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  • Writer's pictureJack Selcher

Proverbs and Godly Living Skills--Part Six

Updated: Jan 11

a cross on a hill with a brilliant red sky in the background

People demonstrate biblical wisdom by the quality of their advice and lives. We can't trust their advice if they aren’t honest, trustworthy, and generous.

They are like deceitful scammers who entice us to click on their links to supposedly solve some problem. Meanwhile, they are self-serving to the core.

Proverbs and Godly Living Skills--Part Six describes three characteristics of wise people. They are honest, they are trustworthy, and they are generous.

They Are Honest

Wise people don’t claim to be pure and free from sin (Proverbs 20:9). They are honest with others because they are first honest with themselves. They recognize how much they need God’s grace. As they receive it, they pass it on to others (Acts 13:43).

Wise people speak and live the truth. They are honest and don’t lie to or try to cheat us (Proverbs 11:1; 14:5; 16:11; 19:22; 20:23; 21:6; 22:28; 28:10). Bribes don’t influence them (Proverbs 15:27; 17:23).

They don’t testify against, lie about, or try to get even with others for personal gain (Proverbs 24:28–29). They don’t excuse lying by claiming to be joking (Proverbs 26:19).

They don’t flatter others (Proverbs 26:28). They don’t steal from their parents, rob the poor, or exploit the needy in court (Proverbs 22:22; 28:24).

Lying springs from idolatry. People lie because some personal pleasure or benefit is more important to them than God’s honor, will, and plan.2

Wise people imitate God who is honest. “God is an honest judge. He is angry with the wicked every day” (Psalm 7:11 NLT).

They Are Trustworthy

Wise people are trustworthy and don’t betray others’ secrets (Proverbs 11:13, 25:9, 28:20). They keep their promises (Proverbs 25:14). They are trustworthy and reliable messengers and credible witnesses (Proverbs 13:17, 21:28, 25:13). They avoid double standards (Proverbs 20:23).

Wise people are like God who is trustworthy. “Your laws are perfect and completely trustworthy” (Psalm 119:138 NLT). “And the one sitting on the throne said, ‘Look, I am making everything new!’ And then he said to me, ‘Write this down, for what I tell you is trustworthy and true’” (Revelation 21:5 NLT).

They Are Generous

Wise people love giving freely, being generous, and refreshing others (Proverbs 11:24-25; 21:26). They give with discernment. Their first priority is supporting charities that extend God’s kingdom and/or minister to the poor.

Not all requests for money are legitimate. Some giving enables people to continue dysfunctional habits.

During my pastoral ministry in Southcentral Pennsylvania, Love, Inc. screened requests to help would-be donors determine if requests were legitimate. That was enormously helpful.

Some charities spend donors’ money irresponsibly. For instance, “ProPublica has reported on how the Red Cross built just six homes after raising millions for Haiti disaster relief, how St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital keeps billions of dollars in reserves, and how a nonprofit college spent more on marketing than financial aid.”1 Charity Navigator also evaluates charities (

Because of the number of people my blogs reach, I receive many requests for money. I don’t know if the needs are legitimate. I say no to all of them and give to individuals and organizations that are effectively making more and better disciples and helping the poor (Proverbs 14:21, 31; 19:17; 21:13; 22:9; 28:27).

Jesus’ life reflects God’s generosity. “Jew and Gentile are the same in this respect. They have the same Lord, who gives generously to all who call on him” (Romans 10:12 NLT). “And God will generously provide all you need. Then you will always have everything you need and plenty left over to share with others” (2 Corinthians 9:8 NLT). #freechristiandiscipleshipresources #freeevangelismresources #freechristianleadershipresources 

See free spiritual growth resources for Christians at

God has empowered me to write “His Power for Your Weakness—260 Steps Toward Spiritual Strength.” It’s a free devotional discipleship resource. By the end of 2023, pastors will have used it in Malawi, Mozambique, and Zambia to lead people to Christ and teach the basics of Christianity to 2,554 people. I invite you to check it out. 

Photo: King of Kings - Healed Nations Ministries

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