There is a way that seems right to a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.
Our difficulty in life is often with things that seem to be right. Where they are obviously wrong there is no need for hesitation, but where probabilities are in their favour we must pause and consider. How far does our own experience confirm the doctrine of the text?
1. Does not the way of self-protection seem to be right? To a certain extent it is right. Pressed unduly it becomes practical atheism.
2. Does not the way of physical persecution for truth's sake seem to be right? If man is teaching error why not burn him, or otherwise put a forcible end to his ministry?
3. Does not the way of self-enjoyment seem right.
4. Does not the way of judging by appearances seem right? What can be better? What can be simpler?
5. Does not the way of self-redemption seem right? Is it not brave and spirited to say that we take our own recovery into our own hands? This is the fatal error of mankind. "O Israel, thou hast destroyed thyself, but in Me is thy help."Application:
1. Lean not to thine own understanding. The coiled scorpion may be mistaken for an egg.
2. Seek higher than human counsel. Be religious. Put thy whole life into the keeping of God. "The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord." Distrust appearances. Even when the way seems right stand still and commune with Heaven. "Except Thy presence go with me, carry me not up hence."
(J. Parker, D.D.)
Parallel VersesKJV: There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.