A Proverb is a Proverb, Not a Promise

Adrian Rogers

“Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” – Proverbs 22:6

Some parents have almost put themselves in an early grave because they’ve had a wayward child. Someone has taken this proverb and beaten them over the head with it.

Friend, this verse is a proverb. If you read the book of Proverbs and try to turn proverbs into promises, you’ll lose your faith. A proverb is a proverb. A promise is a promise. A precept is a precept. A parable is a parable. A prophecy is a prophecy. You have to be careful.

There are proverbs that tell you the way to be wealthy. Does that mean everyone who follows one of these proverbs is automatically going to be wealthy? A proverb is a general principle that when generally applied will bring a general result.

Instead of grabbing Proverbs as promises, ask God for discernment. He desires us to “rightly divide the word of truth,” not use it as a club to beat up fellow believers. (2 Timothy 2:15)

For more from Love Worth Finding and Pastor Adrian Rogers, please visit


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6 replies

  1. I heard an interesting teaching on this proverb once. I would have sworn it was Adrian Rogers, but I could be wrong. Anyway, the teaching was that that proverb was not about wayward children at all, but about helping a child find where he or she fits in life. Basically to not force your perception of who they should become onto them, but helping them find the path the fits them. Example maybe: trying to force the kid who likely would be a better artist into being a baseball player. Or trying to make the kid a scientist when he ought to be a football player.

Luke 21:36 "Watch therefore, and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man."

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