Beyond the Weekend

June 1 | Friends

June 1, 2020


READ Proverbs 1 (listen). WRITE out one verse and SHARE with someone.

Proverbs 1 introduces the book. It tells us its theme, purpose and sets up the contrast between the wise and the fool. It anchors wisdom in the fear of the Lord. The chapter then continues with the first lesson (v. 8-19) contained in chapters 1-9, along with an interlude (v. 20-33).


The king answered the people harshly. Rejecting the advice given him by the elders, he followed the advice of the young men and said, “My father made your yoke heavy; I will make it even heavier. My father scourged you with whips; I will scourge you with scorpions.” 1 Kings 12:13-14

Read: 1 Kings 12:1-16

Listen: 1 Kings 12


Friendship is incredibly important and influential. Perhaps no other story in the Bible illustrates this truth better than a decision by Rehoboam shortly after his ascension as king of Israel (1 Kings 12:1-16). Upon taking the throne following the death of his father Solomon (the author of many of the Proverbs), the people approach Rehoboam with a request. They want to know if he would consider lessening the impact of government on their lives. They were probably referring to Solomon’s massive taxation, forced labor and military draft.

Rehoboam had two choices: listen to the elders who served his father (“Lessen the load!”) or listen to his friends, the buddies he grew up with (“Increase the load!”). Regretfully, he listened to his buddies, choose poorly and lost the support of the people. Greatly influenced by the advice he received from his friends, his decision accelerated the nation’s spiritual and political slide.

Friendship is a major theme in Proverbs. In multiple places, Proverbs tells us that the direction and quality of our life is connected to the direction and quality of our friends (see Proverbs 1:8-19 in today’s The Wisdom Challenge). The truth is, like Rehoboam, we do listen to those we hang with.


Spend a few minutes reviewing your “list” of friends. Then mentally place them in one of two categories: those who influence you positively and those who don’t. Later this week, we’ll ask you to consider making some changes to this list. But for now, pray to God for an openness to making some changes in the people you hang with.

Download a printable PDF of the BTW week here.

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