A Study of Proverbs 30:11-17

In this article I would like us to take a closer look at a verse that has intrigued me for a long time. I am talking about Proverbs 30:17. And if you glance at Proverbs 30:17 you know immediately that this is a verse which requires a great deal of spiritual interpretation. But first let us look at the context where we find this verse. We read in Proverbs 30:11-17,

Warnings About Ingratitude (Proverbs 30:11-17, Matthew 24:12, Romans 3:4)

Proverbs 30:11
There is a generation that curseth their father, and doth not bless their mother.

Proverbs 30:12
There is a generation that are pure in their own eyes, and yet is not washed from their filthiness.

Proverbs 30:13
There is a generation, O how lofty are their eyes! and their eyelids are lifted up.

Proverbs 30:14
There is a generation, whose teeth are as swords, and their jaw teeth as knives, to devour the poor from off the earth, and the needy from among men.

Proverbs 30:15
The horseleach hath two daughters, crying, Give, give. There are three things that are never satisfied, yea, four things say not, It is enough:

Proverbs 30:16
The grave; and the barren womb; the earth that is not filled with water; and the fire that saith not, It is enough.

Proverbs 30:17
The eye that mocketh at his father, and despiseth to obey his mother, the ravens of the valley shall pick it out, and the young eagles shall eat it.

As we can see, this is a passage which deals with ingratitude that is so common in these last days. People are ungrateful when their love for God and their love for their fellow man have grown cold. The Lord Jesus spoke about this phenomenon when He said in Matthew 24:12, “And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.”

In other words, sin shall multiply so much near the end of time that men become callous to sin, and then their love for God and for their fellow man will grow cold. And because their love for God grows cold, they are not grateful for all that God has given them. That sin is multiplying exceedingly today cannot be denied. If we take for example one command from God, “Thou shalt not bear false witness,” we can see that our whole world is filled with liars. Through the media we are bombarded with lies coming from every level of society.

Every advertisement on television or coming to us on our computer is a mixture of truth and lies, especially advertisements from the pharmaceutical industries. Every politician elbows his way up with a mixture of truth and lies. Every resume submitted to employers is laced with exaggerations and some outright lies to make it more attractive. Since most stores employ the “bait and switch” strategy, they will instruct their sales persons of the same philosophy.

Even the daily news has been selected in such a way that certain truths must be kept away from the general public. Even some of the modern Bible translations contain outright lies about the sovereignty of God. And so on. God already stated this fact in Romans 3:4, where He said, “Let God be true, but every man a liar, as it is written.” And thus, “because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold,” and because their love has grown cold many are unaware of the love of God for their soul, and they become ungrateful. Especially here in Proverbs 30:17, the verse that we intend to study, the ingratitude of rebellious children toward their parents is on display. And this will be especially true for children who are living toward the end of time.

But let us consider this verse in perspective: The Proverbs of Solomon are in reality “The Parables of Solomon”, for the word proverbs is actually the word for parables. And thus, Proverbs 30:17 is not a verse whose focus is on the punishment of those who are rebellious children, it is not a moralizing verse, but it is a prophecy contained in a parable. In the first place, it is a prophecy about the nation of Israel. But it goes further than that. In the second place it is a prophecy about the church, which tends to make the same mistakes as the Old Testament church has done before. Let us now look at Proverbs 30:17,

The Eye that Mocketh at His Father (Proverbs 30:17, Matthew 6:22-24, Psalm 19:8, Ephesians 1:18, Proverbs 22:9, Psalm 131:1, Matthew 20:15, James 1:17, Deuteronomy 18:15-19, Deuteronomy 10:16, Deuteronomy 30:6)

Proverbs 30:17
The eye that mocketh at his father, and despiseth to obey his mother, the ravens of the valley shall pick it out, and the young eagles shall eat it.

The first word that catches our eye in this verse is “The Eye”.

What does the eye represent in the parables of the Lord Jesus in the New Testament?

It represents “the window to our soul.”
In Matthew 6:22 the Lord Jesus told us here a parable about the characteristics of the eye a man has, and about the gifts that God has bestowed on that person as reflected by the characteristics of his eye. The eye is portrayed as a window of our soul, which lets light into our soul, and which lets others know what comes out of our soul.

Matthew 6:22
The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light.

Matthew 6:23
But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness!

Matthew 6:24
No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.

The words “If thine eye be single” mean “If you have a singleness of heart” in serving Christ and learning about Christ, and not try to serve two masters, you will do well, and your whole body will be full of the light which is a gift from God. Other examples are given in various places in the Bible:

The Word of God enlightens the eyes (Psalm 19:8).

The eyes of the understanding are being enlightened (Ephesians 1:18).

The good man has a bountiful eye, for he gives of his bread to the poor (Proverbs 22:9).

High or lofty eyes describe the proud man (Psalm 131:1).

The envious man has an evil eye (Matthew 20:15).

And thus, the eye is not only used as an indicator of what goes on in the mind of a person, but it is also reflecting what the actions of this person are going to be. And thus, the eye is the window to the soul.

“The eye that mocketh at his father” tells us of the entire attitude of this person against his father.

But who is meant by “his Father”?

Since we are going to stay away from moralizing sermons out of the parables of Solomon, we must say that “his Father” refers to God, who gave our mother conception, and gave us physical life, and gave us everything we presently have. God says in James 1:17,

James 1:17
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.

And thus, everything we have at this point in time we have received from God who has guided our life by His providence. God, in His wisdom, has given us all that we need in this life. But if we do not appreciate all that God has given us, if we doubt His wisdom in the history of our life, if we think that God could have done a better job, then we are mocking God. And this is where the moralizing aspect of this verse is shining through, for if we display an ungrateful attitude toward God, we are actually mocking God. The nation of Israel has heard and read the Word of God. They said they would believe in the sovereignty of God, and that God has a people elected whom He will receive into heaven, and they believed that they were those people whom God had elected, but they did not believe all that God has written in the Bible. Wherever God mentioned His blessings on the Gentiles they closed their eyes and ears, and pretended not to understand those words. Wherever God mentioned that He would raise up a Prophet like unto Moses, like in Deuteronomy 18:15-19, they pretended not to understand. Wherever God spoke about circumcising their heart, like in Deuteronomy 10:16, and in Deuteronomy 30:6 they pretended not to understand. In other words, by picking and choosing from the Bible they were mocking God. They were choosing those things from the Bible that they like, but they were deliberately ignoring other parts of the Bible. In doing so they were in fact creating other gods for themselves, much like churches are doing these days, but these are not the God of the Bible. These were idols which they made up in their heart, and in doing so they were mocking God. Let us now return to the words of Proverbs 30:17.

And Despiseth to Obey His Mother (Proverbs 30:17, John 8:44, Galatians 4:21-26)

Proverbs 30:17
The eye that mocketh at his father, and despiseth to obey his mother, the ravens of the valley shall pick it out, and the young eagles shall eat it.

What is the spiritual meaning of “despising to obey his mother ”?

Who does his mother represent?

When we look at the first half of this verse, mocking his father, and despising his mother, God is confronting us with gross sin. In other words, God is describing this sin as if our God were his Father, for that is the sin that this man is accused of here in the first half of this verse. God is not saying that this man mocks his father the devil, for that is indeed his father according to John 8:44. And thus, when we identify his mother in this verse, we should likewise identify her as the mother of true believers.

Who is the mother of all the saints?

In Galatians 4:21 God describes here an incident in the life of Abraham, and God shows us that His providence rules all the way, even down to the details of the sins of Abraham, so that even the sins of Abraham, and our sins, fall within the plans of God. God works out His plans using the sins of man. We read in Gal 4:21-26,

Galatians 4:21
Tell me, ye that desire to be under the law, do ye not hear the law?

Galatians 4:22
For it is written, that Abraham had two sons, the one by a bondmaid, the other by a freewoman.

Galatians 4:23
But he who was of the bondwoman was born after the flesh; but he of the freewoman was by promise.

Galatians 4:24
Which things are an allegory: for these are the two covenants; the one from the mount Sinai, which gendereth to bondage, which is Agar.

Galatians 4:25
For this Agar is mount Sinai in Arabia, and answereth to Jerusalem which now is, and is in bondage with her children.

Galatians 4:26
But Jerusalem which is above is free, which is the mother of us all.

This is the story of two women, Hagar and Sarah, representing two covenants. Hagar represents the covenant of works that man wants to make with God, which is a covenant that requires man to do something by which he will be saved. Sarah represents the covenant of grace which God makes with certain men, where God has done everything for the salvation of certain men. At the same time these two women also represent two cities. Hagar represents the earthly city of Jerusalem of bricks and mortar whose citizens are all those who are subject to a covenant of works, and who are still in bondage to sin and Satan. Sarah represents the Jerusalem which is above, in heaven, whose citizens are all the saints living on earth or in heaven who are subject to a covenant of grace, and who are presently no longer in bondage to Satan. And then we read in Galatians 4:26, “But Jerusalem which is above is free, which is the mother of us all.”

And the words “US ALL” should not be interpreted as “all of us universally”, but as “all of us who are of the elect,” for we need to harmonize the Scriptures. And thus, Sarah is the mother of all those who believe, like Abraham is the father of all who believe. We might also say that the heavenly Jerusalem is the mother of us all, and thereby we understand that the heavenly Jerusalem represents the covenant of grace, represented by Sarah.

What is the covenant of grace?

The covenant of grace is:

1) That God has a number of people who are His elect, chosen in Christ from before the foundation of the world.

2) For whom Christ paid the full penalty for all their sins on the cross, and Christ paid for the sins of no one else.

3) In our lifetime God the Holy Spirit applies the payment that Christ made to our soul and makes us born from above

4) God guarantees that all those who have been made born from above will stay in the faith until the rapture when Christ comes again.

That, in a nutshell, is the covenant of grace. This is what we believe. Our obedience to this covenant of grace is that we believe it. But let us now consider the meaning of the words in Proverbs 30:17, “And despiseth to obey his mother.”

This person despises the glorious covenant of grace that God made, for he holds to a covenant of works. He believes, for example, that Christ paid for the sins of every human being, and now it is up to us to decide if we want this salvation that Christ holds out to us. But this is an insult to God, for this is not what the Bible describes as the salvation that God has provided. God does not need our assistance in letting Him make a decision to whom He should give this salvation.

And so, how does the wrath of God come down upon this person who refuses to believe what the Bible says so clearly?

And when we speak of the wrath of God, we must specify that it is the wrath of God while this person is still alive on this earth, for we already know what the wrath of God is after this life.

The Ravens of the Valley (Proverbs 30:17, 1 Kings 17:1-6, Isaiah 34:11, 2 Thessalonians 2:11-13, Matthew 13:4,19)

Proverbs 30:17
The eye that mocketh at his father, and despiseth to obey his mother, the ravens of the valley shall pick it out, and the young eagles shall eat it.

Who do the ravens of the valley represent?

When we search the Bible for the same Hebrew word we are unmistakably drawn to the story of Elijah who was fed by the ravens.

King Ahab who ruled over the northern kingdom of Israel was a wicked king. And to add insult to injury, Ahab also married Jezebel, a Zidonian princess. But since God loved Israel, God decided to chasten Israel, to make her king aware of his sinful lifestyle. And God sent the prophet Elijah to Ahab to point out his wickedness. We read in 1 Kings 17:1-6,

1 Kings 17:1
And Elijah the Tishbite, who was of the inhabitants of Gilead, said unto Ahab, As the LORD God of Israel liveth, before whom I stand, there shall not be dew nor rain these years, but according to my word.

1 Kings 17:2
And the word of the LORD came unto him, saying,

1 Kings 17:3
Get thee hence, and turn thee eastward, and hide thyself by the brook Cherith, that is before Jordan.

1 Kings 17:4
And it shall be, that thou shalt drink of the brook; and I have commanded the ravens to feed thee there.

1 Kings 17:5
So he went and did according unto the word of the LORD: for he went and dwelt by the brook Cherith, that is before Jordan.

1 Kings 17:6
And the ravens brought him bread and flesh in the morning, and bread and flesh in the evening; and he drank of the brook.

Elijah dared to come into the presence of the king and declare to him the judgment of the Lord upon him. But then God told Elijah to hide himself by the brook Cherith, and God commanded the ravens to feed Elijah. The brook was a tiny river in a valley.

And thus, when we ask ourselves, “Who do the ravens of the valley represent?” we have the answer here. God made the ravens temporarily His servants. The ravens were unclean animals. When God describes a picture of Hell in Isaiah 34 God includes the raven as one of the cursed animals who shall inhabit such a dreadful place. And so, we get the impression that the ravens are pictured as messengers of Satan. But God commanded the ravens to feed Elijah, and thus the ravens brought him bread and flesh.

Where did the ravens get this bread and flesh?

They stole it from the humans.

Did Elijah know that it was stolen?

Of course he knew, since ravens are not able to make bread. But we see here that even the foulest animals or the lowest of humans can be turned into servants of God to accomplish His purposes. And that is also the meaning in Proverbs 30:17.

The ravens of the valley represent demons in the kingdom of Satan, but they have no love for humans who are in error. They have no love for those who are snared in the kingdom of Satan. God sends to them the unbelievers who are under the curse of God, because they refuse to believe the love of the truth that they might be saved and God will send them strong delusion by the hand of those who are already possessed by the demons. God says in 2 Thessalonians 2:11-13,

2 Thessalonians 2:11
And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe The lie:

2 Thessalonians 2:12
That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

2 Thessalonians 2:13
But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth:

You see, it is God who shall send them strong delusion. It is God who shall send them the ravens of the valley who will pick out whatever truth there still is in their mind, and the demons will be happy to comply.

And what is The lie that they are going to believe?

For the Greek text indeed says The lie. For the answer to this question, look at the context: God shows us the contrast between two groups of people; verse 12 for one group and verse 13 for the second group of people. In verse 12 God says, “They believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.”

What did they not believe?

The answer is given in verse 13, where God says, “God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth.”

Verse 13 is the truth, and verse 12 tells us that unbelief in the truth is identical to having pleasure in unrighteousness.

The Lord Jesus told us a similar story in the parable of the Sower in Matthew 13. We read in Matthew 13:4, “And when he sowed, some seeds fell by the way side, and the fowls came and devoured them up.”

Then the Lord Jesus explained this verse in verse 19. We read in Matthew 13:19, “When any one heareth the word of the kingdom, and understandeth it not, then cometh the wicked one, and catcheth away that which was sown in his heart. This is he which received seed by the way side.” And so, here again the birds represent demons who pick away those things that were sown in this person’s heart.

Shall Pick It Out (Proverbs 30:17)

The ravens of the valley shall pick out this person’s evil eye.

What does this mean?

Remember we are talking about the eye that mocketh at his Father in heaven, believing that our Father in heaven did make a mistake when He married his current wife, and he is now eligible for a divorce and to get a new wife; and it is the person who refuses to believe the principles of the covenant of grace. The first phase of the snare that God sends to this person is the belief that he is correct. The media confirm his ideas. Instead of God he now uses the term “Mother Nature.” It is a continuation of mocking God, but now he is avoiding God, and gradually the principles about God and the church he has learned from his youth are fading out of his life. This is dreadful apostacy. But then God causes him to enter into the second stage of his apostacy, from where there is no return possible.

The Young Eagles Shall Eat It (Proverbs 30:17, Exodus 19:4, Deuteronomy 28:48-49, 1 Corinthians 14:21-22)

Proverbs 30:17
The eye that mocketh at his father, and despiseth to obey his mother, the ravens of the valley shall pick it out, and the young eagles shall eat it.

Who are the young eagles, or literally the sons of the eagles?

In the Bible God is often described as an eagle. God says in Exodus 19:4, “Ye have seen what I did unto the Egyptians, and how I bare you on eagles’ wings, and brought you unto myself.”

God’s action in bringing the nation of Israel out of Egypt was a marvelous picture of how God saves His people. But Satan is a great imitator of God. God tests the church in bringing the church the charismatic gospel near the end of time. Then we read in Deuteronomy 28:48-49,

Deuteronomy 28:48
Therefore shalt thou serve thine enemies which the LORD shall send against thee, in hunger, and in thirst, and in nakedness, and in want of all things: and he shall put a yoke of iron upon thy neck, until he have destroyed thee.

Deuteronomy 28:49
The LORD shall bring a nation against thee from far, from the end of the earth, as swift as the eagle flieth; a nation whose tongue thou shalt not understand;

The tongue speakers shall descend upon the church, and they shall remain there until they have destroyed the church.

But how did they get in contact with the church?

The young eagles, or better the sons of the eagles who are imitating God shall come in contact with the members of the church. And through these personal contacts the sons of the eagles will form marriages with the daughters of the church, and these mixed marriages will be the driving force to allow the charismatic movement to overrun the church. This is the second stage of the apostacy. And whatever little truth has remained thus far will be eradicated. The sons of the eagles shall eat it, and shall make sure there is nothing left of the original covenant of grace. We are not looking forward to this unhappy future, but this is what has been prophesied in Proverbs 30:17.

First it was the nation of Israel who was mocking God by picking and choosing from the Bible whatever they wanted to believe, and whatever they wanted to reject. And this mode of operation was copied by the New Testament church who also wanted to get away with it. But God sent the ravens of the valley to the church and they moved the church away from the covenant of grace, and into the Arminian gospel. This went on for many years. The result was that many in the church remained unsaved, and now the church was ripe for the takeover by the charismatic gospel.

In the past 50 years the charismatic gospel has overtaken much of the established churches and denominations, because most churches have surrendered their autonomy to the dictates of their centralized government. The result is a permanent blindness that has been spread over most of the churches. The young eagles have eaten whatever the ravens of the valley have left.

We read in 1 Corinthians 14:21-22,

1 Corinthians 14:21
In the law it is written, With men of other tongues and other lips will I speak unto this people; and yet for all that will they not hear me, saith the Lord.

1 Corinthians 14:22
Wherefore tongues are for a sign, not to them that believe, but to them that believe not: but prophesying serveth not for them that believe not, but for them which believe.

God has given us clear signals to tell us what we should believe and what we should reject. This passage in 1 Corinthians 14:21-22 is such an example. But if the people in the churches are blind, then they cannot see, and this means they cannot see the truth of this passage.


By Alfred J. Chompff

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