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.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Why Not What

(Proverbs 27:4 KJV)  Wrath is cruel, and anger is outrageous; but who is able to stand before envy?

When you consider it, these are traits that God exhibits.  God shows “wrath” (2534) and “anger” (639).  God is a God of  “jealousy” (7068).  We might get wrapped up in which is worse and how they are different, but I have a different point, and I think it is important:  Why is jealousy okay when God does it and not when we do it?

First of all, this verse does not categorically condemn these actions.  It is simply making the point that jealousy is more powerful.

But more to the point, how come we have a double standard?  It really is not a double standard.  It is another example of how sin in perversion of righteousness.  I have said it before.  I will say it again.  Most perversions are the twisting and misusing of a gift that God has given us.  Even original sin is a warping of the ability to make choices.  We get angry for petty, self-serving reasons.  God only gets angry because eternal values have been violated.  When God demands our total devotion it is because He deserves it.  We don’t.

Consider the following:
(Ephesians 4:26 KJV)  Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath:
This would imply that the sin is not in the anger but in the way it is used.  We misuse anger, God will not.

Second, there is a privilege that comes from position.  As Americans we have a hard time with this, but remember that the denial of social class that is part of our blood is not universal.  In my middle school classroom I will tell a student, “Be quiet.”  Every once in a day some smart mouth will say back to me, “You be quiet.”  This tends to generate wrath and anger in me because I am a bit jealous of my standing.  If he asks me, “How come you can say it and I can’t?”  I pull out my wallet and begin a parade of drivers license, credit cards, voting stubs, etc.  This is the equivalent of the lecture that God gave Job.  Because I am Teacher.  Because I am Adult. 

Students don’t appreciate the fact that teachers are (in some schools) above them.  Humans don’t appreciate the fact that God is above them.  It gets under their skin.  It leads to denial and all kinds of anti-social acts.  It was the argument that Satan used in the garden.  It is still popular today.

So?  It never hurts to remind ourselves about who is God.  This will lead you to the wonder of grace and forgiveness and help you to understand the hymn that said, “...for such a worm as I.”  Praise God for His wrath, anger, jealousy which produce His patience and kindness.


Gorges Smythe said...

this doesn't relate directly to this post, but the last two churches we've attended were nearly destroyed ny envy.

Pumice said...

I don't know about you, but the tangents the Holy Spirit takes me on during sermons and posts are very helpful.

Grace and Peace