Proverbs by Dr. Bruce Waltke
Prof. Bruce Waltke is acknowledged as the most accomplished scholar of Proverbs of this generation. His two-volume commentary on Proverbs and the relevant sections of his Old Testament Theology show an honesty and mastery of the text rarely seen. When you watch him teach, you will see both a magisterial handling of the material and also a gentleness that is not always present in a scholar of his caliber. This is an expansive class that covers the structure, theology, and content of the entire book. Some of the classes were even filmed in his home. We are working on a student workbook for this class.
Transcriptions by BT Ambassador Phil Smith
Dr. Waltke covers some introductory issues for the class.
The aim of this lecture is to determine our pre-understanding of life and Proverbs. Dr. Waltke discusses issues of God as author, human author as inspired, and Lectio Divina.
The preamble and initial verses are key to understanding Proverbs properly.
The second half of the Preamble deals with the issues of moral and mental acumen.
We now meet the ten lectures in Proverbs of the parent's teaching to the son/daughter. When Dr. Waltke originally lectured, he skipped ahead to the discussion of politics and is now resuming the normal order. Those lectures on politics are our lectures 24-26.
Dr. Waltke begins with a 20 minute summary of the class so far, and then moves into Proverbs 2 and "Safeguards Against the Wicked." This is the second Proverbs lecture.
After a seven-minute review and some questions, Dr. Waltke moves into Proverbs 2 and its description of the purpose of godly character/fruit. It is a safeguard against the wicked man and woman, and closes in a summary of life, not death.
In dealing with 3:-12, Dr. Waltke raises the legitimate hermeneutical question if the book promises too much. Does it make promises it can't keep?
The value of wisdom and applying it to living it out in community.
Proverb's teaching on getting the family heritage (4:1-9), staying off the wrong way (4:10-19), not swerving from the right way (4:20-27).
The final part of the previous lecture.
Dr. Waltke concludes this lecture on 16:10-15 and the discussion on the king.
The author deals with the topic of the wicked woman. Proverbs 5:1-14.
Dr. Waltke continues his discussion of this topic, picking up at Proverbs 5:15.
The final lecture on this topic, picking up at Proverbs 8.
Covers the topic of money, drawing thematically from through the book. Proverbs 6:1-19; 10:1-5; Psalm 49; various passages.
After a 18 minute summary of the entire book of Proverbs, Dr. Waltke moves into discussing the topic of being money-wise but drawing from many different passages in Proverbs.
Dr. Waltke concludes the topic of money by talking about the value of wealth, and how to have enduring wealth.
Drawing from passages throughout Proverbs, Dr. Waltke looks at the topics of the power of words, the limitations of words, and the characteristics of wise speech (B.R.E.A.T.H.).
After introducing the need for a study on marriage, we look at the characteristics of a wise husband and a wise wife. One of the many points is that both husband and wife are to be involved in the teaching of their children.
This lesson focuses on the teaching of the children by both parents (with a discussion of 1 Timothy 2:12-3:1), believing that this teaching will be effective, and recognizing the dignity of the child (among other topics).
After a discussion of the structure of the famous poem in Proverbs 31, Dr. Waltke moves into a verse by verse exegesis, emphasizing her entrepreneurial spirit and social consciousness.
Discussion of Proverbs 30 with a strong emphasis in understanding its poetic structure.
Christians should be involved in politics. Politics and the Christian life are inseparable just as ethics and the Christian life are inseparable. A just government is the foundation for a nation's economic prosperity and social well-being. In biblical theology, the king is replaced by voting citizens.
After a review of the preceding lecture, Dr. Waltke talks about how we are in a spiritual and political war with "fools." The wise retrain evil by punishing wrongdoers. Non-involvement is a vote for the wicked. The benefits of a righteous and just government.
What are the foundations for a good government? What are the characteristics of a good ruler?
Dr. Waltke concludes the class by summarizing the basic theology of Proverbs in an attempt to show that it is in agreement with the rest of the Old Testament.