(Proverbs 22:3 KJV) A prudent man foreseeth the evil, and hideth himself: but the simple pass on, and are punished.
This thought is repeated again word for word at 27:12. The repetition would say this is important. Rarely do we see a “prudent” (6175) person today. I am not sure it is a modern characteristic. I know that it is the subject of scorn and ridicule both in and out of the church. People seem to seek out the decadent and corrupt. A case in point is how people are drawn to rap music or the atmosphere of a seedy bar. Look at pictures of fans of the Rocky Horror Picture Show.
Prudence is given two talents here. It recognizes “evil” (7463a) and “hides” (5641) from it. Recognizing evil requires not only seeing it but admitting what you are seeing. One of the gifts of the Spirit is discernment. There is discussion on what this gift involves but I think one of the definite ingredients is the ability to tell the difference between good and evil. Like all gifts there are some people who have the gift and excel in this area. And like all gifts there is at least a reflection on it in all believers. For instance, some have the gift of giving, all are expected to tithe. Some have the gift of evangelism, all are expected to witness. You can follow this on your own. Not having the gift does not excuse you from obedience to the Spirit.
One area we do not want to see evil is in the areas that touch us closely. We don’t want to see it in the church. We don’t want to see it in our family. We don’t want to see it in our friends. We don’t want to see it in our leisure. Open your eyes.
I am not sure how to deal with this idea of hiding. It would seem that we would be spending our lives in closets or under the bed. We are surrounded by evil. This is not so physical. It might mean to conceal our thinking and our plans. We do not need to share everything about our lives with people who are serving Satan. They will only use what they learn to increase the nastiness of the world. I will have think about this some more. There are times when we are to be quiet and submissive. There are times when we are to be like Peter standing up to Elders who told him to stop preaching.
So? Recognize evil. It is all around you. When you see it remind yourself that “greater is He that is in you than he that is in the world.”