a person can do is to trust confidential information to one who is a known gossiper. Whenever these people come across information, they can hardly wait to pass it on to anyone who will listen. Normally the gossiper is one who likes to feel superior, since their life is basically lived to malign others. Gossip never builds anyone up or it never speaks nice of someone but it is always cutting someone down and the one who brings the gossip, is the one who sees themselves superior because after all, “they would never do such things.” The true believer, who possesses a faithful spirit will never pass on confidential information to anyone. They will conceal it because the person who is being spoken about probably has enough problems to overwhelm them and to add gossip to someone’s situation, is cruel since it does not help the situation only causes more pain. The saved person shows they are of a different spirit by holding any information in confidence. This verse should be posted at the door of every church because many churches are hotbeds of gossip instead of Gospel.
Prov 11:14 (KJB)
Where no counsel is, the people fall: but in the multitude of counsellors there is safety.
Counsel - Guidance
Fall - Cast down or even divided
Multitude - Abundance
Many times a situation comes into our lives or our vocation and it seems overwhelming to us and if we refuse to ask for counsel from others we may find ourselves floundering. Every person needs guidance at one time or another and if we refuse it, we will fall. Those who are filled with pride will never ask counsel of other people or if they receive it, they will reject it. On the other hand, if we do seek the counsel of others, it shows that we have a humble spirit and are more eager to find truth or seek a solution to a situation than feed our own pride. As Christians, we must be very careful to seek out Godly counsellors because the philosophy of the world differs dramatically from that of Biblical Christianity. There is also another aspect to this verse, that those who try to live without seeking the counsel and wisdom of the Bible are setting themselves up for a fall. Since the biblical way of understanding the Bible is to compare Scripture with Scripture, we will find a multitude of counsel in the Bible on any subject or situation we may be facing. It is wise to know that the Bible contains the mind of God and that we may pull from its wisdom at any time without restraint.
Prov 11:15 (KJB)
He that is surety for a stranger shall smart for it: and he that hateth suretiship is sure.
Sure - Secure
Smart - Disaster
Surety and Suretiship - Security or a pledge
Here is a warning that we should never co-sign a loan for people because eventually we are going to co-sign for a bad loan and we will be held liable for that repayment. The one who does not co-sign loans, never has to worry about a bill collector showing up at his house to ask for payment or even to take his personal possessions until the loan is paid or in lieu of the payment. This verse has a deeper meaning than just warning against co-signing loans. As Christians, we must never assure someone that they are saved because they go to a certain church or follow a certain teacher. We can never give assurance of salvation because we do not know a person’s heart. It is important that we realize this and if a person is saved, their lifestyle will eventually reveal it. We may be giving someone false assurance that they are saved when they are not, so it is better not to make those statements to people of questionable religious links. If we do not adopt this practice, then we never have to worry we have given someone false assurance.