A Panorama of Life

The book of Proverbs in the Bible is much more than a collection of random proverbs.

Proverbs Overview

This single page PDF is designed to be a simple but helpful index to the book of Proverbs that you can print out and put in your Bible as a reference. There is a title for each chapter from 10-29, and an emphasis on chapters 25-28 with a high-level map of those chapters. Although there is much more going on in each chapter than can be represented on a single page, this should at least provide a broad context and serve as a way to find sections of proverbs that address specific areas of life.

Proverbs Overview Thumbnail

Download the PDF below.

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Each chapter (25,26,27 and 28) provides a persona that represents a dimension of maturity that each of us should understand and grow in. 

If you are just starting in your study of Proverbs, the best place to start is probably chapters 25-29 as these chapters are easier to understand. They were collected by the scribes of king Hezekiah and serve as a sort of commentary on the “panorama” of Solomon in chapters 10-24.

Watch the following session where I walk through the book of Proverbs:

[arve url=”https://rumble.com/v3r4mm7-introduction-to-proverbs.html” title=”Introduction to Proverbs” /]

Or, listen to this similar session in this mp3:

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The Man and the Woman of Proverbs

Proverbs lays out gender roles in a powerful and unique way. In these two sessions, I break down the nuances of gender roles as I understand them from the book of Proverbs

The Proverbs Man

In today’s world, men are belittled and considered toxic. Many children today grow up in fatherless homes, or have only known men to be those who abuse.

How does Proverbs talk about the role of a man?

This session is coming soon. Check back in a few weeks for more content on this topic.

The Proverbs Woman

[arve url=”https://rumble.com/v3wnvr4-the-proverbs-woman.html” title=”The Proverbs Woman” /]

After careful study and consideration, I have come to an unconventional understanding of the woman of Proverbs. This inspiring view of the role of a woman compares the descriptions of women from each part of Proverbs.

Lady Wisdom Handout

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How to Study Proverbs

Once you have a general overview of Proverbs, the next step is to begin looking for patterns, groups, and context within the book. For an example text, we will begin by looking more closely at chapter 14. This session is designed to explain the tools that can be helpful for finding how different proverbs connect and work together.

Proverbs chapter 14 vertical map

Download the PDF below.

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This two page PDF prints out on legal size paper and covers chapter 14 in two views: a “vertical map” and a view of some of the hebrew poetry structure found in the chapter.

It’s important to note that there are several more layers than can fit on this vertical map. There are some other styles of maps that I am working on that do show more layers and more connections, but this vertical map is one of the clearest ways to see the evidence for each group.

You can listen to the session in this mp3:

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reading proverbs

Some interesting aspects of Proverbs:


  • Complex literary techniques:
    • Concept layering
    • Perspective painting
  • Patterns help present meaning
    • Types of proverbs are used to help convey ideas
  • Written for both the novice and the master

Some Observations

The usual interpretation of Proverbs 10-29 is that each proverb is to be taken alone, and that if there is a context in the placement of the proverbs, it is simply circumstantial. After more than 8 years of in-depth study of the book, I firmly believe that the proverbs are not to be taken only individually, but rather, they are the literary paint and color that Solomon used under the inspiration of God to paint his panorama of life, describing each area and time of life in great detail.

Here are 8 reasons that there must be significance to the order of the proverbs.

  1. God is a God of order, and His word must have an order as well. I Cor 14:33,40
  2. Solomon’s own wisdom would not have led him to place his proverbs randomly. I Kings 3:11-12
  3. Solomon himself claims to have “set in order many proverbs” in Ecclesiastes 12:9
  4. The selection of proverbs – Solomon selected the proverbs for us in chapters 10-24 out of 3000 proverbs. 1Kings 4:32 – Some of his better proverbs were later collected into chapters 25-29.
  5. There are duplicate proverbs, which there would be little reason for if there were no context to understand them in.
  6. Through observation, it is easy to find cohesion between proverbs.
  7. The very subject of wisdom is one that is designed to be studied and intermeddled with. Proverbs 18:1
  8. The psychological argument – Ted Hildebrandt argues that wisdom is an exercise of the mind, and the order of the proverbs is intended to engage and challenge the intellectual reader.

Ongoing Effort to Map the Proverbs

Although the purpose of the difficulty in finding the order of the Proverbs is intended for the intellectual study of it, it seems that so few pursue this exercise that it would be profitable to document the journey so that others can understand it in a more meaningful way.

As a result, I am pursuing an effort to map the proverbs. This map will make it easy to understand the conceptual progression of the whole book and make it significantly easier to understand.

As of 2023, I have identified the major concepts in each chapter from 10-29, and created draft maps for chapters 10,11,12,14,25,26, 27 and 29. I am also experimenting with various kinds of visual maps to find the most useful configuration.