Pathways Through Proverbs
August 11, 2008
Today's Reading - Proverbs 11
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Following Scripture Verses
- A false balance is abomination to the LORD: but a just weight is his delight.
- When pride cometh, then cometh shame: but with the lowly is wisdom.
- The integrity of the upright shall guide them: but the perverseness of transgressors shall destroy them.
- Riches profit not in the day of wrath: but righteousness delivereth from death.
- The righteousness of the perfect shall direct his way: but the wicked shall fall by his own wickedness.
- The righteousness of the upright shall deliver them: but transgressors shall be taken in their own naughtiness.
- When a wicked man dieth, his expectation shall perish: and the hope of unjust men perisheth.
- The righteous is delivered out of trouble, and the wicked cometh in his stead.
- An hypocrite with his mouth destroyeth his neighbour: but through knowledge shall the just be delivered.
- When it goeth well with the righteous, the city rejoiceth: and when the wicked perish, there is shouting.
- By the blessing of the upright the city is exalted: but it is overthrown by the mouth of the wicked.
- He that is void of wisdom despiseth his neighbour: but a man of understanding holdeth his peace.
- A talebearer revealeth secrets: but he that is of a faithful spirit concealeth the matter.
- Where no counsel is, the people fall: but in the multitude of counsellors there is safety.
- He that is surety for a stranger shall smart for it: and he that hateth suretiship is sure.
- A gracious woman retaineth honour: and strong men retain riches.
- The merciful man doeth good to his own soul: but he that is cruel troubleth his own flesh.
- The wicked worketh a deceitful work: but to him that soweth righteousness shall be a sure reward.
- As righteousness tendeth to life: so he that pursueth evil pursueth it to his own death.
- They that are of a froward heart are abomination to the LORD: but such as are upright in their way are his delight.
- Though hand join in hand, the wicked shall not be unpunished: but the seed of the righteous shall be delivered.
- As a jewel of gold in a swine's snout, so is a fair woman which is without discretion.
- The desire of the righteous is only good: but the expectation of the wicked is wrath.
- There is that scattereth, and yet increaseth; and there is that withholdeth more than is meet, but it tendeth to poverty.
- The liberal soul shall be made fat: and he that watereth shall be watered also himself.
- He that withholdeth corn, the people shall curse him: but blessing shall be upon the head of him that selleth it.
- He that diligently seeketh good procureth favour: but he that seeketh mischief, it shall come unto him.
- He that trusteth in his riches shall fall: but the righteous shall flourish as a branch.
- He that troubleth his own house shall inherit the wind: and the fool shall be servant to the wise of heart.
- The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life; and he that winneth souls is wise.
- Behold, the righteous shall be recompensed in the earth: much more the wicked and the sinner.
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Here is another paradox from the Scripture. Solomon writes that a man who is merciful does good to himself and a man who is cruel to others actually harms himself.
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By definition, a man who is merciful is someone who does not hurt others even though they may deserve it. Their actions may warrant punishment or revenge, but the merciful individual chooses to be nice to them anyway. He does good to them, but ultimately he is doing good to himself. This occurs in several ways. First of all, he is following the example of Jesus Christ by not reviling those who reviled Him (I Peter 2:23). This pleases the Lord and brings His blessings. Second, when you lose your temper or treat someone else in a nasty way, even though they may have it coming, it still leaves an empty feeling inside the believer, for he knows that he has acted improperly. To have done right will bring pleasure to the soul because the Spirit has been followed, and conforming to His leading always brings peace and joy. Finally, the law of sowing and reaping promises that when the time comes, others will be merciful to him.
In contrast, the cruel man is one who enjoys hurting other people. Because it pleases him so, he goes out of his way to harm others, including those who have never done anything improper towards him. He thinks that he is troubling others, but in fact he is troubling himself. The same two principles mentioned above apply to this man. The judgment of God is going to fall on him because he is not following the commandments of the Bible. If he is saved, he will be quenching the Spirit, and thus there can be no real joy or peace in his soul. In addition, the law of sowing and reaping promises that his cruel actions towards others will result in others being equally cruel to him.
Be merciful. You'll be glad that you were.
Pastor Mark J Montgomery