Pathways Through Proverbs
September 24, 2008
Today's Reading - Proverbs 24
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Following Scripture Verses
- Be not thou envious against evil men, neither desire to be with them.
- For their heart studieth destruction, and their lips talk of mischief.
- Through wisdom is an house builded; and by understanding it is established:
- And by knowledge shall the chambers be filled with all precious and pleasant riches.
- A wise man is strong; yea, a man of knowledge increaseth strength.
- For by wise counsel thou shalt make thy war: and in multitude of counsellors there is safety.
- Wisdom is too high for a fool: he openeth not his mouth in the gate.
- He that deviseth to do evil shall be called a mischievous person.
- The thought of foolishness is sin: and the scorner is an abomination to men.
- If thou faint in the day of adversity, thy strength is small.
- If thou forbear to deliver them that are drawn unto death, and those that are ready to be slain;
- If thou sayest, Behold, we knew it not; doth not he that pondereth the heart consider it? and he that keepeth thy soul, doth not he know it? and shall not he render to every man according to his works?
- My son, eat thou honey, because it is good; and the honeycomb, which is sweet to thy taste:
- So shall the knowledge of wisdom be unto thy soul: when thou hast found it, then there shall be a reward, and thy expectation shall not be cut off.
- Lay not wait, O wicked man, against the dwelling of the righteous; spoil not his resting place:
- For a just man falleth seven times, and riseth up again: but the wicked shall fall into mischief.
- Rejoice not when thine enemy falleth, and let not thine heart be glad when he stumbleth:
- Lest the LORD see it, and it displease him, and he turn away his wrath from him.
- Fret not thyself because of evil men, neither be thou envious at the wicked;
- For there shall be no reward to the evil man; the candle of the wicked shall be put out.
- My son, fear thou the LORD and the king: and meddle not with them that are given to change:
- For their calamity shall rise suddenly; and who knoweth the ruin of them both?
- These things also belong to the wise. It is not good to have respect of persons in judgment.
- He that saith unto the wicked, Thou art righteous; him shall the people curse, nations shall abhor him:
- But to them that rebuke him shall be delight, and a good blessing shall come upon them.
- Every man shall kiss his lips that giveth a right answer.
- Prepare thy work without, and make it fit for thyself in the field; and afterwards build thine house.
- Be not a witness against thy neighbour without cause; and deceive not with thy lips.
- Say not, I will do so to him as he hath done to me: I will render to the man according to his work.
- I went by the field of the slothful, and by the vineyard of the man void of understanding;
- And, lo, it was all grown over with thorns, and nettles had covered the face thereof, and the stone wall thereof was broken down.
- Then I saw, and considered it well: I looked upon it, and received instruction.
- Yet a little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to sleep:
- So shall thy poverty come as one that travelleth; and thy want as an armed man.
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In today's political climate, particularly in the United States, we hear a lot about the need for change. One major candidate for President has made it the focal point of his campaign, while the other alludes to it on a regular basis. While there are times when a change of direction might be a good thing, Solomon gives a warning here that all change is not good, and according to verse 22 can result in calamity.
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The basic principle of Proverbs is repeated in this verse: Fear thou the Lord. He adds to it the admonition that we ought to be obedient to those in civil authority over us. Paul taught the same thing when he stated in Romans 13:1,
"Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers".
The warning in today's verse is that we need to be careful that we not get involved with those who want to rebel against the God-given authority. In terms of politics, there is an acceptable way to change things. You do it with your vote. Anarchy is not appropriate, and those who would encourage a radical change away from our current constitutional system of government need to be avoided. Accordingly, it seems obvious to me that had our government chosen to function within the guidelines established by the Constitution, we would not have many of the problems that exist today.
More importantly, we need to shun those who advocate changing the doctrines of the faith. Certainly we see many who have decided to change the Scriptures, both with new Greek texts and with modern paraphrased translations. There has been a change in church music from worship to entertainment. There has been a change from churches that seek to glorify God to churches that seek to draw a crowd. Personal holiness has been changed to license. That which used to be considered sin is now routinely practiced. Sound doctrine has been rejected and toleration and "unity" have been exalted. Expository preaching has been replaced by humorous stories, drama, and psycho-babble connected by the occasional Scripture reference. All of this change has done harm to the cause of Christ and is leading the church towards calamity and its proponents to judgment.
Stick with what God has said, and you'll never go wrong.
Pastor Mark J Montgomery