Click this link to hear an audio version of the below text narrated by SOTH member Jerry Rhinehart:
Proverbs 5:1-14 (ESV)
Warning Against Adultery
5 My son, be attentive to my wisdom; incline your ear to my understanding, 2 that you may keep discretion, and your lips may guard knowledge. 3 For the lips of a forbidden woman drip honey,
and her speech is smoother than oil, 4 but in the end she is bitter as wormwood, sharp as a two-edged sword. 5 Her feet go down to death; her steps follow the path to Sheol; 6 she does not ponder the path of life; her ways wander, and she does not know it. 7 And now, O sons, listen to me, and do not depart from the words of my mouth. 8 Keep your way far from her, and do not go near the door of her house, 9 lest you give your honor to others and your years to the merciless, 10 lest strangers take their fill of your strength, and your labors go to the house of a foreigner, 11 and at the end of your life you groan, when your flesh and body are consumed, 12 and you say, “How I hated discipline, and my heart despised reproof! 13 I did not listen to the voice of my teachers or incline my ear to my instructors. 14 I am at the brink of utter ruin in the assembled congregation.”
Proverbs has several long and fervent warnings against adultery. If you are single, or a widow or widower, you may be tempted to think this is not relevant to you. Or if you have always been faithful in marriage, you may think this warning does not apply. Not so! As you read this warning against adultery, remember that it refers to two things: being unfaithful to our earthly spouse, but even more importantly, being unfaithful to God. Whenever we break the first commandment (“You shall have no other gods”) we are committing spiritual adultery. We are “cheating on” God. This warning against adultery emphasizes how false gods are like a forbidden woman: they drip honey and have smooth speech, but their paths lead to death. What is getting in the way of God having 1st place in your life? Why does that false god seem so attractive?