Taunting Cobras

Some cold-sober wisdom from God through Peter, Paul, and Solomon:

“Beloved, I exhort you as pilgrims and strangers to abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul” (1 Peter 2:11).

“For, ‘Do not commit adultery,’ ‘do not murder,’ ‘do not steal,’ do not bear false witness, ‘do not lust,’ and if there is any other commandment, in this word it is summed up, in the words, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ Love does not work evil to the neighbor. Then love is the fulfillment of Law. Also this, knowing the time, that it is now the hour for you to be aroused from sleep, for now our salvation is nearer than when we believed. The night is far gone, and the day has drawn near; then let us cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the weapons of the light. Let us walk becomingly, as in the day, not in carousings and drunkennesses, not in co-habitation and lustful acts, not in fighting and envy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not make forethought of the flesh, for its lusts” (Romans 13:9-14).

“For Jehovah gives wisdom; out of His mouth are knowledge and understanding. He lays up sound wisdom for the upright; He is a shield to the ones who walk in integrity, to guard the paths of judgment, and He protects the way of His saints. Then you shall understand righteousness and judgment and honesty, yea, every good path. When wisdom enters into your heart, and knowledge is pleasant to your soul, discretion shall keep you, understanding shall watch over you, to deliver you from the evil way, from the man who speaks perverse things, those who leave the paths of uprightness to walk in the ways of darkness, who rejoice to do evil, they delight in the perversities of the wicked, whose paths are crooked, who are devious in their tracks; these will deliver you from the strange woman, from the foreigner who flatters with her words, who forsakes the guide of her youth and forgets the covenant of her God. For her house leads down to death, and her tracks to the departed spirits. All going in to her do not return, nor do they reach the ways of life. Then you may walk in the ways of the good and keep the ways of the righteous. For the upright shall live in the land, and the perfect shall remain in it. But the wicked shall be cut off from the earth, and the transgressors shall be rooted out of it” (Proverbs 2:6-22).

“My son, pay attention to my wisdom; stretch your ear to my understanding; so that you may keep judgment, and your lips may keep knowledge. For the lips of a strange woman drip honey, and her palate is sweeter than oil, but afterwards, she is bitter as wormwood, sharp as a sword of mouths; her feet go down to death; her steps take hold on hell, lest you should meditate on the path of life, her tracks are movable, you cannot know them. Then hear me now, O sons, and do not depart from the words of my mouth. Remove your ways far from her, and do not come near to the door of her house, lest you give your honor to others, and your years to the cruel; that strangers not be filled with your strength, and your labors be in the house of an alien, and you moan when your end comes, when your flesh and muscle are eaten away; and say, How I have hated instruction, and my heart despised correction; and I have not heard the voice of my teachers, nor stretched my ear to those instructing me” (Proverbs 5:1-13).

“For the commandment is a lamp, and the law a light; and reproofs of instruction are a way of life, to keep you from the evil woman, from the flattery of the tongue of the strange woman. Do not lust after her beauty in your heart, and do not let her take you with her eyelids” (Proverbs 6:23-25).

“My son, keep my words and store up my commands within you. Keep my commands and live, and my law as the pupil of your eye. Tie them on your fingers; write them on the tablet of your heart. Say to wisdom, You are my sister, and call understanding your kinsman, so that they may keep you from the strange woman, from the alien with her flattering words. For I looked through my lattice, at the window of my house, and I saw among the simple ones, I observed among the sons a young man lacking heart, passing through the street near her corner; and he went the way to her house, in the twilight, in the evening, in the black and darkness of night. And, behold, a woman came to meet him, with a harlot’s dress, and a guarded heart; she is loud and stubborn; her feet do not rest in her own house. At this time she is outside, now in the streets, and she lies in wait at every corner; and she seizes him and kisses him; she hardens her face and says to him, Sacrifices of peace offerings are on me, today I have completed my vows; so I came out to meet you, earnestly to seek your face, and I have found you. I have spread my couch with coverings, with striped cloths of Egyptian linen. I have sprinkled my bed with myrrh, aloes and cinnamon. Come, let us take our fill of love until the morning, let us delight ourselves with caresses. For my husband is not at his house; he is going in the way, far away. He has taken a bag of silver in his hand; at the day of the full moon he will enter his house. With the sum of her persuasion she turned him aside; with the flattering of her lips she forced him. He goes after her immediately, as an ox goes to the slaughter; or as one in fetters goes to the correction of a fool, until an arrow strikes through his liver, as a bird hastens to the snare, and not knowing that it is for his soul. Now, then, listen to me, O sons, and attend to the words of my mouth: Do not let your heart turn aside to her ways; do not go astray in her paths. For many are the wounded she has caused to fall; and plentiful all her slain ones. The ways of Sheol are in her house, leading down to the rooms of death” (Proverbs 7:1-27).