Breakfast with Solomon - Proverbs 5:14
"I was almost in utter ruin in the midst of the assembly and congregation"
This is the Hebrew word ra which means evil, distress, misery. The idea here is the calamity and misery that comes from violating God's moral boundaries. There are consequences to violating God's law. When we are tempted to follow our impulses into the land of selfishness and harm to others, there will be misery and distress.
I have had the unwelcome assignment of interacting with pastors after they have been found out to be involved in adultery. When the truth of their actions becomes known, the devastation is immense. The few moments of pleasure never are worth the destruction. Their reputation, their marriage, their family, their career, their walk with the Lord, their finances, their friendships – all of these are significantly damaged and will take years to repair, if they are repairable. So when Solomon has the person who is the adulterer say I was almost completely ruined, it is so true.
This is the Hebrew word tavek which means midst. The idea is that we live our lives in the view of a whole host of relationships. Other people surround us and make up our lives. To destroy trust with these various elements that make up our lives is incredibly short-sighted and stupid. Life is Relationships. The shame, guilt, distrust, etc., that will now be a part of the fabric of your life should scream to you: Don't violate the sacred trust you gave to your spouse!
This is the Hebrew word qahal which means assembly, group, congregation.
This is the Hebrew word edah which means congregation.
In the above two words Solomon goes out of his way to emphasize the shame and exposure that you will feel after adultery. He is seeing the web of relationships that make up your life and the ruin that your breaking trust in the one area means to all of the relationships. He is also seeing that you are a part of a synagogue or church that binds you to God and God's moral structure. In the midst of that group there is ruin, condemnation, and destruction.
One of the things people who commit adultery never do, before their plunge into this temptation, is to count the cost of their actions. If a person keeps the consequences of breaking trust firmly before them, they cannot do this sin. This is what Solomon is trying to do with this section of proverbs. DON'T FORGET THERE ARE IMMENSE CONSEQUENCES TO ADULTERY. No matter how alluring it seems, remember the consequences.