Breakfast with Solomon - Proverbs 2:12
"To deliver you from the way of evil, from the man who speaks perverse things"
In this section, Solomon continues to speak of the wonders of wisdom and what it will do if it is allowed full entrance into your life. In this proverb, he notes that it will deliver or save you from two things that are very good to be saved from – the way of evil and the person who speaks perverse things. It is important to look at the reverse of this proverb to see its import. If you are not wise and do not look for the triple-win choices and actions, then you will be most likely seduced by the way of evil with no way to break free. You will believe the person who tells you of twisted and bizarre things and move in that direction. A young person sets the course of their life, and they need to not be sucked into these problems.
What is the way of evil and the speaking of perverse things? And it is not just young people who need to be careful of these two dangers.
The word perversity is the Hebrew word tahpuka which is used only nine times in the Scriptures and eight times here in Proverbs. It is from the root hapak which means to turn, to overturn. It is translated perversity in the NASB and forwardness in the KJV. The idea is that of twistedness. It is the nature of festering evil to twist that which is righteous into something else; to use something in a way that was not its intended purpose. Evil is a twist of that which is good. Marriage is good; adultery is a twist – physical intimacy without the safety and emotional connectedness of commitment. Those who are evil continue twisting sexual pleasure to produce vile behaviors. Work is good; stealing is a twist – achieving gain without work. There are forms of stealing that involve elaborate schemes and deception so that the person doesn't even know they have been robbed. Relationships built on truth are good and enduring. Lying and deception is a twist – building a relationship on lies, deceit, fraud. In each of the directions of the Ten Commandments there are the ways of evil which become more twisted the further one gets from God's righteousness.
When one speaks perverse things, it means that the person is describing the twisted pleasures of those who have moved past God's moral boundaries. Usually they are speaking them to draw a person after them. A young person can be susceptible to this type of twisted speech. "Have you ever heard of...” “Oh yeah, I tried it. It was cool."
It is important to note at this point that the way of evil is the way of increasing selfishness. When selfishness moves beyond the borders of God's standards, it becomes evil because it becomes destructive to the individual, those around them, and the society as a whole. The allure of the way of evil is that it makes you king of your life completely. Whatever you want to do, you can do. Go for it. It fails to realize that you live in God's universe in which you don't get to pick the consequences for your actions. God picked them a long time ago. Selfishness is a destructive force in God's universe. God never designed people to interact based upon it. It messes things up and the stronger the selfishness, the worse it gets.
If someone starts telling you about some bizarre thing that you should try, back up and realize that they are probably deep into the way of evil. Access the wisdom of the triple-win. Does this give God glory, will others win, and is there a long-term win in this for me?