Pathways Through Proverbs
November 20, 2008
Today's Reading - Proverbs 20
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Following Scripture Verses
- Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise.
- The fear of a king is as the roaring of a lion: whoso provoketh him to anger sinneth against his own soul.
- It is an honour for a man to cease from strife: but every fool will be meddling.
- The sluggard will not plow by reason of the cold; therefore shall he beg in harvest, and have nothing.
- Counsel in the heart of man is like deep water; but a man of understanding will draw it out.
- Most men will proclaim every one his own goodness: but a faithful man who can find?
- The just man walketh in his integrity: his children are blessed after him.
- A king that sitteth in the throne of judgment scattereth away all evil with his eyes.
- Who can say, I have made my heart clean, I am pure from my sin?
- Divers weights, and divers measures, both of them are alike abomination to the LORD.
- Even a child is known by his doings, whether his work be pure, and whether it be right.
- The hearing ear, and the seeing eye, the LORD hath made even both of them.
- Love not sleep, lest thou come to poverty; open thine eyes, and thou shalt be satisfied with bread.
- It is naught, it is naught, saith the buyer: but when he is gone his way, then he boasteth.
- There is gold, and a multitude of rubies: but the lips of knowledge are a precious jewel.
- Take his garment that is surety for a stranger: and take a pledge of him for a strange woman.
- Bread of deceit is sweet to a man; but afterwards his mouth shall be filled with gravel.
- Every purpose is established by counsel: and with good advice make war.
- He that goeth about as a talebearer revealeth secrets: therefore meddle not with him that flattereth with his lips.
- Whoso curseth his father or his mother, his lamp shall be put out in obscure darkness.
- An inheritance may be gotten hastily at the beginning; but the end thereof shall not be blessed.
- Say not thou, I will recompense evil; but wait on the LORD, and he shall save thee.
- Divers weights are an abomination unto the LORD; and a false balance is not good.
- Man's goings are of the LORD; how can a man then understand his own way?
- It is a snare to the man who devoureth that which is holy, and after vows to make enquiry.
- A wise king scattereth the wicked, and bringeth the wheel over them.
- The spirit of man is the candle of the LORD, searching all the inward parts of the belly.
- Mercy and truth preserve the king: and his throne is upholden by mercy.
- The glory of young men is their strength: and the beauty of old men is the gray head.
- The blueness of a wound cleanseth away evil: so do stripes the inward parts of the belly.
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I find today's verse to be a great study in human character. Solomon clearly shows an understanding of the ways of commerce and of human nature. The proverb states this: when a man negotiates to buy a certain item, he will use any method that he can to get the price down. The one he uses here is to question the quality of the product. However, once he has finally made the purchase at a price that he wants, he goes away boasting to his friends about how good a deal he got.
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I think that there are a couple lessons here. First of all, I believe that we should be honest in our negotiations. I am certainly not opposed to getting a good deal, but it is wrong to lie in order to receive it. If there is nothing wrong with the merchandise, then it is wrong for me to say that it is flawed just to get a lower price. Clearly there was nothing wrong with the article mentioned in the proverb, for after the man purchased it he boasted about it. He did not buy junk, but he claimed that it was junk in order to lower the cost. This is not right. I have seen situations where work was done on a building, and after it was completed the owner claimed that the job wasn't done correctly in order to get the price that he had originally agreed to lowered. This is stealing, which leads into the second lesson: the Bible teaches that "the laborer is worthy of his reward" (I Tim. 5:18). If a man has produced a product or rendered a service, he deserves to be compensated appropriately. He should not be taken advantage of just so the customer can save some money.
If you would want to receive full payment for the job you have done, then you should be willing to offer full payment to those who have done a job for you. Don't lie or cheat in order to save a few dollars.
Pastor Mark J Montgomery