Pathways Through Proverbs
April 19, 2008
Today's Reading - Proverbs 19
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Following Scripture Verses
- Better is the poor that walketh in his integrity, than he that is perverse in his lips, and is a fool.
- Also, that the soul be without knowledge, it is not good; and he that hasteth with his feet sinneth.
- The foolishness of man perverteth his way: and his heart fretteth against the LORD.
- Wealth maketh many friends; but the poor is separated from his neighbour.
- A false witness shall not be unpunished, and he that speaketh lies shall not escape.
- Many will intreat the favour of the prince: and every man is a friend to him that giveth gifts.
- All the brethren of the poor do hate him: how much more do his friends go far from him? he pursueth them with words, yet they are wanting to him.
- He that getteth wisdom loveth his own soul: he that keepeth understanding shall find good.
- A false witness shall not be unpunished, and he that speaketh lies shall perish.
- Delight is not seemly for a fool; much less for a servant to have rule over princes.
- The discretion of a man deferreth his anger; and it is his glory to pass over a transgression.
- The king's wrath is as the roaring of a lion; but his favour is as dew upon the grass.
- A foolish son is the calamity of his father: and the contentions of a wife are a continual dropping.
- House and riches are the inheritance of fathers: and a prudent wife is from the LORD.
- Slothfulness casteth into a deep sleep; and an idle soul shall suffer hunger.
- He that keepeth the commandment keepeth his own soul; but he that despiseth his ways shall die.
- He that hath pity upon the poor lendeth unto the LORD; and that which he hath given will he pay him again.
- Chasten thy son while there is hope, and let not thy soul spare for his crying.
- A man of great wrath shall suffer punishment: for if thou deliver him, yet thou must do it again.
- Hear counsel, and receive instruction, that thou mayest be wise in thy latter end.
- There are many devices in a man's heart; nevertheless the counsel of the LORD, that shall stand.
- The desire of a man is his kindness: and a poor man is better than a liar.
- The fear of the LORD tendeth to life: and he that hath it shall abide satisfied; he shall not be visited with evil.
- A slothful man hideth his hand in his bosom, and will not so much as bring it to his mouth again.
- Smite a scorner, and the simple will beware: and reprove one that hath understanding, and he will understand knowledge.
- He that wasteth his father, and chaseth away his mother, is a son that causeth shame, and bringeth reproach.
- Cease, my son, to hear the instruction that causeth to err from the words of knowledge.
- An ungodly witness scorneth judgment: and the mouth of the wicked devoureth iniquity.
- Judgments are prepared for scorners, and stripes for the back of fools.
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It is very difficult to be poor. No one desires to be impoverished, and most of us work very hard to try to make a better life for ourselves and for our children. Even this chapter of the Bible reveals the heartaches of poverty, for verse 4 tells us that the poor man is separated from his friends, and verse 7 states that the brethren of a poor man hate him.
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However, there are many things that are worse than being poor. Three of them are found in today's verse. Lack of integrity, perverseness in speech, and foolishness are all worse than poverty. Note especially what Solomon says about poverty and integrity, for he teaches truths that our society today needs to understand. First, poverty and integrity are not synonymous. I have heard many politicians, community leaders, and even theologians attempt to claim that their is a dignity that comes with being poor. That is not correct. Both rich and poor must choose to walk in integrity. Second, we need to understand that poverty is not a legitimate excuse for failing to live an upright life. We hear today that the underachieving need to be excused because they grew up poor. All the behavioral, moral, educational, and criminal problems of society are blamed upon poverty. This is also untrue, for Solomon clearly says that it is possible for poor people to not only have integrity, but to walk with that integrity clearly visible.
It is time to stop blaming others for our sin problems. It is time to stop using our financial condition as an excuse to rebel against the teachings of the Word of God. It is tough to be poor, but it will be much tougher to stand before God and be forced to give an account of how we squandered our opportunities to live for him. Take what God has given you, and use it for Him.
Pastor Mark J Montgomery