We turn our focus now to Proverbs 6:3-5. We discussed the danger of being a surety or pledge (co-signing) for others in Proverbs 6:1-2. What follows is the instructions for how to get out of this pledge. There are, of course two options that avail itself at this juncture. If you find yourself in the position of Proverbs 6:1-2, what do you do? What is not said in this text is to just drop the charges, remove your credit card, refuse to pay, and walk away. Not only is this not legal (you are now bound), but this also speaks of low moral character and the Scripture puts moral character very high (just not as high as Spiritual salvation which in of itself shows a moral change of character). The other option is to work through the payments. That is where our text today comes into play.

Proverbs 6:3 says, to deliver yourself. Notice what is in the text: 1. go and humble yourself and 2. plead with him. Do we see where it calls for us to just say,

I am not paying for this. That is tough on you.

Not only does this hurt the other individual who made a bad mistake, but this also comes back to hurt you. Notice several verses – Psalm 37:21; Proverbs 22:26-27; Ecclesiastes 5:5; Romans 13:7-8. What is more is to realize, especially if we are Christians, is how we are to carry ourselves – Proverbs 20:7; 22:1; Ecclesiastes 7:1; Philippians 2:15; 1 Peter 2:12. How can we have a good name when we find ourselves being brought up for failure to pay? There is nothing sadder or more cringing than having someone sit in a court for how they handle money and then making the statement

I am a Christian.

I know there are many things that can happen, but if we are there because of our own choice and actions, please do not invoke Christianity. It is a denial of who and how we are supposed to live as a Christian and shames the name of Christ. Therefore, we now look at Proverbs 6:3 again, it says we are to humble ourselves first. This is probably the hardest thing to do. We recognize we did wrong and we admit we did wrong. To do a full study on humility in Scripture would be to understand the whole point of being Christian in the first place and how we carry ourselves with our own self, others, and most importantly how we present ourselves before God. Instead, suffice it to say that humility is the point that we lower ourselves to the level of the lowest and lift everyone else to our level or above. Humility allows us to see ourselves for who we are and who we are in Christ. This is what makes it possible for us to bear one another’s burden, to humble ourselves, to confess our sins to one another.

In this instance, if we are on the bad end of this whole thing, we must humble ourselves, lower ourselves. Then notice it says we are to plead with our friend. But this is not a simple asking to be freed. Plead is only used only four times in the Old Testament.

1. Bold – Psalm 138:3

2. Plead – Proverbs 6:3

3. Overcome – Song of Solomon 6:5

4. Insolent – Isaiah 3:5

The word has the picture of storm against, or to beset. In other words, you are surrounding him and beseting yourself to him. Like an army against a city, you are to throw yourself against him seeking for something. Not a passive request, but a complete throwing of all you are to your friend. If we have not humbled ourselves first, this will not turn out the way that it should. It will make things worse. What is that something we are beseeching them for? Look again at Proverbs 6:3 – To be delivered from the hand of your friend.

As was mentioned last week, you have trapped yourself by your own words. The only way out is to go to your friend, pray he is your friend, and explain and plead him consistantly and totally to allow you to be free from your obligation. How much should this be?

Proverbs 6:4 tells us that if we think we are going to sleep this off, we are going to be mistaken. I would not advise knocking on their door at 2 AM but I would advise not sitting at home and thinking it will be taken care of. That is what is being said here. Do not slumber while there is time. Go to them, ask them to free you, visit their home. Do all you can to free yourself from your own words. If your friend is a friend, they will release you from your bond. But you must do your own part. Notice it says do not give sleep or slumber. Do not even close your eyes for one moment. What will this look like? I would say this is going to be different application to each individual. Whether that is working through a business proposal to free yourself, or helping them move away from the object that has them in this situation the whole point is to help them get free from what they signed, which in turned will help you get out from what you signed.

Then we come to Proverbs 6:5 and we see again, in relation to what was said in Proverbs 6:3, the whole point is to deliver yourself. The picture is that of hunting. The animal will do all it can to get out of the trap that was laid for it and it will exert so much energy to free itself. That same amount of energy should be devoted to free yourself from being the asurity for anyone. How many parents co-sign for their children on a car only to find their children destroy the parents credit, their reputation, and their finances. How many parents wish they could go back and never do it again? I am sure many.

Do not just sit back and think it will be taken care of. As the animal will be used for food, it does not sit back and think it will be ok, neither will you. You are that animal that is trapped in this imagery of Scripture. Free yourself, do not rest.

Now, the question becomes obvious. What if the friend will not release you? Perhaps that is the situation. First, I would realize that the duty is to be faithful to what God taught (look at the verses above). Second, realize that someone who is willing to allow a “friend” to be hurt may not be the best of friends. Third, this is a great learning tool that should remind us for the future. Fourth, fulfill our requirement and think twice next time before we speak. I believe we covered this a little last week with Matthew 5:37. As said, we should desire to honorable to our word, even if it means we hurt ourselves. Our name and testimony is worth more than the potential money we may save.

Does this mean there will be no pain? No. Sometimes these things have pain. It may mean a second or third job to cover the cost. It may mean we have to dip a little into savings. It may mean we have to work out something to make it work. We may have to sell some stuff or forego something. Each one is a reminder of why this is important to follow Godly instruction when it comes to money. How do we know what that is? We can find God’s plan for money in the Bible.

If you are in this situation, We are not mocking you. Instead we are sorry for you. No where in this blog post is this to be the assumption you are being laughed at. Those who would laugh are not being Biblical either and should check themselves. Instead, we are broken over the pain and hurt you are in But at the same time, we are also praying for God to show Himself to you through this in a mighty way. Perhaps in a way that you have never seen or experienced before. You also will be in a position where you will be able to help others who are thinking of going into these situations as well. The Bible gives the instructions of what to do if you are in this situation. Follow God’s Word.