10 My son, if sinners entice you,
do not consent. (Proverbs 1:10. ESV.)
This sounds easy enough to follow, right? But what about peer pressure and a desire to fit into a group of people? What about crafty master manipulators and those who use clever control tactics and/or intimidation to get what they want?
11 If they say, “Come with us, let us lie in wait for blood;
let us ambush the innocent without reason;
12 like Sheol let us swallow them alive,
and whole, like those who go down to the pit;
13 we shall find all precious goods,
we shall fill our houses with plunder;
14 throw in your lot among us;
we will all have one purse”— (Proverbs 1:11-14. ESV.)
Have you ever come across someone like this? Perhaps they appear as though they are going to protect the "little guy". Or maybe he/she shamelessly preys on those they deem weaker than himself/herself. Or possibly it is pride that drives an individual like above.
15 my son, do not walk in the way with them;
hold back your foot from their paths,
16 for their feet run to evil,
and they make haste to shed blood. (Proverbs 1:15-16. ESV.)
THEIR FEET RUN TO EVIL! Yes, some hide their ways in the darkness. Self love and self service are the idols they serve. They avoid the light. They hurt loved ones and strangers alike. Their behavior is difficult to understand. Why do they do what they do? Can they help themselves? Is there any sort of self control? But, if they get what they want (and there are no consequences) while behaving badly, why would they change?
17 For in vain is a net spread
in the sight of any bird,
18 but these men lie in wait for their own blood;
they set an ambush for their own lives.
19 Such are the ways of everyone who is greedy for unjust gain;
it takes away the life of its possessors. (Proverbs 1:17-19. ESV.)
8Hear, my son, your father's instruction,
and forsake not your mother's teaching. (Proverbs 1:8. ESV.)