How can we be on our guard in a world full of fools and bad choices? This chapter gives a lot of great insights.
Our choices can guard us – so make sure you are making the right choices about who you spend your time with – not with people who love to fight (vv.1, 14, 19), or gossip (v.4), or mock the poor (v.5). We need to understand that God is with us through the hard times in life, and refining us in this fire (v.3). We have to be on our guard against lies from people with power (v.7), and bribes (vv.8, 23). We need to be very cautious about those who speak poorly of their parents (vv.21, 25), or those who are foolish with their words (vv.27-28).
We DO need to spend time with those who will correct us (v.10) and forgive us (v.9) and be loyal to us (v.17) – but not bail us out of our problems (v.18). Their words are like medicine when we are hurting (v.22).
We are guarded from foolishness by choosing to spend time with the wise, who give us strength, correction, and comfort from God.