Category Archives: Wise

Freedom In Christ

Many in the USA celebrate freedom as a key part of the heritage of our July 4 national holiday. It commemorates independence for the USA from England and the policies of the government there for which the colonies were not represented. We can be reminded to value our freedom and not take it for granted. Fireworks and parties are commonplace. The birth of a free nation is celebrated. We do not celebrate this freedom by rebelling against the very nation that protects and provides our freedom. We do not declare that our freedom means we are no longer subject to any laws.

This day is a good opportunity for us to reflect deeper on one who is greater than us who also allows us the freedom to make our own choices. Our Creator made us in His image and allows us the freedom to follow Him or live in rebellion to Him, choosing instead to honor and follow the desires of our flesh and sin nature. All of us are inherently sinful. Babies at birth need not be taught to scream when they want something. Young children need to be taught to share, taking what they want comes naturally. We must learn to focus on the needs of others just as we must learn God’s ways in order to be set apart and different than the world.

Our Father, YHWH, provided us instructions to follow as any good father does for His children. Often the instructions are for the benefit of the children themselves, even if they don’t understand that fully. The instructions have been communicated through thousands of years and neatly compiled into the Bible we have so readily available to us today, so long as we choose to open it or click the link to it. We need only pray for enlightenment from the Spirit and read with a desire to learn and change our behaviors to follow God’s instructions. We should not read with a desire to justify all of our current actions and attitudes… that is redefining God in our image rather than redefining ourselves in His image.

We talk often in Christian community about freedom through Christ. It is amazing, but sadly many get confused by false teaching about this freedom. What are we set free from?

The short answer is that all too often people essentially say we are set free from all boundaries and can do anything and God will be pleased. This is false. This would be akin to saying we are free in the United States and then pretending that there are no laws or boundaries governing what is acceptable behavior and what will land you in prison. God has established guidelines and instructions for us to follow to help us, as a father does for his children. Are we to use our freedom to rebel against the one who gives it to us? No. Christ sets us free from the law of sin and death. He sets us free in that we can be reconciled to YHWH even when we do not live out his instructions perfectly to his standard. This means, simply that we can be forgiven for our sins, because Jesus already paid the price required by the law for our sins. We can be set free from condemnation and guilt, but we are to repent from the sinful ways and do things according to God’s instruction. We are to follow Christ.

Romans 8:1-4

1Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. 2For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death. 3For what the Law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did: sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh, 4so that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.

Many teach that we are set free from the law, from God’s instructions, but this is absurd. Jesus followed God’s instructions throughout His earthly ministry and so did His disciples. In fact, he was judged righteous in that he lived perfectly according to the law. He never taught against following God’s law, only against following the man made traditions of the Pharisees and Sadducees that were overburdening people with meaningless traditions and distracting from or even contradicting God’s law. We must ask ourselves… “Is Jesus our example to follow? or our excuse to live how we want rather than how God tells us to?”

Throughout the scriptures, God’s law is highlighted as good, as worthy of love, of setting us free from the lure of sin by showing us what is right. It is a light unto our path to guide us. I have included a few excerpts from Psalm 119, but you should click the link and read the whole Psalm. Many others have similar content. The law of God is to be obeyed. Jesus did not come to set us free from it.

Psalm 119 (excerpts – I encourage you to read 119 completely)

97O how I love Your law!
It is my meditation all the day.

98Your commandments make me wiser than my enemies,
For they are ever mine.

142Your righteousness is an everlasting righteousness,
And Your law is truth.

143Trouble and anguish have come upon me,
Yet Your commandments are my delight.

162I rejoice at Your word,
As one who finds great spoil.

163I hate and despise falsehood,
But I love Your law.

164Seven times a day I praise You,
Because of Your righteous ordinances.

165Those who love Your law have great peace,
And nothing causes them to stumble.

171Let my lips utter praise,
For You teach me Your statutes.

172Let my tongue sing of Your word,
For all Your commandments are righteousness.

Would it make sense that Jesus came to set us free from wisdom, delight, truth, and peace? Certainly not. This would be absurd. Jesus came to set us free from the law of sin and death. Yes, we all sin, and thus deserve death. However, Jesus sets us free from that guilt and condemnation and judgment because He already paid the price for us. What He calls for in return as part of this freedom is that we submit to God, repent of our sinful ways, and seek after God. True repentance transforms us to be different from the world and to become more and more like Jesus as we continue to grow in wisdom and maturity in our faith over the course of our lifetime.

Just as we see so obviously in the physical world, freedom brings responsibility and accountability for the choices we make. It is similar with our Father in heaven. Freedom comes with responsibility and accountability. There are spiritual consequences in our relationship with God and ultimate destination when we die from this life and go into eternity to heaven or hell. There are also physical and emotional impacts in our lives today based on how well we follow the instructions He has provided. After all, the loving Father and Creator knows how best to guide His creations. He gives us the answers, but we need to listen and obey… even when we don’t understand fully.

Learn more:

—-

Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

When The Righteous Increase, The People Rejoice

Let us pray for an increase of righteous, godly people in our churches, communities, government, states, nation, and across the world. Let us seek righteousness in God’s word and through relationship with Him. Do not pursue the deceptions of worldly teaching on what is righteous and what is wicked for Satan revels in deception as those that claim God all the while rebel against His ways.

Proverbs 29

Warnings and Instructions

1A man who hardens his neck after much reproof
Will suddenly be broken beyond remedy.

2When the righteous increase, the people rejoice,
But when a wicked man rules, people groan.

3A man who loves wisdom makes his father glad,
But he who keeps company with harlots wastes his wealth.

4The king gives stability to the land by justice,
But a man who takes bribes overthrows it.

5A man who flatters his neighbor
Is spreading a net for his steps.

6By transgression an evil man is ensnared,
But the righteous sings and rejoices.

7The righteous is concerned for the rights of the poor,
The wicked does not understand such concern.

8Scorners set a city aflame,
But wise men turn away anger.

9When a wise man has a controversy with a foolish man,
The foolish man either rages or laughs, and there is no rest.

10Men of bloodshed hate the blameless,
But the upright are concerned for his life.

11A fool always loses his temper,
But a wise man holds it back.

12If a ruler pays attention to falsehood,
All his ministers become wicked.

13The poor man and the oppressor have this in common:
The LORD gives light to the eyes of both.

14If a king judges the poor with truth,
His throne will be established forever.

15The rod and reproof give wisdom,
But a child who gets his own way brings shame to his mother.

16When the wicked increase, transgression increases;
But the righteous will see their fall.

17Correct your son, and he will give you comfort;
He will also delight your soul.

18Where there is no vision, the people are unrestrained,
But happy is he who keeps the law.

19A slave will not be instructed by words alone;
For though he understands, there will be no response.

20Do you see a man who is hasty in his words?
There is more hope for a fool than for him.

21He who pampers his slave from childhood
Will in the end find him to be a son.

22An angry man stirs up strife,
And a hot-tempered man abounds in transgression.

23A man’s pride will bring him low,
But a humble spirit will obtain honor.

24He who is a partner with a thief hates his own life;
He hears the oath but tells nothing.

25The fear of man brings a snare,
But he who trusts in the LORD will be exalted.

26Many seek the ruler’s favor,
But justice for man comes from the LORD.

27An unjust man is abominable to the righteous,
And he who is upright in the way is abominable to the wicked.

—-

Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

The Role We Should Fill Often Changes As We Age

It was brave of David and good leadership to go into battle with his men. However, the men recognized that perhaps the time for him to be physically in battle had passed and he should remain more protected. It certainly shows a bit of aging on David’s part, as he was a mighty warrior. We all slow down a bit as we age.

It is good that he had loyal group of men supporting him to protect and help him as well as advise him to stay more protected. It is good that he listened to them. We too should look to consider wise advice from those around us we trust. Let us not be too proud to let others help us and for us to fill a different role than perhaps we did when we were younger. Clearly we see the men see David’s value and want to preserve it. To say David should take a different role, less in the direct battle, is not to say his value has diminished. Quite the opposite. His value was still very clear.

2 Samuel 21:15-21

  15Now when the Philistines were at war again with Israel, David went down and his servants with him; and as they fought against the Philistines, David became weary. 16Then Ishbi-benob, who was among the descendants of the giant, the weight of whose spear was three hundred shekels of bronze in weight, was girded with a new sword, and he intended to kill David. 17But Abishai the son of Zeruiah helped him, and struck the Philistine and killed him. Then the men of David swore to him, saying, “You shall not go out again with us to battle, so that you do not extinguish the lamp of Israel.”

      18Now it came about after this that there was war again with the Philistines at Gob; then Sibbecai the Hushathite struck down Saph, who was among the descendants of the giant. 19There was war with the Philistines again at Gob, and Elhanan the son of Jaare-oregim the Bethlehemite killed Goliath the Gittite, the shaft of whose spear was like a weaver’s beam. 20There was war at Gath again, where there was a man of great stature who had six fingers on each hand and six toes on each foot, twenty-four in number; and he also had been born to the giant. 21When he defied Israel, Jonathan the son of Shimei, David’s brother, struck him down. 22These four were born to the giant in Gath, and they fell by the hand of David and by the hand of his servants.

—-

Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Those Who Seek the LORD Understand All Things

Those who seek the Lord understand all things. Take time to read, consider and pray about each verse in today’s chapter of Proverbs. No matter how far I am in my walk with the Lord and how many times I read, I always find something, or many things that apply in my life and can serve as a guide to light my way… if I am humble enough to admit I need guidance and that Jehovah provides it and if I am willing to study and apply it in my life.

Proverbs 28

Warnings and Instructions

1The wicked flee when no one is pursuing,
But the righteous are bold as a lion.

2By the transgression of a land many are its princes,
But by a man of understanding and knowledge, so it endures.

3A poor man who oppresses the lowly
Is like a driving rain which leaves no food.

4Those who forsake the law praise the wicked,
But those who keep the law strive with them.

5Evil men do not understand justice,
But those who seek the LORD understand all things.

6Better is the poor who walks in his integrity
Than he who is crooked though he be rich.

7He who keeps the law is a discerning son,
But he who is a companion of gluttons humiliates his father.

8He who increases his wealth by interest and usury
Gathers it for him who is gracious to the poor.

9He who turns away his ear from listening to the law,
Even his prayer is an abomination.

10He who leads the upright astray in an evil way
Will himself fall into his own pit,
But the blameless will inherit good.

11The rich man is wise in his own eyes,
But the poor who has understanding sees through him.

12When the righteous triumph, there is great glory,
But when the wicked rise, men hide themselves.

13He who conceals his transgressions will not prosper,
But he who confesses and forsakes them will find compassion.

14How blessed is the man who fears always,
But he who hardens his heart will fall into calamity.

15Like a roaring lion and a rushing bear
Is a wicked ruler over a poor people.

16A leader who is a great oppressor lacks understanding,
But he who hates unjust gain will prolong his days.

17A man who is laden with the guilt of human blood
Will be a fugitive until death; let no one support him.

18He who walks blamelessly will be delivered,
But he who is crooked will fall all at once.

19He who tills his land will have plenty of food,
But he who follows empty pursuits will have poverty in plenty.

20A faithful man will abound with blessings,
But he who makes haste to be rich will not go unpunished.

21To show partiality is not good,
Because for a piece of bread a man will transgress.

22A man with an evil eye hastens after wealth
And does not know that want will come upon him.

23He who rebukes a man will afterward find more favor
Than he who flatters with the tongue.

24He who robs his father or his mother
And says, “It is not a transgression,”
Is the companion of a man who destroys.

25An arrogant man stirs up strife,
But he who trusts in the LORD will prosper.

26He who trusts in his own heart is a fool,
But he who walks wisely will be delivered.

27He who gives to the poor will never want,
But he who shuts his eyes will have many curses.

28When the wicked rise, men hide themselves;
But when they perish, the righteous increase.

—-

Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

He Who Cares for His Master Will Be Honored

Proverbs contains much wisdom. It still applies today. People have not changed and neither has YHWH. Read it, digest it, accept that it applies to you and you will grow wiser. Take care not to dismiss it because some of the examples are from a different time and culture. Prayerfully reflect on each one and how it may apply today to you and your family. Ask YHWH to enlighten your mind as you read scripture.

In all things, let us care for our heavenly Father and Creator. Let us not seek honor for ourselves but through serving Him. Let us partake of His wisdom and grow wiser.

Proverbs 27

Warnings and Instructions

1Do not boast about tomorrow,
For you do not know what a day may bring forth.

2Let another praise you, and not your own mouth;
A stranger, and not your own lips.

3A stone is heavy and the sand weighty,
But the provocation of a fool is heavier than both of them.

4Wrath is fierce and anger is a flood,
But who can stand before jealousy?

5Better is open rebuke
Than love that is concealed.

6Faithful are the wounds of a friend,
But deceitful are the kisses of an enemy.

7A sated man loathes honey,
But to a famished man any bitter thing is sweet.

8Like a bird that wanders from her nest,
So is a man who wanders from his home.

9Oil and perfume make the heart glad,
So a man’s counsel is sweet to his friend.

10Do not forsake your own friend or your father’s friend,
And do not go to your brother’s house in the day of your calamity;
Better is a neighbor who is near than a brother far away.

11Be wise, my son, and make my heart glad,
That I may reply to him who reproaches me.

12A prudent man sees evil and hides himself,
The naive proceed and pay the penalty.

13Take his garment when he becomes surety for a stranger;
And for an adulterous woman hold him in pledge.

14He who blesses his friend with a loud voice early in the morning,
It will be reckoned a curse to him.

15A constant dripping on a day of steady rain
And a contentious woman are alike;

16He who would restrain her restrains the wind,
And grasps oil with his right hand.

17Iron sharpens iron,
So one man sharpens another.

18He who tends the fig tree will eat its fruit,
And he who cares for his master will be honored.

19As in water face reflects face,
So the heart of man reflects man.

20Sheol and Abaddon are never satisfied,
Nor are the eyes of man ever satisfied.

21The crucible is for silver and the furnace for gold,
And each is tested by the praise accorded him.

22Though you pound a fool in a mortar with a pestle along with crushed grain,
Yet his foolishness will not depart from him.

23Know well the condition of your flocks,
And pay attention to your herds;

24For riches are not forever,
Nor does a crown endure to all generations.

25When the grass disappears, the new growth is seen,
And the herbs of the mountains are gathered in,

26The lambs will be for your clothing,
And the goats will bring the price of a field,

27And there will be goats’ milk enough for your food,
For the food of your household,
And sustenance for your maidens.

—-

Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Do Not Answer A Fool According To His Folly

Let us not get swept away in the “logic” and “wisdom” of the world lest we answer fools according to their folly, and in so doing become also like them. We are better off seeking to understand and apply the wisdom of our Creator as shared in the Bible.

Proverbs 26

Similitudes, Instructions

1Like snow in summer and like rain in harvest,
So honor is not fitting for a fool.

2Like a sparrow in its flitting, like a swallow in its flying,
So a curse without cause does not alight.

3A whip is for the horse, a bridle for the donkey,
And a rod for the back of fools.

4Do not answer a fool according to his folly,
Or you will also be like him.

5Answer a fool as his folly deserves,
That he not be wise in his own eyes.

6He cuts off his own feet and drinks violence
Who sends a message by the hand of a fool.

7Like the legs which are useless to the lame,
So is a proverb in the mouth of fools.

8Like one who binds a stone in a sling,
So is he who gives honor to a fool.

9Like a thorn which falls into the hand of a drunkard,
So is a proverb in the mouth of fools.

10Like an archer who wounds everyone,
So is he who hires a fool or who hires those who pass by.

11Like a dog that returns to its vomit
Is a fool who repeats his folly.

12Do you see a man wise in his own eyes?
There is more hope for a fool than for him.

13The sluggard says, “There is a lion in the road!
A lion is in the open square!”

14As the door turns on its hinges,
So does the sluggard on his bed.

15The sluggard buries his hand in the dish;
He is weary of bringing it to his mouth again.

16The sluggard is wiser in his own eyes
Than seven men who can give a discreet answer.

17Like one who takes a dog by the ears
Is he who passes by and meddles with strife not belonging to him.

18Like a madman who throws
Firebrands, arrows and death,

19So is the man who deceives his neighbor,
And says, “Was I not joking?”

20For lack of wood the fire goes out,
And where there is no whisperer, contention quiets down.

21Like charcoal to hot embers and wood to fire,
So is a contentious man to kindle strife.

22The words of a whisperer are like dainty morsels,
And they go down into the innermost parts of the body.

23Like an earthen vessel overlaid with silver dross
Are burning lips and a wicked heart.

24He who hates disguises it with his lips,
But he lays up deceit in his heart.

25When he speaks graciously, do not believe him,
For there are seven abominations in his heart.

26Though his hatred covers itself with guile,
His wickedness will be revealed before the assembly.

27He who digs a pit will fall into it,
And he who rolls a stone, it will come back on him.

28A lying tongue hates those it crushes,
And a flattering mouth works ruin.

—-

Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Like An Ornament Of Fine Gold, So Is A Wise Reprover To A Listening Ear

Ask the Spirit to enlighten the meaning and relevance of scripture to you each time you sit to read and reflect on scripture. He is counselor and guide. All scripture is still relevant and worthy for use in teaching and rebuking.

Proverbs 25

Similitudes, Instructions

1These also are proverbs of Solomon which the men of Hezekiah, king of Judah, transcribed.

2It is the glory of God to conceal a matter,
But the glory of kings is to search out a matter.

3As the heavens for height and the earth for depth,
So the heart of kings is unsearchable.

4Take away the dross from the silver,
And there comes out a vessel for the smith;

5Take away the wicked before the king,
And his throne will be established in righteousness.

6Do not claim honor in the presence of the king,
And do not stand in the place of great men;

7For it is better that it be said to you, “Come up here,”
Than for you to be placed lower in the presence of the prince,
Whom your eyes have seen.

8Do not go out hastily to argue your case;
Otherwise, what will you do in the end,
When your neighbor humiliates you?

9Argue your case with your neighbor,
And do not reveal the secret of another,

10Or he who hears it will reproach you,
And the evil report about you will not pass away.

11Like apples of gold in settings of silver
Is a word spoken in right circumstances.

12Like an earring of gold and an ornament of fine gold
Is a wise reprover to a listening ear.

13Like the cold of snow in the time of harvest
Is a faithful messenger to those who send him,
For he refreshes the soul of his masters.

14Like clouds and wind without rain
Is a man who boasts of his gifts falsely.

15By forbearance a ruler may be persuaded,
And a soft tongue breaks the bone.

16Have you found honey? Eat only what you need,
That you not have it in excess and vomit it.

17Let your foot rarely be in your neighbor’s house,
Or he will become weary of you and hate you.

18Like a club and a sword and a sharp arrow
Is a man who bears false witness against his neighbor.

19Like a bad tooth and an unsteady foot
Is confidence in a faithless man in time of trouble.

20Like one who takes off a garment on a cold day, or like vinegar on soda,
Is he who sings songs to a troubled heart.

21If your enemy is hungry, give him food to eat;
And if he is thirsty, give him water to drink;

22For you will heap burning coals on his head,
And the LORD will reward you.

23The north wind brings forth rain,
And a backbiting tongue, an angry countenance.

24It is better to live in a corner of the roof
Than in a house shared with a contentious woman.

25Like cold water to a weary soul,
So is good news from a distant land.

26Like a trampled spring and a polluted well
Is a righteous man who gives way before the wicked.

27It is not good to eat much honey,
Nor is it glory to search out one’s own glory.

28Like a city that is broken into and without walls
Is a man who has no control over his spirit.

—-

Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Ever Heard Proverbs Compared To Nesting Dolls?

Have you ever seen the set of wooden dolls which fit one inside another inside another inside another… and so on. There may be ten stacked inside one another. They are called matryoshka nesting dolls.  They do not look like much when they are stacked inside one another, but watch how much is there as you unpack it and spread them out. Proverbs strikes me much the same way. If we are not careful, we may just read quickly over a chapter of Proverbs, saying… “that is nice” or “that is clever” and never really internalize the wisdom it contains. We should take our time to prayerfully consider the warnings and wisdom contained in each chapter. Carefully unpack each verse and consider it. Do not hurry. Appreciate each one for the wisdom it contains and take a few moments to consider how it applies to your life.

Proverbs 24

Precepts and Warnings

         1Do not be envious of evil men,
Nor desire to be with them;

2For their minds devise violence,
And their lips talk of trouble.

3By wisdom a house is built,
And by understanding it is established;

4And by knowledge the rooms are filled
With all precious and pleasant riches.

5A wise man is strong,
And a man of knowledge increases power.

6For by wise guidance you will wage war,
And in abundance of counselors there is victory.

7Wisdom is too exalted for a fool,
He does not open his mouth in the gate.

8One who plans to do evil,
Men will call a schemer.

9The devising of folly is sin,
And the scoffer is an abomination to men.

10If you are slack in the day of distress,
Your strength is limited.

11Deliver those who are being taken away to death,
And those who are staggering to slaughter, Oh hold them back.

12If you say, “See, we did not know this,”
Does He not consider it who weighs the hearts?
And does He not know it who keeps your soul?
And will He not render to man according to his work?

13My son, eat honey, for it is good,
Yes, the honey from the comb is sweet to your taste;

14Know that wisdom is thus for your soul;
If you find it, then there will be a future,
And your hope will not be cut off.

15Do not lie in wait, O wicked man, against the dwelling of the righteous;
Do not destroy his resting place;

16For a righteous man falls seven times, and rises again,
But the wicked stumble in time of calamity.

17Do not rejoice when your enemy falls,
And do not let your heart be glad when he stumbles;

18Or the LORD will see it and be displeased,
And turn His anger away from him.

19Do not fret because of evildoers
Or be envious of the wicked;

20For there will be no future for the evil man;
The lamp of the wicked will be put out.

21My son, fear the LORD and the king;
Do not associate with those who are given to change,

22For their calamity will rise suddenly,
And who knows the ruin that comes from both of them?

23These also are sayings of the wise.
To show partiality in judgment is not good.

24He who says to the wicked, “You are righteous,”
Peoples will curse him, nations will abhor him;

25But to those who rebuke the wicked will be delight,
And a good blessing will come upon them.

26He kisses the lips
Who gives a right answer.

27Prepare your work outside
And make it ready for yourself in the field;
Afterwards, then, build your house.

28Do not be a witness against your neighbor without cause,
And do not deceive with your lips.

29Do not say, “Thus I shall do to him as he has done to me;
I will render to the man according to his work.”

30I passed by the field of the sluggard
And by the vineyard of the man lacking sense,

31And behold, it was completely overgrown with thistles;
Its surface was covered with nettles,
And its stone wall was broken down.

32When I saw, I reflected upon it;
I looked, and received instruction.

33“A little sleep, a little slumber,
A little folding of the hands to rest,”

34Then your poverty will come as a robber
And your want like an armed man.

—-

Have you submitted your life to Jesus Christ? Are you living today filled with the peace and joy of truly knowing and following Jesus Christ? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Buy Truth and Do Not Sell It. Get Understanding.

Not everyone we meet is to be taken at face value for everything they may tell you. Some may invite you to eat from their table, but silently curse you if they think you are being greedy about how much you eat or ungrateful about not thanking them enough. We should thoughtfully consider our behavior and how it matches with what YHWH tells us to do (and not to do) and also how our actions may affect others around us. Our Father has much to tell us about life and conduct in the Bible.

Proverbs 23

On Life and Conduct

1When you sit down to dine with a ruler,
Consider carefully what is before you,

2And put a knife to your throat
If you are a man of great appetite.

3Do not desire his delicacies,
For it is deceptive food.

4Do not weary yourself to gain wealth,
Cease from your consideration of it.

5When you set your eyes on it, it is gone.
For wealth certainly makes itself wings
Like an eagle that flies toward the heavens.

6Do not eat the bread of a selfish man,
Or desire his delicacies;

7For as he thinks within himself, so he is.
He says to you, “Eat and drink!”
But his heart is not with you.

8You will vomit up the morsel you have eaten,
And waste your compliments.

9Do not speak in the hearing of a fool,
For he will despise the wisdom of your words.

10Do not move the ancient boundary
Or go into the fields of the fatherless,

11For their Redeemer is strong;
He will plead their case against you.

12Apply your heart to discipline
And your ears to words of knowledge.

13Do not hold back discipline from the child,
Although you strike him with the rod, he will not die.

14You shall strike him with the rod
And rescue his soul from Sheol.

15My son, if your heart is wise,
My own heart also will be glad;

16And my inmost being will rejoice
When your lips speak what is right.

17Do not let your heart envy sinners,
But live in the fear of the LORD always.

18Surely there is a future,
And your hope will not be cut off.

19Listen, my son, and be wise,
And direct your heart in the way.

20Do not be with heavy drinkers of wine,
Or with gluttonous eaters of meat;

21For the heavy drinker and the glutton will come to poverty,
And drowsiness will clothe one with rags.

22Listen to your father who begot you,
And do not despise your mother when she is old.

23Buy truth, and do not sell it,
Get wisdom and instruction and understanding.

24The father of the righteous will greatly rejoice,
And he who sires a wise son will be glad in him.

25Let your father and your mother be glad,
And let her rejoice who gave birth to you.

26Give me your heart, my son,
And let your eyes delight in my ways.

27For a harlot is a deep pit
And an adulterous woman is a narrow well.

28Surely she lurks as a robber,
And increases the faithless among men.

29Who has woe? Who has sorrow?
Who has contentions? Who has complaining?
Who has wounds without cause?
Who has redness of eyes?

30Those who linger long over wine,
Those who go to taste mixed wine.

31Do not look on the wine when it is red,
When it sparkles in the cup,
When it goes down smoothly;

32At the last it bites like a serpent
And stings like a viper.

33Your eyes will see strange things
And your mind will utter perverse things.

34And you will be like one who lies down in the middle of the sea,
Or like one who lies down on the top of a mast.

35“They struck me, but I did not become ill;
They beat me, but I did not know it.
When shall I awake?
I will seek another drink.”

—-

Have you submitted your life to Jesus Christ? Are you living today filled with the peace and joy of truly knowing and following Jesus Christ? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

The Reward of Humility And The Fear Of The Lord

The reward of humility and the fear of the Lord are riches, honor, and life. Pause and ask the Spirit to guide you and speak to you as you read Proverbs today. May He open our eyes to the truth of God’s word and how it applies in our lives. May we be humble enough to identify and admit where we need to make changes.

Proverbs 22

On Life and Conduct

1A good name is to be more desired than great wealth,
Favor is better than silver and gold.

2The rich and the poor have a common bond,
The LORD is the maker of them all.

3The prudent sees the evil and hides himself,
But the naive go on, and are punished for it.

4The reward of humility and the fear of the LORD
Are riches, honor and life.

5Thorns and snares are in the way of the perverse;
He who guards himself will be far from them.

6Train up a child in the way he should go,
Even when he is old he will not depart from it.

7The rich rules over the poor,
And the borrower becomes the lender’s slave.

8He who sows iniquity will reap vanity,
And the rod of his fury will perish.

9He who is generous will be blessed,
For he gives some of his food to the poor.

10Drive out the scoffer, and contention will go out,
Even strife and dishonor will cease.

11He who loves purity of heart
And whose speech is gracious, the king is his friend.

12The eyes of the LORD preserve knowledge,
But He overthrows the words of the treacherous man.

13The sluggard says, “There is a lion outside;
I will be killed in the streets!”

14The mouth of an adulteress is a deep pit;
He who is cursed of the LORD will fall into it.

15Foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child;
The rod of discipline will remove it far from him.

16He who oppresses the poor to make more for himself
Or who gives to the rich, will only come to poverty.

17Incline your ear and hear the words of the wise,
And apply your mind to my knowledge;

18For it will be pleasant if you keep them within you,
That they may be ready on your lips.

19So that your trust may be in the LORD,
I have taught you today, even you.

20Have I not written to you excellent things
Of counsels and knowledge,

21To make you know the certainty of the words of truth
That you may correctly answer him who sent you?

22Do not rob the poor because he is poor,
Or crush the afflicted at the gate;

23For the LORD will plead their case
And take the life of those who rob them.

24Do not associate with a man given to anger;
Or go with a hot-tempered man,

25Or you will learn his ways
And find a snare for yourself.

26Do not be among those who give pledges,
Among those who become guarantors for debts.

27If you have nothing with which to pay,
Why should he take your bed from under you?

28Do not move the ancient boundary
Which your fathers have set.

29Do you see a man skilled in his work?
He will stand before kings;
He will not stand before obscure men.

There is much wisdom, much treasure, in Proverbs. Read it slowly and carefully. Reflect on how each part applies in your life and the lives of others around you. Pray for insight and help to make necessary changes in your life to come more in line with God’s wisdom and advice rather than “how you have always done things” or “how the world does things” or what is “normal”.

Only God is truly wise, so let us listen and obey.

—-

Have you submitted your life to Jesus Christ? Are you living today filled with the peace and joy of truly knowing and following Jesus Christ? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.