Pathways Through Proverbs
November 12, 2008
Today's Reading - Proverbs 12
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Following Scripture Verses
- Whoso loveth instruction loveth knowledge: but he that hateth reproof is brutish.
- A good man obtaineth favour of the LORD: but a man of wicked devices will he condemn.
- A man shall not be established by wickedness: but the root of the righteous shall not be moved.
- A virtuous woman is a crown to her husband: but she that maketh ashamed is as rottenness in his bones.
- The thoughts of the righteous are right: but the counsels of the wicked are deceit.
- The words of the wicked are to lie in wait for blood: but the mouth of the upright shall deliver them.
- The wicked are overthrown, and are not: but the house of the righteous shall stand.
- A man shall be commended according to his wisdom: but he that is of a perverse heart shall be despised.
- He that is despised, and hath a servant, is better than he that honoureth himself, and lacketh bread.
- A righteous man regardeth the life of his beast: but the tender mercies of the wicked are cruel.
- He that tilleth his land shall be satisfied with bread: but he that followeth vain persons is void of understanding.
- The wicked desireth the net of evil men: but the root of the righteous yieldeth fruit.
- The wicked is snared by the transgression of his lips: but the just shall come out of trouble.
- A man shall be satisfied with good by the fruit of his mouth: and the recompence of a man's hands shall be rendered unto him.
- The way of a fool is right in his own eyes: but he that hearkeneth unto counsel is wise.
- A fool's wrath is presently known: but a prudent man covereth shame.
- He that speaketh truth sheweth forth righteousness: but a false witness deceit.
- There is that speaketh like the piercings of a sword: but the tongue of the wise is health.
- The lip of truth shall be established for ever: but a lying tongue is but for a moment.
- Deceit is in the heart of them that imagine evil: but to the counsellors of peace is joy.
- There shall no evil happen to the just: but the wicked shall be filled with mischief.
- Lying lips are abomination to the LORD: but they that deal truly are his delight.
- A prudent man concealeth knowledge: but the heart of fools proclaimeth foolishness.
- The hand of the diligent shall bear rule: but the slothful shall be under tribute.
- Heaviness in the heart of man maketh it stoop: but a good word maketh it glad.
- The righteous is more excellent than his neighbour: but the way of the wicked seduceth them.
- The slothful man roasteth not that which he took in hunting: but the substance of a diligent man is precious.
- In the way of righteousness is life; and in the pathway thereof there is no death.
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In this verse we have another exhortation not to be lazy. Solomon contrasts two men: the slothful and the diligent. The idea behind the Hebrew word translated "diligent" is "to dig", which means that the diligent man "digs in" to what he is doing. He doesn't sit around hoping that someone else will do the work for him, not does he put the job off hoping that it will simply go away. He gets busy, works hard, and stays at the task until it is finished. The sloth, of course, does just the opposite. In fact, the Hebrew word used here carries with it an underlying idea of deception or treachery. Apparently he is not simply sleepy, but he really wants to be able to sneak off and do something else, or at the very least avoid fulfilling his obligation to whoever has given him the job. The sloth doesn't simply have an energy problem; he has a sin problem.
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Solomon states that a diligent man will rise to the top and become a leader. This is true in all areas of life. No employer wants to put a lazy man in charge, so hard workers will normally receive promotions and bonuses. A student who is not academically gifted, yet works diligently in school, will find that he not only receives good grades, but his teachers place him in responsible positions. Certainly in God's eyes a man of diligence will be exalted. In the Parable of the Talents in Luke 19, the two servants who were diligent in their use of the master's goods were rewarded with leadership over cities, while the one lazy servant lost that which he had. No matter how much natural ability a sluggard has, his refusal to use his gifts will result in him being a servant to those who "dig in" to the tasks they are given.
God has given each of us abilities and opportunities. How diligent are you in using them?
Pastor Mark J Montgomery