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.

Monday, September 30, 2013

Truth and Tradition

(Proverbs 30:1 KJV)  The words of Agur the son of Jakeh, even the prophecy: the man spake unto Ithiel, even unto Ithiel and Ucal,

Many time we have things that we believe to be truth that are only tradition.  Truth is something that is eternal.  Tradition is what is accepted because someone in the past said so.  Tradition may be true, or not.  Truth may become traditional.  It is still and always truth.

The beginning of this verse in Proverbs reminds us of the difference between truth and tradition.  How do we know that Solomon wrote Proverbs?  We don’t.  We know he wrote most of it because it says so in the text but other portions, such as this, are attributed to other authors.  How do we know that Matthew wrote the Gospel of Matthew?  We don’t.  It is tradition.  It is a position that has been adopted by the church.  Is it true?  I think so but it is not an article of faith.  How do we know that Paul wrote Philippians?  It says so.  How do we know that Paul wrote Hebrews?  We don’t because that title is an affectation of the KJV.

So?  Believe and stand on what is true.  Enjoy the warmth and strength of traditions.  Know the difference.  Read the Word. 

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Upright and Outta Sight

(Proverbs 29:10 KJV)  The bloodthirsty hate the upright: but the just seek his soul.

If you are one of the “upright” (3477) you are part of a long and noble tradition.  Down through the ages righteous followers of the living God have been seeing people with problems and doing what they can to help them.  Hospitals, schools, orphanages, all were the original outgrowth of upright people doing what they do to help others at their own expense.  Yet our culture keeps mocking these people of faith.

They mock those of us who have a morality based on the standards of God.  Sexual purity in all of its extensions is the butt of jokes.  Honest people are smucks.  Hard work is for fools.  Belief in a Creator God is for simpletons. 

The world needs to pull us down so they can feel good about themselves.  It is why graffiti is written on clean walls first.  It is why the new books are the best surface for profanity and vulgar words. 

So?  Expect it but don’t accept it.  If you know what the world is doing it makes sense.  If it makes sense it is easier to weather.  Yes, they are out to get you.  Rejoice. 
(Matthew 5:11 KJV)  Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.
Jesus knew it was coming.

Saturday, September 28, 2013

A Profit and Loss Statement

(Proverbs 28:13 KJV)  He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy.

I think Solomon is talking here about deceiving by design.  We all have things we cover up in embarrassment or panic.  It is a natural desire:  I don’t want to look stupid.  This is a life style.

Some people have personalities built on hypocrisy and fraud.  They deliberately cover up their motives, goals and priorities.  They “covereth” (conceal NASB) (3680) rather than reveal.  They speak lies, planned and choreographed.  They tend to have a short term vision.

God promises that these people will not “prosper” (6743b).  There is a difference between short term profit and long term prosperity. 

So?  Focus on the eternal principles.  They have daily application even if you don’t see the pay off.  It is part of walking by faith. 

Friday, September 27, 2013


(Proverbs 27:20 KJV)  Hell and destruction are never full; so the eyes of man are never satisfied.

What does it take to satisfy?  The NASB uses “satisfied” (7646) twice, the KJV “full” and “satisfied.”  Both times it is the same word in the Hebrew.  In the choices for translation we have words like “sated” and “glut.”  This is that desire of gluttons to eat until bursting.  It is what makes us eat a whole bag of potato chips.  Be honest, the second half didn’t taste near as good as the first but we were not “satisfied” (7646) until all was gone.  The chances are we then looked around to see what else was available.  If you don’t know what I am talking about, count your blessings.

Evil lusts, whether they be in the spiritual realm or in our hearts, keep pushing us to excess and dissipation. 

So?  Be aware of the sin of excess.  I guess it might be better to say stop denying that it exists.  Quit ignoring it.  Moderation and balance are the hard things in life.  Pray that God would help you today to exercise those virtues. 

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Public Exposure

(Proverbs 26:26 KJV)  Whose hatred is covered by deceit, his wickedness shall be shewed before the whole congregation.

“Wickedness” (7463a) will eventually be “shewed” (revealed NASB) (1540) in public.  The question I have today is, “Will anyone care?”

The government doesn’t seem to care.  The media doesn’t care.  The universities don’t care.  More and more the churches don’t care.

People think that they are so clever.  The evil that they dabble in won’t touch them.  They will grab theirs and run. 

There will be an accounting.  It may come during this life.  It will definitely come in eternity. 

So?  Are you walking in integrity?  Are you living the way you know you should?  God has given you the ability to make decisions and offers His grace and Holy Spirit to help you.  Take the high road.  Don’t get exposed. 

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

It’s Golden

(Proverbs 25:22 KJV)  For thou shalt heap coals of fire upon his head, and the LORD shall reward thee.

Is this the reasoning behind Jesus’ command to turn the other cheek and go the extra mile?  The context would seem to imply it but this has some serious differences.  Jesus is talking about how be act when we are the weak party.  Here is addressing the opposite case.  In both situations we are to treat them with courtesy but our motivation is different.

In both cases there is a kind of reverse psychology involved.  Actually it isn’t psychology it is philosophy.  The world says revenge is acceptable.  The world says it is understandable.  The world says certain behaviors are normal.  The Bible says it is wrong.

We are to always follow what has come to be called the Golden Rule. 
(Matthew 7:12 KJV)  Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets.
It is the practical application of the love of God in our hearts.  We may have people who are our enemies but we cannot treat them that way.  We may have people who take advantage of us but for us, turn-about may be fair play but it is still sin.

So?  You want easy?  I can’t give it to you.  All I can give you is holy and loving.  Actually, God gives it and wants you to pass it on. 

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Personal Wars

(Proverbs 24:6 KJV)  For by wise counsel thou shalt make thy war: and in multitude of counsellors there is safety.

This seems to be a simple statement.  As I was reading through I noticed that the Bible editors had put in a footnote about the literal meaning of the phrase “make war” (wage war NASB).  The marginal reading says this literally means “make battle for yourself.”  Since most of us will never be forced to “make” (wage NASB) (6213a) “war” (4421) this makes it a little more personal.  We all do fight battles on a daily basis. 

The battles we fight may be personal temptations.  The spectrum extends to standing up like Martin Luther in a public forum and declaring “Here I stand...”  We face conflict and difficulty.

The advice here is to seek “wise counsel” (wise guidance NASB) (8458).  Don’t be a loner.  We all have people who will listen to us.  The challenge is to find someone who is wise.  When someone gives you advice look to see if they have the character and evidence of spiritual maturity that makes their opinion worth consideration.  When you find them, treasure them.

So?  Do your own homework.  Pray and listen to the Spirit.  Listen to those who have the wisdom of age and experience.  Make decisions in the battles of your life.

Monday, September 23, 2013

How Is the View?

(Proverbs 23:7 KJV)  For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he: Eat and drink, saith he to thee; but his heart is not with thee.

How do you view yourself?  Neither the KJV or the NASB make this word clear.  One says “himself” (5315) and the other says “heart.”  This is a very common word in the Hebrew and is one of those words that points to the soul or the inner man.  In fact the most common translation in both versions is “soul.”  It is not just a simple pronoun to be passed over. 

How does your soul think?  What is at your core?  This is getting down to the basic person that you are. 

The Bible teaches that we are all born in sin.  It says that we have all sinned.  That is the bad news.  That is who you were and might still be if you have not seriously met Jesus.  The good news is that the title used for you after you meet Him is “saint” not “sinner.”  The good news is that the inner person, the “himself” or “heart,” can be changed.  That makes a different you.

So?  How is your heart?  How is your inner person?  God wants to look down and see the heart of a saint inside your “himself.”  Trust and obey. 

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Train(ing) Tracks

(Proverbs 22:6 KJV)  Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.

If you have been around people who work with children you may have heard the statement, “The nut doesn’t fall far from the tree.”  I believe in free will so I know there are exceptions but if I really want to know what kind of parenting is going on I don’t listen to the parents but watch the children.  I have been in countless parent/teacher meetings watching the tears role down the cheeks and the looks of concern, but in most cases I know we would not be having the meeting if the crocodile had not showed them how to cry.  Most people are too busy to “train” (2596) their children.  It shows. 

My wife has become like her mother.  She accuses me of being like my father.  We have two children.  It is a scary thought.  I hope and pray that my training has included a consistent life and not just a bunch of words. 

So?  If your children are young examine the example you are setting and ask where that will lead them.  If they are older you don’t have the influence but they will still see a change in your life and it could make a difference.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Yes, They Are That Bad

(Proverbs 21:10 KJV)  The soul of the wicked desireth evil: his neighbour findeth no favour in his eyes.

This is a topic that repeats itself in Proverbs.  It is a topic we don’t like to face.  It is a point of view that our culture repudiates.  There are “wicked” (7563) people.  They choose to do “evil” (7451b).  Wickedness is volitional.  It follows the “desires” (183). 

We tend to ignore this in our favorite politicians, entertainers and sports figures.  We still vote for them, buy their DVDs and wear their numbers.  We need to understand that when we do this we are supporting evil.  We are telling others that it is okay to support evil. 

I don’t expect to always make the right choices.  I am ignorant in some areas.  I am confused and wrong in others.  I do expect to support righteousness and reject all forms of evil.

So?  Open your eyes.  Make your choices.  It effects you, your family and your culture. 

Friday, September 20, 2013

Poor Excuses

(Proverbs 20:13 KJV)  Love not sleep, lest thou come to poverty; open thine eyes, and thou shalt be satisfied with bread.

This verse speaks to me.  My favorite day is Saturday because I don’t set an alarm.  I may still get up much earlier than I did as a teen, after all I am getting older, but I get up because I am awake and want to, not because an alarm has gone off and it calling me to work.  I am in constant danger of turning off the alarm, deciding to lay there for “just a moment,” and waking up much later.  

How does this cause us to “come to poverty” (become poor NASB) (3423)?  There are many avenues of poverty that are followed by sloth but that is not what hits me today.  Today I am thinking about how I have at times used sleep as a way of avoiding things.  If I am in bed, I don’t need to deal with it.  If my eyes are closed, maybe they will leave me alone.  If I am snoring, maybe they will go away.

The only problem is it doesn’t work.  Too often when I wake up the problem is still there.

So?  I need to not hide behind my pillow or my Lazy Boy chair.  Not only will it lead to financial problems but personal problems and poverty.  Join me in calling on God to help us face the difficult people and situations of the day. 

Thursday, September 19, 2013

All Wrath Is Not Equal

(Proverbs 19:12 KJV)  The king's wrath is as the roaring of a lion; but his favour is as dew upon the grass.

“Wrath” (2197) is something we usually try to avoid.  It doesn’t matter the source.  We may laugh at it when it is someone else’s infant.  We may shake in our boots when it is our own teenager.  We may worry when the TSA agent starts to lose it.  It is not a time of comfort. 

Why does this type of anger worry us?  The definition has the sense of anger out of control.  This is not a slow burn.  This is not an I’ll-get-even-with-you moment.  This is an “off with their heads” moment.  There a several words translated “wrath.”  This is the least frequent that I could find in a quick look and it usually does not refer to God’s anger.

God’s anger is quieter in the short term but has a more solid foundation.  A king might lose it because you didn’t compliment his new gloves.  God is concerned about eternal issues.

So?  Maybe it is time to start being concerned about how God feels about your priorities rather than how you friends, spouse or boss feel. 

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

First Impressions

(Proverbs 18:17 KJV)  He that is first in his own cause seemeth just; but his neighbour cometh and searcheth him.

First impressions can be deceptive.  We have all been there, on both sides.  I got it the other day.  I would guess I talk to the custodian that cleans my room at school more than I talk to anyone else.  I see him almost every day.  You start being polite and eventually get to know people.  I was startled the other day when he shared he had been told that I was narrow minded, opinionated and hard to get along with.  He was laughing and shaking his head when he said it.  He got beyond the first impression that was created by others. 

It is a spiritual necessity that we give people a chance to show who they are, not assume.  If you think about it you can come up with times your assumptions were wrong.  Judging on appearance would seem to be a sin.

So?  Give people a chance to prove their character.  It doesn’t take that long. 

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Duck Abomination

(Proverbs 17:15 KJV)  He that justifieth the wicked, and he that condemneth the just, even they both are abomination to the LORD.

There seems to be a play on words in the Hebrew.  The key nouns and verbs are derivatives of each other.  Take “justifies” (6663) and “just” (righteous NASB) (6662).  The similarities come through in the English of the KJV.  Notice that the numbers by the words are consecutive.  In this case it means that the root word is 6663 and the derived word is 6662.  We see the same relationship between “condemns” (7561), the root, and  “wicked” (7563), the derivation.

As Christians we should know God’s standards and apply them.  We should also look at our political and judicial leaders and expect them to follow the same standards.  One of my students was denying something that was obvious the other day.  I started to say, “If it walks like a duck...” and the student next to him finished the saying for me.  If an eighth grader can get it then you would think a judge or a senator could get it.

You would assume the difference would be clear to people who claim to follow Jesus.

So?  Recognize evil.  You have the measuring stick and the leadership of the Holy Spirit.  We have a world that needs salt and light.  Stand tall. 

Monday, September 16, 2013

Confession, Not Compromise

(Proverbs 16:14 KJV)  The wrath of a king is as messengers of death: but a wise man will pacify it.

Most of us are common folk.  We may be uncommon in our character or gifts, but we are certainly not social nobility, royalty or even gentry.  We are middle of the road.  We don’t have kings or emperors.  We do have presidents, IRS agents, TSA troopers and a plethora of government officials of all stripes.  And they are all waiting to get into our lives and mess with us.

It is good to find ways to “pacify” (appease NASB) (3722a).

I say that with my teeth gritted.  I don’t even like the concept.  It sounds like giving in to the tyranny of a dictator.  It sounds like surrender and compromise.  So take a look at the meaning of the word.

The most common translation of the word it “make atonement.”  It is a spiritual term that has to do with seeking forgiveness for the wrongs we have done.  It involves going to a higher authority to right something that we have no ability to right.  It means to find a way to stop justified wrath from coming our direction.

This does not mean to compromise on principle.  It means that when we are wrong it is better to be seeking mercy that to continue in defiance.  I am not sure how that works with the IRS but I know how that works with God.

So?  Have you drifted into some type of self centeredness or sin?  It is time to call on God for renewal, restoration and forgiveness.  You might as well be honest because God knows the score no matter what you put down. 

Sunday, September 15, 2013


(Proverbs 15:8 KJV)  The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the LORD: but the prayer of the upright is his delight.

Think of “sacrifice” (2077) as being an action you have in your daily life that involves responsible behavior that benefits others, perhaps getting up and going to work.  You believe that shows your love for your family.  On the other side think of “prayer” (8605) as being the act of communication.  So far, so good.

Let’s overlook the point of evil intentions and just look at those two actions.  One of the reasons that marriages fall apart is that one person, usually the husband, thinks that earning the living can take the place of communication.  He stops listening and talking.  The relationship dries up.  Sure they live in a nice house and eat well but there is no sense of family.  I am sure that women have ways of making this mistake too, perhaps by thinking a clean house and well prepared meals will substitute for helping the husband wind down after a difficult day.

Either way, honest, sincere communication is a must.

So?  Get the actions right but don’t overlook the times a prayer and communication.  This applies to God or your family. 

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Wise Reflections

(Proverbs 14:3 KJV)  In the mouth of the foolish is a rod of pride: but the lips of the wise shall preserve them.

Have you ever heard someone say, “He is his own worst enemy.”  It is often used about people who just cannot keep their “mouth” (6310) shut.  We can talk our way into problems more often than we can talk our way out.

Think of the words used to express this weakness.  Here we have “mouth” (6310) and “lips” (8193).  Other places we read about the tongue.  Voice is a common word.  All of these take what is in our minds and hearts and expresses it to the world.  If we are “foolish” (191) people soon notice.  If we are “wise” (2450), that will eventually come across also.  Jesus put it this way,
(Matthew 15:18 KJV)  But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man.
So?  Get your heart right.  Train your mind.  Discipline your habits.  People are listening and watching.  What do you reflect?

Friday, September 13, 2013

Dips Ahead

(Proverbs 13:14 KJV)  The law of the wise is a fountain of life, to depart from the snares of death.

Sometimes teaching seems an exercise in futility.  I will announce the page to turn to.  I will write it on the white board.  I will project it on the screen in letters a foot high.  I will announce it again.  The people at all points of the compass will be on the page and the student in the center will ask, “What page are we on?” 

Often we are this way with the “law” (teaching NASB) (8451) [torah] of God.  He has announced repeatedly what He expects.  He gives us examples of what it means to ignore His laws, written in ruined lives around us.  In our hearts there is a quiet witness of right and wrong.  And we act like we didn’t know. 

I travel down a certain stretch of road on occasion.  I know the road and there is a sign which says “Dip.”  Too often I ignore the sign and hit the low spot at a speed that punishes the suspension of my car and rattles my teeth.  Whose fault it is?

So?  God has given us plenty of warning.  What do you need to pay attention to today?  It will be different for you than me, but the signs are posted.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

The Net of Evil

(Proverbs 12:12 KJV)  The wicked desireth the net of evil men: but the root of the righteous yieldeth fruit.

I marvel at the liberties taken by translators.  Here is another place where the modern scholars are stretching.  The KJV has “net” for the “booty” (485b) of the NASB.  The literal meaning is “net.”  If you leave that, it is not much of a jump to the meaning of the verse.  Of course, “booty” works as a lesson but it is a different lesson.

“Booty” speaks of results.  “Net” speaks of methods.  This is a warning to us about using the methods of the evil.  The world, the culture, possibly your employer are putting pressure on you to compromise your ethical standards.  They want you to cut corners and make the sale.  They are concerned with winning, not how you win.  We cannot get caught in that “net.”

So?  Truth is truth.  Spin is a lie.  Honest is honest.  Exaggeration is a lie.  “Finders keepers, losers weepers” is not a philosophy that God’s children can live with. 

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Don’t Buy the Chips

(Proverbs 11:15 KJV)  He that is surety for a stranger shall smart for it: and he that hateth suretiship is sure.

In my campaign to keep off the weight I have lost, I find that I am much more tempted by salty foods than sweet foods.  That is because I like salt more than sugar.  Thus, dessert is not a big problem for me but snacking on chips is a killer.

I am never tempted to overeat on liver and onions.  Why?  Because I hate liver.  Just the smell makes me gag and want to vomit. 

The believer is safest who “hates” (8130) certain types of behavior.  Here the emphasis is on loaning money or guaranteeing the loans of others.  If you are like me you find it easier to avoid the things we hate than the things we enjoy.  For new Christians the temptations are different than for stolid believers but the temptations are still there.

So?  Know your weaknesses and plan on avoiding them.  I try not to buy potato chips.  If I have a bag, I eat the bag.  Solution:  don’t buy a bag.  I am sure you can find an application.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Life or Violence

(Proverbs 10:11 KJV)  The mouth of a righteous man is a well of life: but violence covereth the mouth of the wicked.

Notice the contrast between this verse and the last verse.  Here we have the “mouth” (6310) of the “righteous” (6662).  In the previous verse we have a “prating fool.”  In the previous verse we have someone who is ignoring evil.  Here we have someone who is speaking out for righteousness. 

Is it any surprise that the products of different behaviors are totally opposite.  On one side you have sorrow and violence.  On the side of righteousness you have a “well” (fountain NASB) (4726) of “life” (2425b).

So which result do you want from your life?  If you are reading this on purpose I know where you stand.  If you are on this site by accident, give it a thought.  Ask yourself, “How can I learn to speak with a righteous mouth?” 

Monday, September 9, 2013

Soul Hygiene

(Proverbs 9:15 KJV)  To call passengers who go right on their ways:

There is some confusion in the KJV because of the word “passenger” (5674/1870) (those who pass by NASB) (5674).  This is another archaic usage.  According to my computer’s dictionary the word “passenger” originally comes from a French word  meaning “passing, transitory.”

Evil thrives on the short term contact.  Think of it as a disease.  It doesn’t take long to get infected if someone is carrying the wrong, or right, bacteria or virus.  It only takes one non-washing of hands to transmit contamination.  We know how to wash our hands.  Do we know how to wash our minds and souls?

We can withdraw from contact.  We can avoid the presence of evil, up to a point.  Ultimately it is the work of the Holy Spirit to cleanse and restore.  Our part is confession and repentance.

So?  I visited a hospital this week.  I immediately washed my hands.  Make it a habit to ask the Holy Spirit to renew His presence and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Getting Buff

(Proverbs 8:32 KJV)  Now therefore hearken unto me, O ye children: for blessed are they that keep my ways.

Such a simple statement.  So often ignored.  Wisdom is rewarding but it is also demanding.  Too many people look at wisdom as a gym membership.  You see the promises.  You sign up.  You have them withdraw funds automatically each month.  They have branches all across the country.  You have a card to carry.  You are in.  Are you in good shape physically?

Notice the requirement to “keep” (8104) the ways of wisdom.  This is the application of what we know.  This is obedience.  This is what John was talking about.
(1 John 5:2 KJV)  By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments.
This is what James could see clearly.
(James 2:19 KJV)  Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.
We are saved by grace through faith but we are saved for obedience.

So?  Put feet to your faith.  Get to the spiritual gym and start building up the spiritual muscle.  Be a buff believer. 

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Empty Offerings

(Proverbs 7:14 KJV)  I have peace offerings with me; this day have I payed my vows.

Hypocrisy has always been a part of the church.  Sometimes it is a way of life.  God will have no mercy.  Think of Ananias and Sapphira in Acts 5.  Sometimes it is a momentary failure.  Think of Peter as Paul straightens him out in Galatians 2.  God forgives upon our repentance. 

Don’t get distracted by either type.  How many people are there in the church who are going through the motions and acting pious, yet they are really dragging others down.  Too many.  Make sure that you are not one of them.  Remember the warning of Jesus.
(Matthew 18:6 KJV)  But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea.
So?  Learn to ignore the hypocrites.  Make sure that you have not joined their ranks.  If you fall for it, repent.  This might be a place where public confession would have a place. 

Friday, September 6, 2013

Beauty Contest

(Proverbs 6:25 KJV)  Lust not after her beauty in thine heart; neither let her take thee with her eyelids.

“Beauty” (3308) can be a positive trait.  This is not about good looks being bad.  It is about a bad heart looking good.  It is about priorities and goals.

We are so easily swayed by outward appearances.  I am currently reading through Pride and Prejudice for the first time.  It is an act of love for the women of my life.  One of the things that comes through is the way the women of the novel judge every man on two things:  His looks and his money.  It is an awesome walk through shallow values.  I am not sure we are any better.

There is a saying that beauty is only skin deep but ugly goes all the way through.

So?  We have heard this so many times.  We need a constant reminder.  Stay alert.  Keep in mind the standards of upright living.  Apply them. 

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Voice Lessons

(Proverbs 5:13 KJV)  And have not obeyed the voice of my teachers, nor inclined mine ear to them that instructed me!

What “voice” (6963) catches your attention?  Have you ever been in a situation where a lot of commotion was going on everywhere and suddenly the woman next to you perks up and says, “Yes, dear.”  She has heard her child call.  You didn’t hear it, but she did.  Why?  She was tuned in to that voice, she was aware of the situation and she was listening.

We have also seen parents who don’t seem to be able to hear a thing.

I find of great interest that the KJV has “obeyed” where the NASB has “listened.”  The Hebrew word means both.  One requires the other.

So?  Which are you when it comes to the voice of God.  Are you tuned in?  Are you listening?  Do you want to hear?  You don’t need to answer me, answer yourself.  And God. 

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

The Insomnia of Evil

(Proverbs 4:16 KJV)  For they sleep not, except they have done mischief; and their sleep is taken away, unless they cause some to fall.

The first thirteen verses of this chapter are singing the praises of wisdom then in verse 14 it turns to warning against making the wrong choices.  Here Solomon points out to us that there are people who glory in their wrong choices.  There are people who rejoice in “evil” (7489a).

As much as we want to be positive, think the best of people and not judge, we are surrounded by people who thrive on evil.  They cover it up well.  They may not even see it themselves.  But they are tense with frustration if they have not done something to fight the cause of God.

So?  Live with caution.  Be aware.  And rejoice because you serve the righteous God. 

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Addition, Not Subtraction

(Proverbs 3:2 KJV)  For length of days, and long life, and peace, shall they add to thee.

How often have your read verses like this and looked around at your world.  What I see often seems to contradict this.  I see righteous people dying before their time, or so it seems to me.  I see the upright going through persecution.  In fact the Bible promises persecution to the faithful.  So how do we read this?

Just the way it was written.  It says God will “add” (3254).  The addition is based on us following the directions He has given us.  Look at how long you would live.  Obedience will increase it.  Look at the peace you might have known.  Obedience will increase it.  We don’t know what the base line was.  We don’t know what would have been. 

We do know that God watches and responds.

So?  Obey.  You can ask for a comparison in eternity.  Then you can find out about that car that would have taken you out if God had not restrained it.  Until then, rest in peace.  

Monday, September 2, 2013

Counting Spiritual Calories

(Proverbs 2:13 KJV)  Who leave the paths of uprightness, to walk in the ways of darkness;

To live in “uprightness” (3476) is a conscious choice.  In fact it is a series of conscious choices.  Even people who believe in election and eternal security would agree with this. 

Every choice you make is not of eternal significance.  Coke or Pepsi isn’t in the Bible but it might make a difference if one is making contributions to anti-Biblical agendas.  The color you wear might not make a difference unless you are choosing a rainbow pattern for Gay Pride Day. 

Small choices do make a long term difference.  If you have ever tried to lose weight you know how hard it is.  It isn’t the desire to lose but the multiple choices to make.  I was choosing between two flavors of Oreo.  They were 10 calories difference.  No big deal but if I made this choice every day for a year it would make a pound difference. 

So?  The spiritual calories can also add up.  Don’t start to compromise.  Walk in righteousness.  Walk upright.  Remember you want to fit in your robes at the wedding feast of the Lamb. 

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Casting Call

(Proverbs 1:14 KJV)  Cast in thy lot among us; let us all have one purse:

What does it mean to “cast” (throw NASB) (5307) in this context?  The word itself is very common.  The most common translation in both KJV and NASB is to “fall.”  It carries the idea of laying on the ground, often in submission.

What causes, groups and individuals do we willingly submit to?  Obviously we have some.  Each has a definite level of commitment and right to make demands.  If you are married you took vows.  If you have a job you probably signed some kind of paperwork.  If you have software you signed your life away and didn’t realize it. 

Too often we make commitments and don’t think about what it will take.  Have you every told someone you would pray for them?  Did you?  Have you ever promised to call or write and it never happened?  Did you bring children into the world and still keep up your “need” for leisure and recreation? 

Our first, and only, commitment is to almighty God.  That does not mean we don’t sign on for other things but He is the one who sets the context and conditions for those other commitments.

So?  Are you too busy with soccer to make it to church?  Do you need to work overtime to make your car payments?  Look at what you have committed to and the priorities you claim to have.