“The mouth of forbidden women is a deep pit; he with whom the Lord is angry will fall into it.”
“Forbidden women” refers to the temptation of sexual sin, but also refers to any of the attractive lies with which the world seeks to deceive and seduce us. The world will lie to you. It will tell you what you want to hear. As you navigate the world, you have to be careful. Very careful.
Solomon taught us this back in Chapter 5: “Why should you be intoxicated, my son, with a forbidden woman and embrace the bosom of an adulteress? For a man's ways are before the eyes of the Lord, and he ponders all his paths.” (Proverbs 5.20-21)
Solomon asks a rhetorical question: Why would you want to be under the influence and control of someone or something that wants to do you harm? That is how the seductive traps of the world work. This is the nature of false religion, idolatry, materialism, greed, and certain political philosophies. They intoxicate you and impair your judgment. They seduce you into embracing them, and then lead you astray. The attractive lies of the world are pleasurable in the beginning, but eventually they kill you.
The Lord is watching. You might be seduced and intoxicated, but the Lord is not. You may not see clearly, but the Lord does. That is why we must trust God’s standards. That is why the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. Turn away from the intoxicating deceit of the forbidden woman and turn to God’s truth.
“The iniquities of the wicked ensnare him, and he is held fast in the cords of his sin. He dies for lack of discipline (musar), and because of his great folly he is led astray.” (Proverbs 5.22-23)
Listening to the voice of truth, turning away from the deceptive seduction of sin, and learning to live in alignment with God’s standards is the result of the process of musar … disciplined training.
Solomon warns here that if you reject the process of musar, you will get ensnared in the cords of “iniquity.” The point is that repeated behavior builds habit. Your repeated behavior can be discipline-driven, which builds the right habits; or your repeated behavior can be default-driven, which builds the wrong habits.
The foolish person gets caught in the snare of repeated default behavior. He is like an animal caught in a trap, and he is “held fast in the cords of his sin.” This is an accurate description of people who suffer from addiction, whether sexual addiction or substance abuse.
It is a sobering truth: “He dies for lack of discipline (musar).” Without disciplined training, people do not have the strength or skill to resist the temptations of “the seductress,” and they are vulnerable to her strategies. If they are ensnared in her seductions long enough, at some point the result will be deadly.
The final message is clear: Don’t be foolish. Don’t be led astray by the lust and lies of the forbidden woman, no matter what form she takes. Be very careful; it will be a form that you will find attractive.