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.

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Walk Tall

(Proverbs 30:29 KJV)  There be three things which go well, yea, four are comely in going:

Is it desirable to  be “comely” (stately NASB) (3190)?   I think of kings, queens and nobles but the word simply means “glad or pleasing.” 

How do you walk?  Have you watched the way people move around?  I think of the times I have been shopping and I see people that don’t seem like they could stay upright if they did not have a shopping cart to lean on.  You see them everywhere.  I feel their pain.  There is no spring in their step.

A lot depends on what you lean on.  Spiritually speaking we can lean on our own understanding or we can trust in the Lord.    That should bring to mind another part of Proverbs.
(Proverbs 3:5-6 KJV)  Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.  In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.
So?  When you get out of your car, go into work and see people who know you, ask yourself if they see someone walking stately or someone who dreads what the day may bring.  Trust that the Lord will give you the resources to deal with whatever he allows to drop in front of you. 

Monday, April 29, 2013

Snares Work

(Proverbs 29:6 KJV)  In the transgression of an evil man there is a snare: but the righteous doth sing and rejoice.

Notice that this does not say “transgression” (6588) (28:2) traps a righteous man.  The proclamation is to “evil” (7451b) men. 

What does that mean in practical terms?  Today the message I am getting is that when the righteous sin they recognize it as sin, repent of that sin and confess it to God.  The result?  Let’s look at a verse you should all know.
(1 John 1:9 KJV)  If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
How do the evil respond?  In denial.  Read the next verse in I John:
(1 John 1:10 KJV)  If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.
They are trapped in their sins and the denial keeps them there.

So?  Do a little check.  Only you and God can read your fine print.  He is waiting to see which direction you  choose to go. 

Sunday, April 28, 2013

It’s a Keeper

(Proverbs 28:7 KJV)  Whoso keepeth the law is a wise son: but he that is a companion of riotous men shameth his father.

A believer “keeps” (5341) the “law” (8451).  I know that goes against our Protestant mantra of being under grace and not the law.  We are under grace.  So was Noah.  Grace is not a New Testament concept.  It was not a new idea with the Apostle Paul.

And the Law is not just an Old Testament concept.  Jesus spoke a lot about obedience and never about grace.

So what does it mean to keep the law?  This word means to “watch, guard, keep.”  It is much deeper than just following rules.  It involves making sure that standards are maintained.  It means obedience.  Notice that it is the product of a “wise” (discerning NASB) (995) son.  The contrast would be the fool.

So?  Put some energy into walking straight.  We can do nothing without the grace of God but He seems to infer that He expects us to do our part, whatever that is to you.

Saturday, April 27, 2013


(Proverbs 27:7 KJV)  The full soul loatheth an honeycomb; but to the hungry soul every bitter thing is sweet.

I like the KJV here.  The KJV has “full” (7649) instead of the “sated” of the NASB. When you read it in its context it seems like a person with a problem.  In reality it simply means that you have had enough.  Your needs have been met.  Even good things don’t grab your attention.

The KJV also translates literally when it has “soul” (man NASB) (5315).  This is the word for the inner self.  It sounds good to have a full soul.   If I have a full soul I am less inclined to notice a temptation, let alone give in to it.  Of course, it depends on what I am full of.

So?  Get a full soul.  Fill it up with Jesus, with the Glory of God, with the written Word.  This does not happen by accident or in a once a week, Sunday morning service.  What else of importance do you try to get by with once a week? 

Friday, April 26, 2013

Fool’s Folly

(Proverbs 26:11 KJV)  As a dog returneth to his vomit, so a fool returneth to his folly.

The shaping of a “fool” (3684) is not the mistake but that he “repeats” (8138) his mistake.  A fool can’t seem to learn.  You have heard the saying, “Fool me once, shame on you.  Fool me twice, shame on me.” 

Why don’t people learn? 

Some are just too slow mentally to retain things.  These kind of people exist.  Admit it.  Accept it.  They are not common enough to explain fools.  Similar to this are the people who are not developmentally ready to learn something.  Young children cannot think abstractly.  That is normal.  They will grow out of it.

Some might actually have a learning disorder.  These people also exist.  The ugly secret is that they are not as common as public education makes you want to believe.  Many times we simply make excuses for people or refuse to discipline children.  It is often easier to label a child hyperactive and drug him than it is to apply consistent discipline. 

Some are simply committed to sin and refuse to learn because that would mean they must change.

So?  Keep in mind that “I didn’t know” will not be a very good defense on judgment day because God can see your mind and heart.  Don’t be a fool.  The choice may be up to you. 

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Caution: Evil Ahead

(Proverbs 25:19 KJV)  Confidence in an unfaithful man in time of trouble is like a broken tooth, and a foot out of joint.

Is it possible to discern the “unfaithful" (faithless NASB) (898) before the day of “trouble” (6869a)?  Sometimes the answer is going to be “no.”  Sometimes it will be possible.  Good decisions require a couple of things. 

First, be observant.  Our eyes and ears are capable of picking up more than we notice.  Our nervous system has built-in radars that make us duck and flinch before we are consciously aware of a problem.  Our hand will jerk away from a hot surface before we feel the pain.  If we are alert, our personal radar can do the same.  When your intuition tells you something is wrong listen with discernment.  Don’t get panicked but keep your mind plugged in.

Second, remember that evil exists, that evil people exist.  I have said it before.  I will say it again.  It doesn’t take much to recognize all of the scandals that have taken place.  The tip of the iceberg is in the priesthood and education.  Evil goes much deeper.  These issues would not be half as sensational if the perpetrators were the neighborhood pervert instead of the nice man next door.

So?  Don’t panic.  Be aware.  The Holy Spirit is willing to be active and assisting in your alertness. 

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Little Things

(Proverbs 24:33 KJV)  Yet a little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to sleep:

It seems like such a trite statement but we have all heard it:  “It is the ‘little’ (4592) things that count.”  This takes on new meaning to us in the modern age.  We talk about nano-seconds and millimicrons.  We know about bacteria and amoeba. 

It is just a little bug that brings on AIDS.  It is a little error that causes a computer to crash.  It is just a little habit that can destroy a life.

So?  Pay attention to the little things.  They, this is such an obvious statement, make a big difference.  You saw that coming.  It is still true. 

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

That’s Strange

(Proverbs 23:33 KJV)  Thine eyes shall behold strange women, and thine heart shall utter perverse things.

Here we run into the mystery of being a Bible translator.  “Strange women” (strange things NASB) (2114a) is the same word that we looked at yesterday that the NASB translated “adulteress.” The KJV was consistent with “strange woman.”  Either way the point is the same.  When we drink our mind plays tricks on us.

I have never been drunk but I have been feverish.  One of the most difficult times for me is when I have just fallen into a deep sleep and someone wakes me up.  I know I am awake.  I know my mind isn’t working.  I can’t do anything about it.  Why would someone seek this kind of condition on purpose.  It is beyond me.

So?  You are not me.  Maybe you understand why.  The issue is that God says, “No.”  Moderation is the key is you drink and by moderation I think it means “very little” not “average” for the crowd. 

Monday, April 22, 2013

Forbidden Knowledge

(Proverbs 22:14 KJV)  The mouth of strange women is a deep pit: he that is abhorred of the LORD shall fall therein.

The definition for “strange women” (adulteress NASB) (2114a) is basically “stranger.”  In the Hebrew there is one subset in the definition in which it means “prostitute” or “harlot.”  I can only assume that is the case here.  The NASB has several different words translated “adulteress.”  The KJV only uses the English word three times, never of this one.

In this case the idea is that two people are violating the marriage covenant.  In the Bible the act of sexual intercourse is often called “to know.”  It is the ultimate knowing.  It is yada, a word that is also used to describe knowing God.  Sex in marriage has that high a place in God’s plan.  To get involved outside marriage is a denial of that covenant and is second only to idolatry which you can think of as adultery toward God.

So?  There are commitments we make in life.  We make them to God.  We make them to our spouse.  We break that covenant at the risk of eternal hell.  Morality matters.  Faithfulness is a basic in the life of righteousness. 

Sunday, April 21, 2013

The Hidden

(Proverbs 21:27 KJV)  The sacrifice of the wicked is abomination: how much more, when he bringeth it with a wicked mind?

Motivation is an important issue in God’s eyes.  Since God can read our hearts and minds it is not enough to say the right words.  We get used to cliches such as the exchange of “How are you?”  “Fine.”  We grow comfortable with the little lies that we tell in order to avoid confrontation or loss.  While we are going our way, God is able to read our “wicked mind" (evil intent NASB) (2154). 

As humans we cannot know what others are really thinking.  We cannot know what is in their deepest heart.  Don’t assume that God is so limited.

So?  Examine your heart.  Maybe you could call it an attitude check, maybe honesty.  It may be time for reevaluation or repentance. 

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Mock Deception

(Proverbs 20:1 KJV)  Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise.

How do you know Godly character when you see it?  Sometimes it is marked by the positive traits, sometimes by the negative.  “Mocker” (3917b) is one of the negatives.  By my count it is used 19 times in Proverbs out of 27 times in the entire Old Testament.  That tells me it is an important concept.  It is one to be avoided.

It’s most common translation is “scoffer.”  When I look at the definition I see that it is one who talks arrogantly.  Here the implication is that wine can be a catalyst for such sinful behavior.

So?  Some things can be avoided.  Wine is something that tends to lower your discernment and self control.  Draw your own conclusions.

Friday, April 19, 2013


(Proverbs 19:9 KJV)  A false witness shall not be unpunished, and he that speaketh lies shall perish.

This concept of “false” (8267) “witness” (5707) is a recurring theme, not only in Proverbs but in the entire Bible.  One of the reasons is that we are so good at making excuses for the times that we lie.  We have many names for it and are very forgiving of ourselves and our loved ones, but a lie is still a lie.

We often get all worked up over abortion, fornication, homosexuality and murder.  To God “lies” (3577) are just as bad.   Liars will “perish” (6).  This is a promise that goes beyond the grave.  Lies have a special attraction to the wrath of God.
    REV 21:8 "But for the cowardly and unbelieving and abominable and murderers and immoral persons and sorcerers and idolaters and all liars, their part will be in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death."
If you are constantly telling lies you might want to ask yourself if you have really been washed in the blood of the Lamb.

So?  Don’t make excuses, for yourself, your children, or your favorite politician.  God isn’t interested in excuses, just repentance. 

Thursday, April 18, 2013

The Payoff

(Proverbs 18:12 KJV)  Before destruction the heart of man is haughty, and before honour is humility.

Quickly reading this verse, I get it all wrong.  My first reaction is that the man is standing, staring “destruction” (7667) in the face and is being “haughty” (1361b).  It didn’t seem to make sense, and with good reason.  It didn’t.  The “before” (6440) is in time, not location.

It often seems to us that the arrogant, egotistical type A is the successful stereotype.  On the short term, maybe.  Over the long term this type of behavior will destroy.  God demands the model given by Jesus when He demanded humility.
(Matthew 5:39 KJV)  But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also.
We are not called to be people who conquer in our own power.  We live in the power of God which works through out submission.
(2 Corinthians 12:9 KJV)  And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
So?  Don’t conquer, console.  Don’t demand your way, delight in His.  You will be much more satisfied with the payoff. 

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Another Cover Up

(Proverbs 17:9 KJV)  He that covereth a transgression seeketh love; but he that repeateth a matter separateth very friends.

The first phrase in this verse brings to mind other passages.  First, in Proverbs.
(Proverbs 10:12 KJV)  Hatred stirreth up strifes: but love covereth all sins.
Than a passage in the Love Chapter.
(1 Corinthians 13:7 KJV)  Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.
In this case the word “beareth” literally means to cover.

And from the Apostle Peter,
(1 Peter 4:8 KJV)  And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins.
And remember that “charity” in the KJV is the Greek word agape which is the highest form of love to Christians.

So?  If you are a follower of Jesus and accept the Bible as God’s word it is hard to get away from the demand that we love.  And love means that we don’t return to people the evils that they send our way.  Get involved in a cover up today.  Love through forgiveness.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013


(Proverbs 16:8 KJV)  Better is a little with righteousness than great revenues without right.

As I looked at the definition to “little” (4592) I learned a couple of new words.  They are not complicated and intellectual.  They are just ones I have never really thought of before.  I assume they are real words because my spell-check doesn’t underline them.  The definition included “littleness” and “fewness.” 

This implies a condition or a state of being, not an amount.  It indicates how we relate to our world not how much we have accumulated.  It speaks to me today of humility and a willingness to be content with what you have in life.

We are not talking about being content with starvation or privation.  Most of us will never know those things so don’t go there.  I am talking about the Christian attitude summed up by the apostle Paul.
(Philippians 2:3 KJV)  Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.
I am more familiar with this translation,
(Philippians 2:3 NAS77)  Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind let each of you regard one another as more important than himself;
So?  Be a servant.  It doesn’t sit well with our culture but it allows us to sit with our God. 

Monday, April 15, 2013

Fat Bones

(Proverbs 15:30 KJV)  The light of the eyes rejoiceth the heart: and a good report maketh the bones fat.

Who wants fat “bones” (6106)?  Have you ever thought about it?  I haven’t. 

When you read books about health and nutrients you read about fat.  When you buy a bag of hard candy it brags about being “fat free.”  Obesity is a matter of too much fat.  Here it gets some good press.  What gives?

One of the functions of fat in the body is padding and cushioning.  A certain amount of fat, in the right places, will save your body from injury.  I have lost weight and gotten older.  When I decided I needed to get into some minor exercise I found that I had bones sticking out in places they did not stick out before.  I could no longer lay on the floor flat on my back.  Now I need a cushioning pad to keep the bones from jarring. 

Good news can give us the cushion to bear with the jars of life.  The ultimate good news is called the gospel.  In fact the Greek word translated “gospel” literally means “good message.”  If you convert the letters to modern form it becomes “evangelism.”

So?  If you have not embraced the good news of Jesus, do so.  It will not remove all the bumps of life but it will give you the spiritual padding to keep going in victory. 

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Wicked Promise

(Proverbs 14:32 KJV)  The wicked is driven away in his wickedness: but the righteous hath hope in his death.

Is this an interesting way of expressing the choices for the afterlife?  The directions seem to be correct, at least the first one.  The person going to Hell is “thrust down” (1760).  The word has a long definition with many nuances.  I get a picture of a cosmic, spiritual game of King of the Hill.  If I remember it correctly a bunch of children with energy overload find a high spot and see who can stay on top while all the others try to push him off.

Or it could just be a statement about “what goes around, comes around.”  Either way it is a promise to the “wicked” (7563) of the world. 

So?  This might be a warning to mend our ways.  It might give us a reason to encourage others to change theirs.  Either way, evil will be rewarded as it deserves. 

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Diminished Returns

(Proverbs 13:11 KJV)  Wealth gotten by vanity shall be diminished: but he that gathereth by labour shall increase.

At first reading this seemed to be an attack on “wealth” (1952).  The problem with that is it is not a consistent understanding of prosperity and riches.  The Bible does not condemn wealth, it demands accountability and stewardship. 

The real villain is “vanity” (fraud NASB) (1892).  Here the NASB margin tells us that the KJV is more literal.  What is the major element of this wrongness?  The problem is not the bank balance but the attitude behind it.  Self centered, egotistical, narcissistic attitudes towards what we have will send us to hell.

Notice that for one action the reward is “diminished" (dwindles NASB) (4591) and for the other it grows.

So?  You can be poor and greedy.  You can be rich and generous.  It comes back to the attitude which is determined by whether Jesus is really Lord in your life. 

Friday, April 12, 2013

What Number on Your Jersey?

(Proverbs 12:8 KJV)  A man shall be commended according to his wisdom: but he that is of a perverse heart shall be despised.

What does this tell us in the choices we make and the causes we support?  Think about this as a command, not an observation.  This is the only way it makes sense to me because at this point in history I don’t see it happening this way, even in the church. 

Who are we to “commend” (praise NASB) (1984b)?  It is clear there are people worthy.  We need to find them.  The quality looked for here is “wisdom” (insight NASB) (7922).  To see what that means compare it with the perversion that is condemned in the second part of the verse. 

Another way of looking at it is, “Who are our heroes?”  Do you get excited about certain athletes who have shown themselves to be moral reprobates?  Do you talk positively about entertainers who are making garbage out of our culture and polluting the minds of our young?  Do you wear clothes that advertise companies that put out catalogs that another generation would have considered pornographic?

So?  Think about it.  Are you lifting up wisdom in the little actions of your life?  Are you encouraging perversion by the clothes you wear?  I need to take another look at my wardrobe, let alone the topics of my conversations. 

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Ignorance Is a Choice

(Proverbs 11:9 KJV)  An hypocrite with his mouth destroyeth his neighbour: but through knowledge shall the just be delivered.

The comparison of the KJV and the NASB bring out an interesting association in the meaning of “hypocrite” (2611).  The choices given in the resource books are “hypocritical, godless, profane, hypocrite, irreligious.”  The NASB uses “godless” consistently; the KJV, “hypocritical.”  It would seem to me that there is no connection, but I am a child of modern pagan culture that ignores the deeper truths of the Bible.

The point I think that is important is that the godless really do know better but act like they don’t.  It is not a matter of ignorance or difference of opinion, it is hypocrisy.  For an explanation of the Biblical view read over Romans 1:18-22.  Let me just give you one verse to remind you of the teaching of Paul.
(Romans 1:20 KJV)  For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:
You see, the person who advocates homosexuality as just a different opinion knows in his heart that he is wrong.  The person who says that abortion is a woman’s choice is working hard to ignore what her heart has really said.

So?  Steep yourself in scripture and build your opinions on the eternal truth not the cultural standard of the day.  It makes a difference, for you and those around you. 

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Abiding Wisdom

(Proverbs 10:31 KJV)  The mouth of the just bringeth forth wisdom: but the froward tongue shall be cut out.

It would be nice to believe that my mouth “bringeth forth” (flows with NASB) (5107) wisdom.  The Hebrew word means “to bear fruit.”  This is a word picture that was common in those days but we are losing sight of.  For today look at just one of the things that Jesus had to say about fruit.
(John 15:5 KJV)  I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.
This is the promise/demand of Jesus.  We are to abide in Him.  When we do that we produce fruit.  An extension of that is that our mouths produce wisdom.

So?  What did your mouth produce yesterday?  What will it produce today?  Abide.  Produce wisdom.  Or not. 

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

A Good Place to Stop

(Proverbs 9:4 KJV)  Whoso is simple, let him turn in hither: as for him that wanteth understanding, she saith to him,

I don’t know if you travel much or if you stay in motels when you travel.  I am sure, if you have, you have seen all the dynamic advertising that is along the side of the road saying “Stay here.”  Okay, it isn’t that simple but they make great claims about the amenities of their establishment.  They are saying “turn” (5493) in “hither" (here NASB) (2008).  Remember you heard it in Proverbs first.

Sometimes you can assume that all will be well.  My wife is into a chain that charges more than I like but we are confident that when we get to the room it will be everything we expect.  If it isn’t they will make it right.  It is understood as part of their label.

Other motels we ask to see the room before we put any money down.  You never know what you are going to get unto you see it.

Some places we drive by.  We know better.

So?  Wisdom is calling you.  You need to stop somewhere.  Why not go for the one with guarantees and a track record? 

Monday, April 8, 2013

Chicken Big

(Proverbs 8:28 KJV)  When he established the clouds above: when he strengthened the fountains of the deep:

Have you stopped to think today about how much you assume about your world?  We assume that certain patterns and norms can be depended on.  When we read a story about Chicken Little running around screaming “The sky is falling!” we recognize it as absurd.  That is the point of the story.  The reason we see it as absurd is that we live in a world created by the God of the Bible.  We assume the sun will come up because God put it there and sent it on its cycle.  When we read about the sun standing still for Joshua we recognize it as an unusual, one time miracle of God.  We don’t worry about the sun stopping just because it feels like it or because we did something wrong.

Read your history about the cultures that felt they had to make human sacrifices to appease the sun god and get him to return the next day.  Think about all the pagan rituals that went into the winter solstice so that the sun would not go away forever.  Think about all the things that our God has assured us we don’t need to worry about.

So?  We live in a world of physical stability.  Be thankful for the assurance that gives us.  Praise God for His creation and His revelation about it.  Be Chicken Big and announce that the sky is not falling. 

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Money Bags and You

(Proverbs 7:20 KJV)  He hath taken a bag of money with him, and will come home at the day appointed.

In this verse we have the evil adulteress listing the reasons why it is okay for this naive young man to sin.  Now let me ask you, why do the actions of another justify our breaking the rules?  Have you ever had those times when you say, “Everyone else is doing it.”  I know I have.  Saying that is not the problem.  The issue comes when we act on it.

As followers of the Eternal God we know that He is aware of all that we do.  We know that He does not accept excuses.  He does not look the other way.  He does not grin and wink.  He sees all and knows all. 

That is why we are different than those around us.  We know there is a standard.  We know what that standard is.  We know that when we stand before the judgment seat of God it won’t do us any good to say, “But Lucy used to lie to Ricky.”  We know right.  We should act on it.

So?  You are responsible for your decisions and actions.  Accept it. 

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Unisex, Kinda

(Proverbs 6:20 KJV)  My son, keep thy father's commandment, and forsake not the law of thy mother:

Verses like this make me believe that the many statements concerning fathers have a parallel truth involving mothers.  This form is fairly common in Proverbs. 

One of the things that is hard for some to understand is the seeming paradox of a patriarchal society which gives women a place of honor.  The Bible teaches that women have a worth and a dignity that should be acknowledged.  In ancient cultures the Jews gave their women more freedom than the surrounding cultures.  It is a part of our belief.  Women have the image of God just like men.
(Genesis 1:27 KJV)  So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.
And in the New Testament we see this repeated and also see it extended.
(Galatians 3:28 KJV)  There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.
So?  Treat both men and women with dignity.  It is part of who we are and who they are.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Spiritual Sticky Notes

(Proverbs 5:7 KJV)  Hear me now therefore, O ye children, and depart not from the words of my mouth.

How much does it take to get you to “depart” (5493) from the “words” (561) given to you?  Have you ever heard the expression “in one ear and out the other”?  Sometimes I think God mumbles that to Himself.

Maybe it would help if we could develop some sort of spiritual sticky notes.  My daughter was really into those.  She would have every surface in reach covered with them.  It worked for her.  Maybe it would work for us.

Try it.  Listen for the voice of God.  It might come in a sermon on Sunday.  It might come as you read the Bible.  It might come completely unbidden as the Holy Spirit puts a thought into your mind. 

Write it down.  That in itself will help you remember. 

Put it where you can find it.

So?  God is trying to reach you.  Believe it.  Do your part to be connected.  Do your part to remember what He is trying to say.  It can have consequences, good and bad. 

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Violence or Valor

(Proverbs 3:31 KJV)  Envy thou not the oppressor, and choose none of his ways.
Why would we “envy” (7065) a “man” (376) who is an “oppressor" (violence NASB) (2555)?  That is a good question, but we do it all the time.  

But we do envy.  I don’t go to the movies much and I never watch TV unless someone else has it on but I do read action novels.  There is something in us that enjoys watching or reading about men of violence.  It is such a part of the macho culture we see around us.  We are part of that culture.

The condemnation is not of soldiers and protectors.  All you need to do is do a search for the term “mighty men of valor” in the KJV and you will come up with hundreds of listings such as,
(Joshua 1:14 KJV)  Your wives, your little ones, and your cattle, shall remain in the land which Moses gave you on this side Jordan; but ye shall pass before your brethren armed, all the mighty men of valour, and help them;
Neither the Old Testament nor the New Testament condemns the soldier who is doing his duty.  The problem is the person who lives by that violence. 

So?  Know and recognize the difference.  Violence for violence sake is to be avoided.  Defense of the weak and righteous is expected.  Sometimes that requires mighty men of valor. 

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Seeker Friendly

(Proverbs 2:4 KJV)  If thou seekest her as silver, and searchest for her as for hid treasures;

As I was reading this chapter today I saw again the parallel with the words of Jesus.
(Matthew 7:7 KJV)  Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you:
Do you see the promise to the seeker?  Do you see how the promise is fulfilled?  If you look over the verses leading up to this you see receiving, inclining, crying, lifting.  If you read on you see similar actions and positions.  They come down to “seek” (1245).

God has reached out to us.  He prepared the Old and New Testaments, He sent His Son, He provides the Holy Spirit, He established the church.  Grace and Providence are doing their part.

So?  I would say the ball is in our court.  God was, is and will be active.  Seek.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Happy Prosperity Day

(Proverbs 1:32 KJV)  For the turning away of the simple shall slay them, and the prosperity of fools shall destroy them.

The KJV and the NASB pick totally different words here.  If we put them together we get to the lesson for this April Fools Day.  The KJV talks about the “prosperity” (7962) of fools.  The NASB uses “complacency” (7962).  At first they seem to be two different concepts but think about it.  Who tend to be the most smug and self-righteous about their place in society?  I think of the rich and the famous.

Think about how movie actors want to tell us about the science of global warming.  Think about how people in the music industry want to lecture us about the economics of poverty and hunger.  Think about how politicians want to write laws to establish justice.  April Fools Day indeed.

So?  What about those of us who follow the living Christ?  Do we think we have arrived?  Are we coasting on our spiritual knowledge?  Are we complacent?  Am I complacent?  It is time to examine my foolishness.