Breakfast with Solomon - Proverbs 1:10
"My son, if sinners entice you, do not consent."
This Proverb is crucial advice and insight for every young person. It is also important for everyone at every life stage.
You will be enticed to join sinners; do not go with them. You will be offered an opportunity to be with some "in" group if you will just watch or participate in their sinful behavior.
The lure of acceptance; the seduction of participation; the joy of sin – is a strong magnet. But we must realize that it is like being a fish and lured towards a worm on a hook; in the end, sin always has a hook in it.
When a person is young, the sins that are the most enticing are lust, power, and acceptance by those who are older. When we are older, the sins that are the most alluring are money, ease, and acceptance by those who are younger. At every stage and place we will hear the siren song of those who are near to us who want us to join them in a lifestyle of sin.
The word sinners is the Hebrew word hatta which means to miss the mark. It is like the word hamartia in the New Testament. We might call these the sins of omission – things we should have done but failed to do. This is not so much a willful breaking of God's commandments but instead a failure to do what God has clearly prescribed. What is the positive that God would have you do in various situations? The sinner is the one who does not do these things and usually will do something very selfish instead – even law breaking.
The word entice is the Hebrew word pata which means entice, deceive, persuade. The root verbal idea is to be open, wide, spacious toward a person or thing. It clearly became to entice in that one is open towards a person in a deceptive manner to lure them into a situation.
The idea here seems to be that those who do not live up to God's standards are being open and inviting towards you. They are seeming to accept you and offer connection and all you need to do is participate in their sinfulness.
Solomon is saying that this form of enticement or lure or acceptance will come, and each young person must be ready for it. I have watched many a teen give in to the actions of sin because they felt the peer pressure of acceptance. Hold out for something more significant than acceptance by those who disregard God and righteous authority.
These people will be coming after your children. Have you prepared them? Are you personally prepared for this type of temptation to come at you? What if a classmate asks you to join them in cheating on a test? What if a colleague at work asks you to join them in stealing stuff from work?
Right now is there a group of people who are offering you acceptance with just a little bending of the rules?
Do not give in to their desire to have you come along even just to watch. It is not appropriate and will expose you to stuff that will bring you to the place of living outside of the boundaries of God's will.