The ear that hears the rebukes of life will abide among the wise.
Proverbs 15:31 NKJV
He who ignores discipline despises himself, but whoever heeds correction gains understanding.
He who walks with the wise will become wise, but the companion of fools will be destroyed.
The light of the eyes cheers the heart, and good news nourishes the bones.
The heart of the discerning acquires knowledge, and the ear of the wise seeks it out.
Like an earring of gold or an ornament of fine gold is a wise man’s rebuke to a listening ear.
It is better to heed a wise man’s rebuke than to listen to the song of fools.
Turn to my reproof, Behold, I will pour out my spirit on you; I will make my words known to you.
Gill’s Exposition of the Entire Bible
The ear that heareth the reproof of life,…. That is given according to the word of life, in a warm, fervent, and lively manner, with zeal, and in good earnest; which reproves the life of another by his own, as well as by words; and which tends to the spiritual and eternal life of the person reproved; being taken, a man that diligently hearkens to, kindly and cordially receives, and cheerfully obeys such reproof given him,
abideth among the wise; he not only chooseth to be among them, that he may have the advantage of their wise counsels and reproofs, but he becomes wise himself thereby, and attains to the character of a wise man, and is numbered among them; such a man abides in the house of wisdom, the church of God, and attends upon and has conversation with the wise dispensers of the word, and shall have a part with them in the church above, in the kingdom of heaven, where the wise will shine as the firmament; the word here used does not denote a lodging for a night, as it sometimes signifies, but a perpetual abiding.
Ellicott’s Commentary for English Readers
(31) The ear that heareth the reproof of life–i.e., one which does not refuse reproof, or instruction, which leads to life. (Comp. Proverbs 6:23.) The “ear” is put for the person, as in Job 29:11.
Verse 31. – The ear that heareth (hearkeneth to) the reproof of life abideth among the wise (Proverbs 6:23). The reproof, or instruction, of life, is that which teaches the true way of pleasing God, which is indeed the only life worth living. The ear, by synecdoche, is put for the person. One who attends to and profits by such admonition may be reckoned among the wise and rejoices to be conversant with them. Wordsworth finds a more recondite sense here: the ear of the wise dwells, lodges, passes the night (Proverbs 19:23) in their heart, whereas the heart of fools is in their mouth (Proverbs 14:33). This verse is omitted in the Septuagint, though it is found in the other Greek versions and the Latin Vulgate.
This takes authentic humility and a high dose of wisdom especially with people who have a high ego, self-confidence or competitive nature.
Hard knocks sometimes are the only sounds heard. It has been quite eloquently said, I paraphrase, that God whispers in our successes, speaks in our daily routines and shouts in our challenges. The key is to listen intently for the truth and nothing but the truth. It is the truth that sets us free. It is the truth that we need to align our lives and wills to. God is truth and God is love. Look at how consistent the principles and nature of the world are. Look how creative and loving nature is, in particular before the great fall. Imagine what Heaven on earth is going to be like. Just imagine.
We will do more than imagine if we hear, hearken and heed. I am of the opinion due to my personal experience, other testimony and what the Bible says that God expects and requires His children to be rebuked and then rebound. It so often takes trials for us to enter the path of salvation.
Not only is listening to righteous rebuke essential to gaining Heaven, but it is also essential to becoming wise on this life as we know it now.
A strong will is only effective when it’s going in the right direction. Life is a game of sorts; hopefully, a long race And the only thing worse than standing still is going fast…in the wrong direction.
I don’t know about you my dear reader but this takes great discernment for me. I can’t count the number of times I have failed. Perhaps my diligent wife has a better clue? We want to listen to what I call ‘righteous rebuke’ but ‘ignore naysayers’. Naysayers normally fixate on the negative, what isn’t likely to happen, all the problems, the pains, the issues, etc.
I find mottos to be essential for living and growth. One of my favorites is ‘take the best and leave the rest’.
The best isn’t always pleasing and sweet. Sometimes is the hard and hurting. Does it hurt so good? If yes, heed and make the best of it. Use it to improve.
Lord, help me to glean to truth and not get stuck in the mire. Give me discernment. You know I need it. In the book of James who tells us if we ask, we shall receive wisdom. Help me to be humble yet confident. Help me to see a solid spot to stand and do so firmly. You Lord know it all. Help me know what to know what I need to succeed.