An Idea Borrowed

Years ago on a radio program someone shared that they read a chapter in Proverbs every day. Since there are 31 chapters and the longest month has 31 days it allows you to read through Proverbs on a regular basis. I use it as the launch pad for my personal worship time and branch out from there. On this blog I will try to share some of the insights I have in the Word. I will try to organize them in the archive by reference.

Friday, April 19, 2019

Keep, Not Get

(Proverbs 19:16 KJV)  He that keepeth the commandment keepeth his own soul; but he that despiseth his ways shall die.

As we look at this verse and wonder how it relates to being saved by grace we need to think about something.  You can’t “keep” (8104) something you don’t have.  This is not a warning to obey the law if we want to get saved.  It is a reminder that obedience is not an option and it is necessary if we want to stay saved.  You may not like that but I can’t help it if you like instant grits. 

I still believe that no one will go to hell who does not reject heaven.  For someone who is determined to be lord of their own life an eternity with the real Lord would be utter misery.  I think there will be masses who will stand before the judgement seat of God and still be defiant. 

So?  Grace is extended.  Forgiveness is offered.  The blessings of eternity are available to those who are willing to enter in.  Or not. 

Thursday, April 18, 2019

Long Laces

(Proverbs 18:9 KJV)  He also that is slothful in his work is brother to him that is a great waster.

Have you ever had your shoes come untied when you are in the middle of something?  I had one pair that would always start trailing strings when I was walking on very cold mornings.  Then I would be forced to take off my gloves to tighten them up again.  I kept wondering why it was just this pair of shoes.  I finally figured out that the laces on these modern styles were so long that they would either drag on the ground when tied or flop around enough to gradually work the knot loose.  I cut off a few inches and rarely had trouble afterwards.

There are areas in our life that are like that.  We need to keep checking them and redoing them and the reason is that we have too much unnecessary foo-fa pulling on them.  We need to get rid of what the NASB calls “slack” (7503) and in this one place the KJV calls “slothful”.

So?  Keep your laces snug.  It will make a lot less stumbling in life.

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Virtue View

(Proverbs 17:23 KJV)  A wicked man taketh a gift out of the bosom to pervert the ways of judgment.

I tend to think of a “bribe” (7810) as a bit of sleazy perversion that is used to attract the unscrupulous.  This might imply that it is given out of the “bosom” (2436), or secret place, in order to bring about what is viewed by both parties as a good result.  There is a temptation to think that our view of a situation is the view of virtue and in this one case the ends justifies the means.  Have you ever been checking out at the store and the clerk somehow enters a lower price than you expected?  It is very easy to rationalize that they put in a higher price another time and so it is only fair.  It might even be true but it is the beginning of making excuses and fudging on the strait and narrow.

We usually don’t have the temptation to “pervert” (5186) “justice” (4941) is big steps.  Satan has a hard time getting us to commit the big sin.  It starts small and grows from there. 

So?  Keep an eye out for the little compromises that are offered to us.  Some may be just fine.  Others may be a bribe from Hell. 

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Scale of Eternity

(Proverbs 16:11 KJV)  A just weight and balance are the LORD'S: all the weights of the bag are his work.

You may have a different dream but I don’t see myself ever selling produce or running a business weighing recycled aluminum.  The ideas here about honest scales would seem to apply to someone else.  Not so.  The principle is the issue.  There are many ways in which I can cheat without going near weights and measures. 

How do I determine whether I am justified in returning a product I have bought?  Have you ever been tempted to purchase an expensive item, use it the one time you need, and then return it for a full refund?  I hear there are some women who do this with dresses.  I can picture doing it when I need a specialty tool.  What is happening is that the consumer is taking advantage of a retailer who is trying to be fair with his customers.  What we don’t like to admit is that this kind of misrepresentation is a form of lying .  I hope you understand how angry God gets when we lie.

So?  Business ethics are also the responsibility of the customer.  It is a matter of eternal significance.

Monday, April 15, 2019

Only the Righteous

(Proverbs 15:6 KJV)  In the house of the righteous is much treasure: but in the revenues of the wicked is trouble.

You may be familiar with the saying, “One man’s trash is another man’s ‘treasure’ (2633)”.  In NASB terms that would be “One man’s waste is another man’s ‘wealth’ (2633)”.  If you have ever gone to a yard sale you know the feeling.  What one person is getting rid of another just has to have.  This kind of attitude is why I could never work on a garbage truck.  I would bring home so much cool stuff that it would be grounds for divorce.

The key point here is that God blesses the “righteous” (6662).  That may or may not involve what the world calls wealth but whatever your equity, He brings a rich life.

So?  While it may be better to be rich and miserable than poor and miserable it is best to be blessed in whatever socio-economic group you find yourself.  Roy Orbison recorded a song called “Only the Lonely”.  Ours might be “Only the Righteous. 

Sunday, April 14, 2019

A Full Quiver

(Proverbs 14:28 KJV)  In the multitude of people is the king's honour: but in the want of people is the destruction of the prince.

I often point out basic differences between what the Bible teaches and what our culture endorses.  One of those differences has to do with population, size of families and children.  The pagan culture of our day is worried about the planet because Gaia, the earth goddess, is at the center of their worship.  To them the job is to preserve the planet by subduing humanity.  They forget that if they have their way the comfortable life style that they enjoy will be gone.  It will be back to starvation, the mercy of the elements and living in caves.

The repeated emphasis of the Bible is that God wants people to have children and they are to be stewards of the earth.  They are not to exploit but to subdue and manage.  You see it in God’s words to Adam,
(Genesis 1:28 KJV)  And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.
You see it in the Psalms,
(Psalms 127:3-5 KJV)  Lo, children are an heritage of the LORD: and the fruit of the womb is his reward.  As arrows are in the hand of a mighty man; so are children of the youth.  Happy is the man that hath his quiver full of them: they shall not be ashamed, but they shall speak with the enemies in the gate.
So?  Do a lot of praying about your ideas of family planning.  Children are a blessing, not a curse. 

Saturday, April 13, 2019

Mouth Meal

(Proverbs 13:2 KJV)  A man shall eat good by the fruit of his mouth: but the soul of the transgressors shall eat violence.

What is wrong with simple literal translations?  The KJV has it in “eats” (398) while the NASB confuses it with “enjoys”.  I think of many ways this picture is used.  When an athlete gets buried by the competition we talk about how he “ate it”.  We know what it means to “eat our words”.  That is probably the idea here.

How is the meal when you have to eat your words?  If we have been positive and honest then the taste can be quite pleasant.  If we have been critical and stretching things a bit they can come back to bite us. 

So?  If you are going to “eat it” keep in mind that you have a say in what the main course involves.