Proverbs 6:20 (ESV) … “My son, keep your father’s commandment, and forsake not your mother’s teaching.”
‘Listen’, comes the cry from father to the son yet again, ‘pay attention’. What you need more than anything else is the Word of God. It is vital. It is indispensable. We can think of God’s commands as being like a map, a compass, a torch and provisions for the journey of life, all rolled into one. Without some insight into what God teaches, your whole life will be wasted. Every day that goes by without paying at least some attention to what God says in his Word is a day that is wasted. Each year that goes by without a genuine attempt to get to grips with its teaching is another year wasted. The Bible itself will not save anyone. It is not a lucky charm or talisman, although some treat it in that way. Rather it is as the Word is let loose, as it is applied to life and lived out, that it makes its impact. This is because it is in the Word, in its ‘commands’ and ‘teaching’, that we are corrected and disciplined and shown how to live.
What the Word says can be summarized very simply:
God created this world perfect, but it is now a fallen world of sin and trouble.
We are all born sinners and we will not and cannot come to God as we are.
Nevertheless, God has done something to remedy the situation. He has sent his Son Jesus Christ who has lived and died to save a people for himself.
By trusting in Jesus Christ and repenting from sin we can know forgiveness, holiness and heaven.
It is quite clear. We must read, mark and learn the Scriptures. To fail to acknowledge such things is akin to disobeying ‘your father’s commands’ and forsaking ‘your mother’s teaching’ (the mother is mentioned here again as in 1:8). To ‘keep’ your father’s commands is to hold on to them and obey them. Not to ‘forsake’ your mother’s teaching is never to turn from it (see 3:3; 4:6).
Further, we are told, ‘Bind them upon your heart for ever; fasten them around your neck’ (6:21). These truths must be dearer to us than life itself. The words remind us of 1:9, and especially of the exhortation in 3:3 to ‘Bind them around your neck.’
If we do this then many blessings will follow.