My son, attend unto my wisdom, and bow thine ear to my understanding:
Father, do you teach your son wisdom and understanding? Do you instruct him about life’s great dangers – including whorish women? Son, do you listen to your father for his counsel? Do you know he was a man before you were born and wants to help you?
Solomon told his son to listen to his instruction. Without fear or false humility, he told his son that he had wisdom and understanding his son did not have. And he told his son to pay attention and humble himself – “bow thine ear” – for his fatherly advice. Though Solomon was a king, this instruction was between a man and his son. Every father who fears God and loves wisdom will appreciate this example. Father, do it!
What is the context here? It is Solomon warning his son about whorish women, as the rest of the chapter shows (Pr 5:1-23). Solomon told his son the plain truth and danger of loose women, and he commended the sexual and family aspects of a loyal wife. Here is practical wisdom for both fathers and sons to resist a very great temptation and to learn how great fathers instruct their sons. Father, will you do it? Son, will you listen?
There is no place for fear in the father-son relationship. Father, do not be afraid to confront your son, tell him his errors, warn him of coming danger, and give him strong advice to avoid trouble. The coming pain and shame for both of you will far outweigh any discomfort you feel now. You know far more than your son, no matter how arrogant or brash he might be. If he disregards your instruction, you will have done what God expects. The LORD will bless you, and your son will recall the advice later. Count on it.
There is no place for false humility in the father-son relationship. An effeminate concept of false humility is common today. Hate it! Reject it! Your son is not your equal – he is an infant in comparison. Do not apologize for, or soft sell, your superior wisdom. It is not humility to apologize or compromise about your wisdom. It is pride to disregard God’s order and neglect your son’s training. Get a hold of this distinction. Read all of Job 32.
If your son is not a God-fearing success, you very likely compromised his training. It is that simple. Training does work (Pr 22:6,15; 29:15). But you must take the time, prepare an agenda, get with your son, and open your mouth to transfer wisdom from your heart to his ears. Playing checkers at night does not cut it, in spite of what effeminate creeps might croon on Christian radio to silly women (II Tim 3:6-7). Get real! A hormonal son facing this generation’s temptations needs a real father with real warnings in real terms.
Father, you are a man. You know your weakness for beautiful women. You know the pain of odious women. You know the trouble of fornication and adultery. You have endured your own temptations, and you have witnessed failures of others. Tell your son. Tell him plainly. Tell him graphically. Solomon did. Anything less is foolish rebellion.
Son, you are a boy. Your father is a man. Listen to him. He was a man before you were born. He fathered you by a woman before you had being. He knows more about women than you will learn in the next 20 years. He has an interest in your long-term future, which you are not presently able to appreciate. Sit down. Be still. Pay attention.
Reader, God in heaven is your Father by creation, and hopefully again by salvation in Christ. He knows more than you will ever learn on any subject by a factor called infinite. Pay attention. Humble yourself. Despise your own thoughts. Love preaching. Consider your pastor’s sentences. Review the sermons. Read your Bible. Save yourself.