By Toni Ford
The Book of Proverbs is, “the book of wisdom,” and has often been referred to as a “collection of collections.” Full of Biblical wisdom, Proverbs also raises questions of values, moral behavior, the meaning of human life and righteous conduct. King Solomon, the wisest, wealthiest, and most powerful man in history, wrote 29 of the 31 chapters in this book. A man named Agur (whose name means “collector”) wrote chapter 30 and King Lemuel wrote chapter 31.
In Proverbs 30 we find Agur’s collection of wise sayings. In verses 24-28, Agur uses four of the smallest creatures on earth to illustrate wisdom. These animals haven’t changed even today and nor have their lessons on wisdom.
Proverbs 30:24-28 (Passion Translation) says, “The earth has four creatures that are very small but very wise: The feeble ant has little strength, yet look how it diligently gathers its food in the summer to last throughout the winter. The delicate rock badger isn’t all that strong, yet look how it makes a secure home, nestled in the rocks. The locusts have no king to lead them, yet they cooperate as they move forward by bands. And the small lizard is easy to catch as it clings to the walls with its hands, yet it can be found inside a king’s palace.”
The lessons Agur shares from these creatures is still applicable for us today. Let’s look at each one.
The Ant. Although extremely small and with little strength, this creature stores up its food in the summer in preparation for winter. The ant prepares ahead and works today for tomorrow. How should I be preparing spiritually, emotionally, financially and physically for the seasons ahead? Wisdom is working today in preparation for tomorrow.
The Rock Badger. This creature is a bit larger than a prairie dog, about the size of a groundhog. They usually are gray, the color of the rocks, which makes them very hard to see when they are sunning on a rock. When predators come, the rock badger runs into the crag or hole of a rock for protection. One thing about rock badgers – they know where their security lies. A rock badger knows that when it wanders away from the rock, it becomes vulnerable to the enemy. Is my security in the Lord or in things of this world? Wisdom is daily placing my security in the Lord and letting Him be my protection.
The Locust. This creature is not very powerful alone; however, the locust knows that its power comes from being in community with other locusts. When that occurs, they are able to topple kingdoms (Revelation 9). Am I engaged and active with a community of believers? Wisdom is realizing our need for community and being active within that community.
The Lizard. This creature “is easy to catch, yet it can be found inside a king’s palace.” Lizards are small, slippery, and not the most beautiful creature, yet they can be found in the presence of the king. Although there is an incongruity to this picture, the lizard represents grace. Grace is often incongruous or out of place. Where do I need to have more grace towards a person or a situation? Wisdom is seeing others through the lenses of God’s grace.
Lord, we ask you to help us learn and apply the lessons on wisdom that we have learned from the ant, rock badger, locust and lizard. Thank you for these truths that never change!
If you would like for me to join you in prayer please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I would love to pray for you.