21 He that followeth after righteousness and mercy findeth life, righteousness, and honour.
Can’t Take It With You
Most of us have heard the phrase “You can’t take it with you when you die!” This is one of those euphemisms to allude to the fact that stuff does not matter, and the pursuit of things and money ultimately is pointless.
So many people struggle with getting enough or having enough, and their lives only have trouble or emptiness. Either they are always seeking more or greater, or they feel like they are failing to provide or failing at life.
This can even be true among Christians. We all only want to provide for ourselves and our families, to create a full life, so we seek out the means to do that.
Seek first …
However, God tells us the best and ultimately the only way to provide our needs.
But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
When we seek God’s holiness and more of Him in our lives, we will want the things God wants. In the process, God will take care of all our needs. This is not just making sure we have food to eat, water to drink, clothing, and a place to sleep.
In return for our faithfulness, God, in His faithfulness, gives us eternal life, righteousness, and a good name (honor). All of this comes through His Son, Jesus the Christ.
Heavenly Father, lead us by Your Holy Spirit to seek only You. Give us a thirst for righteousness and mercy, that we may not feel the need to worry and to bring glory to Your name!
Leave a comment | tags: Book of Proverbs, Contentment, Desire, honor, Life, Relationship, Righteousness, Seek, trust | posted in contentment, desire, Relationships, Trust the Lord
13 Whoso despiseth the word shall be destroyed: but he that feareth the commandment shall be rewarded.
Scorn and Respect
There is a danger in avoiding responsibility and not listening to a warning.
Are you aware that we are each responsible for all of our decisions? Are you aware that every choice has a consequence?
The NIV states this verse thusly: He who scorns instruction will pay for it, but he who respects command is rewarded.
If you are told not to do something, and you do it anyway, you will pay for it. If you are told to do something and you do not do it, you will pay for it. Whether it be having an upset stomach for eating too many sweets before dinner, losing a friend for breaking trust, going to jail or prison, or losing your life, being told not to do something and doing it will cost you. It may not happen immediately (Think about heartburn! It comes hours after you ate that chili-cheese hot dog with hot sauce, not immediately!)
However, if you show respect and heed what you have been told, you will be paid back for that trust. Whether that comes through enjoying a great meal, growing closer to a friend, staying out of trouble, or having great health and/or wealth, it will go well with you in life.
Sometimes the consequences come later … much later.
I like the King James Version for the implication that comes through.
God has sent us commands by which to live. We all failed at keeping them perfectly.
God sent His Son, Jesus of Nazareth, the Jewish Messiah and the Word of God, to keep those commands perfectly and then suffer the ultimate price for our failure. In doing so, the commands are summed up in two simple commands:
- Love others!
- Love God … by loving others and believing that Jesus died that you may live.
If we “scorn instruction” and “despiseth the word” of God, we have the promise that we will be destroyed. While there is debate on what this means, there is a guarantee that it is not pleasant nor desirable (Revelation 20:14-15).
However, if we respect and fear God’s commands, we will be rewarded with eternal life and peace with God (Galatians 6:8).
Gracious God, forgive us for despising Your word and commands. Give us the grace and power to overcome our sinful desires and follow You. Help us to love others for Your glory.
Leave a comment | tags: advice, Book of Proverbs, Desire, Fear, Fear of the Lord, God's Word, honor, Jesus, Jesus Christ, New International Version, paths, Respect, Reward, Word | posted in advice, Fear of the Lord, Reward, Word of the Lord
“The wise shall inherit glory: but shame shall be the promotion of fools.”
There are two ways to look at this proverb.
The first way is to understand that those who are wise have a good name, may have prosperity in some way, and will be respected. Fools will find that they lose everything, are disgraced, and have trust-issues.
However, since there is ample evidence that the opposite can be true, especially in this upside-down world, let us look at the other meaning of this verse.
As Psalms 14:1 and 53:1 both mention, the fool believes and says that there is no God. The only hope he has is in this world; after this life, all he can expect is destruction.
As for those who pursue Wisdom, there is the promise of eternal life with God. All we have to do is come to Christ with the faith of a child. Jesus said:
“Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God. Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein.” – Mark 10:14-5 KJV
We have to believe God is who He says He is; otherwise, we are doomed. However, when we live a life of wisdom by following Christ, we are promised glory.
“For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. … And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.” – Romans 8:14, 17 KJV
Gracious God, guide us in full wisdom that we may not only inherit the chance to live with You in glory, but that we may have a good name on this earth that You might be glorified through us.
4 Comments | tags: Book of Proverbs, Eternal destruction, Eternal life, Glory, honor, Shame, Wisdom | posted in Fools, Knowledge, Trust the Lord, Warnings, Wisdom