Proverbs 6:21 - Bind the Word upon your heart and tie it around your neck!
There are a couple verses that I have really enjoyed over the last week or so. They are beautiful and comforting. It is found in Proverbs 6:21-22 and it says, “Bind them on your heart always; tie them around your neck. When you walk they will lead you; when you lie down, they will watch over you; and when you awake, they will talk with you.”
Notice verse 21, “Bind them on your heart always; tie them around your neck.” Virtually everyone that you talk to about the importance of scripture memorization will respond back, “I just can’t memorize like I used too.” In our culture we do not really see the importance of binding them on our hearts or tying them around our neck. It is a neglected discipline.
There was an old rancher who was known for his ability to tie every imaginable knot known. He had spent his whole life tying down loads on the animals to make long journeys in such a way that the load would not fall off as the animal moved through rough terrain, as they went up and down hills, and as they went through rivers and streams.
One day a man came to see the old rancher and began to talk about how to tie all of these knots. The man wanted to know how to tie them all and showed a real interest in listening to the rancher about these things. The rancher asked the man if he would like to go out to the barn and tie the knots on a horse. The man became excited and said, “I would love too if it is not a bother!”
The rancher stopped and looked at him and said, “A bother? It is no bother, it is so nice to teach someone these things because so few show an interest in these things these days.”
This story reminds me of Proverbs 6:21. The Holy Spirit wants to help teach us to bind the Word to our hearts and to train us how to tie the Word to our necks but so few want too these days. Imagine the support the Holy Spirit would give to those of us who would respond to this verse with a willing heart.
Perhaps this lack of interest in binding and tying the Word to our hearts and to our lives is one of the reasons why so many seem to struggle along this journey toward heaven. We thought that the one knot that we knew would bind them through all of the difficult paths that this journey would take and yet it did not work. We did not know about the ‘diamond knot’ that the old rancher could use to secure the load well.
And notice that this verse tells us that we are to bind them on our heart always. All the time we are to bind them. On the good days, and on the bad days; at the beginning of the journey, and every day till the end; when we have time, and when we don’t think that we have the time.
If we will do this it will get easier. Over time our ability to tie knots grow more and we will be able to do it easier. When I was in construction we had a man who was called a ‘cut man’. That is all that he would do every day. We would give him the measurements and he would cut them for us while we continued to work. When our cut man first started he had to write every measurement down. After doing it for a while he got to where we could yell out the numbers and he did not have to write anything down. It was getting easier for him to bind and tie these numbers in his mind.
Spurgeon said something that I found interesting. He said, “The heathen were wont to hang garlands around the necks of the beasts which were about to be slain at the altar, and to crown them with roses as the led them to sacrifice.”
He then makes this illustration out of it, “Many are thus decked with the ornaments of wealth and mirth who are on the way to the slaughter. Ungodly men may be farlanded with social distinctions, scientific attainments, and courtly honours, and yet be no better than bullocks devoted to the axe, at the altar of the god of this world...If men were wise they would regard with equal disesteem those earthly honours and possessions which do but deck out a condemned criminal, and adorn a wretch over whom the wrath of God is hovering. O silly men, to rejoice in the tokens of your destruction, and to glory in your shame!”
The people of this world really do hang many honors around their necks and adorn themselves quite nicely with the things of this world. And yet, it will profit them nothing in the end. But a believer, a Christian, is to be busy doing one thing that will profit them in this world and in the one to come. They are to bind the Word of God on their heart and tie the Word of God around their neck. The world will call us foolish to trust in this old word. This world will do everything that it can do to knock the Word of God off of your life and out of your heart.
Yet, the Holy Spirit will show us how to tie a ‘diamond knot’ that will last. They may call us fools, but Spurgeon paints the true picture when he says, “O silly men, to rejoice in the tokens of your destruction, and to glory in your shame!”