Proverbs states its theme right at the book’s beginning (1:1–7): its goal is to describe and instill “wisdom” in God’s people, a wisdom that is founded in the “fear of the Lord” and that works out covenant life in the practical details of everyday situations and relationships.Proverbs covers a wide array of topics from daily life: diligence and laziness (6:6–11); friendship (3:27–28; 18:24); speech (10:19–21); marriage (18:22; 19:14); child rearing (22:6); domestic peace (15:17; 17:1); work (11:1); getting along and good manners (23:1–2; 25:16–17; 26:17–19; 27:14); eternity (14:32; 23:17–18); and much more. In each of these areas it offers wisdom for realizing the life of the covenant in the details; it shows that “godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come” (1 Tim. 4:8). It demonstrates clearly that:
1. God’s will is intensely practical, applying to every aspect of his people’s lives. A proper relation to God involves, first, trying hard to understand his truth, and then embracing and obeying what one understands.
2. A life lived by God’s will is a happy life (3:21–26).
3. A life lived by God’s will is a useful life (3:27–28; 12:18, 25).
4. A life lived by God’s will does not just happen; one must seek after it, study, pursue it, and discipline oneself.
5. Such a life is available to those who go after it (9:1–6).