Posts Tagged ‘lord jesus christ’


SIN

GET THE HELL OUT OF YOU! 

Proverbs: 06:16-19 (16) There are six things the LORD hates, seven that are detestable to him, (17) haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, (18) a heart that devises wicked schemes, feet that are quick to rush into evil, (19) a false witness who pours out lies, and a man who stirs up dissension among brothers. 

How bad is sin? God hates it with extreme disgust and intense distaste! Sin is an abomination to the LORD! What men call faults, errors, or mistakes – God calls sin! He despises and abhors sin – He hates it! With our degraded concept of God’s holiness, we cannot know the full extent of God’s incredible hatred of sin. With a degraded concept of God’s character, foolish men imagine that God must be like them.

There is none holy as the Lord (1 Sam 2:2). Even the heavens are not clean in His sight (Job 15:14-16). Worship Him!

The blessed LORD hates all sin equally, with an infinite hatred, but Solomon sought to warn his son about several that destroy wisdom and leave man exposed before his holy Creator. The seven sins are pride, lying, murder, evil thoughts, mischief, false witnesses, and sowing discord.

The fear of the LORD, which is the foundation of wisdom and understanding, includes a God-like hatred for sin. Solomon wrote later in Proverbs, “The fear of the LORD is to hate evil: pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, and the forward (difficult to deal with) mouth, do I hate” (8:13). David wrote, “Ye that love the LORD, hate evil.”

In an effeminate and compromising society, it is impossible to get a proper view of sin. Criminals are pardoned; sin is glamorized by the entertainment industry and justified by the educational system; and all levels of authority allow sin to go unchecked or punish it mercifully and slowly – so leniently and slowly it is no deterrent at all (Eccl 8:11 When the sentence for a crime is not quickly carried out, the hearts of the people are filled with schemes to do wrong).

How bad is sin? God condemned Satan to an eternal hell for pride (Is 14:12-15; Matt 25:41). God condemned mankind to an eternal hell for Adam eating the fruit from a forbidden tree (Gen 2:16-17; 3:1-7; Rom 5:12-14). And He drowned the entire world in a flood of water, without regard to age or sex, for their sin and wickedness (Gen 7:21-23).

How bad is sin? The LORD annihilated seven nations of Canaan for abominable atrocities like adultery and sodomy, two sins glamorized in America (Lev 18:1-30; Acts 13:19). A man was stoned to death for picking up sticks on the Sabbath (Num 15:32-36). And God killed a man and his wife in church for fudging their giving (Acts 5:1-11).

How bad is sin? God required capital punishment for disrespectful children (30:17; Deut 27:16). He required the death penalty for adultery (Lev 20:10), and He measures even the desire for another woman as adultery (Matt 5:28). He considers unjust anger and cruel words as implicit murder (Matt 5:21-26). And He counts the violation of one instruction as breaking the entire law, for even one transgression is of infinite evil (Jas 2:10-11).

How bad is sin? In order for God to accept any man in His presence, He had to send His only begotten Son to be tortured to death in a substitutionary payment for sin! In the crucifixion of Jesus of Nazareth, we clearly see God’s hatred for sin, for He forsook His beloved Son, when the sins of the elect were laid to His charge (Matt 27:46). God is able and willing to love His elect, only because He views them in Christ Jesus (Eph 1-3-6).

One of the greatest character traits of the Lord Jesus Christ was His love of righteousness and hatred of sin (Ps 45:7; Heb 1:8-9). For this glorious attribute, the blessed God honored Him far above all other men. From His example, we can see that nobility of spirit and approval before God is in direct proportion to love of virtue and hatred of sin.

Reader, if your knowledge of God is from a sweet Sunday School teacher, you probably think God hates the sin, but loves the sinner. Guess again! David wrote, “You are not a God who takes pleasure in evil; with you the wicked cannot dwell. The arrogant cannot stand in your presence; you hate all who do wrong. You destroy those who tell lies; bloodthirsty and deceitful men the LORD abhors. (Ps 5:4-6). 

What should you do? Reorder your value system! Hate Hollywood and the NEA! Teach your children to abhor sin and evil. Teach them to love righteousness and holiness. Exalt good men and women; despise bad men and women. Punish sin severely; reward virtue generously! Love the whole Bible, not just pet verses! Choose to be like David, and hate all evil influences in your holy desire to walk perfectly before your God

 

(Ps 101:2-8) (2)I will be carful to lead a blameless life – when will you come to me? I will walk in my house with blameless heart. (3)I will set before my eyes no vile thing.

The deeds of faithless men I hate; they will not cling to me. (4) Men of perverse heart shall be far from me; I will have nothing to do with evil.

(5) Whoever slanders his neighbor in secret, him will I put to silence; whoever has haughty eyes and a proud heart, him will I not endure. (6) My eyes will be on the faithful in the land, that they may dwell with me; he whose walk is blameless will minister to me.

(7) No one who pratices deceit will dwell in my house; no one who speaks falsely will stand in my presence.

(8)Every morning I will put to silence all the wicked in the land; I will cut off every evildoer from the city of the LORD.

 

Lets break these down 

Proverbs: 06:16-19 (16) There are six things the LORD hates, seven that are detestable to him, (17) haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, (18) a heart that devises wicked schemes, feet that are quick to rush into evil, (19) a false witness who pours out lies, and a man who stirs up dissension among brothers.

 (17) haughty eyes, a lying tongue and hands that shed innocent blood

God hates seven things, and here are three! Though pride, lying, and murder are accepted today, the LORD Jehovah hates them. He has not changed, even remotely, since eternity! If you want war with the great and terrible God, who is holy, then allow one of these sins in yourself or those around you (Ps 47:2; 66:3-5; 68:35; 99:3).

An effeminate society may try to outlaw hatred, but the God of the Bible despises political correctness and still hates sin and sinners (Ps 5:5; 11:5; Mal 3:6; Heb 13:8)! Do not deceive yourself! The dreadful God of heaven is not the senile old man painted by Michelangelo for popes and cardinals to dream about! He is angry at the wicked every day (Ps 7:11)! And He will soon cast His enemies into hell (Ps 9:17; Rev 20:11-15)!

Before excusing or justifying yourself in the condemning light of this proverb, remember three things. God hates more than seven sins – He hates all sin and sinners (Ex 34:7; Nah 1:3). The application is very broad and includes much more than meets the eye (Ps 119:96; Matt 5:21-22). And you will give a full account to Him shortly (Eccl 12:13-14).

The right sense is important here, lest the self-righteous try to escape (Neh 8:8). When the Bible condemns a proud look, a lying tongue, and murdering hands, it intends much more than a sinful face, speech, or actions. It includes every associated sin that would fall under that general category. For example, a proud heart with a humble look is damned!

The LORD hates a proud look! He cannot stand any kind of pride in angels or men. He cast Lucifer and his angels out of heaven for pride (Is 14:12-15; I Tim 3:6; Jude 1:6). He hates self-esteem, strife, haughty thoughts, self-promotion, proud anger, an irreligious life, selfishness, boasting, conceited eyes, and stubbornness among other sins (13:10; 14:3; 21:24; 25:27; 26:16; 30:17; Ps 10:2-6; Is 2:11-12; Rom 12:3; Gal 6:3; II Tim 3:1-5).

The LORD hates a lying tongue! He loves truth, and He hates any kind of deception. The devil is the father of lies, and his children are just like him (John 8:44; Eph 2:1-3). Liars are going to hell (Rev 21:8; 22:15). God hates exaggeration, fraud, misrepresentation, false witnessing, slander, flattery, silence under oath, and joking among other sins of lying (10:18; 12:22; 19:5; 20:23; 26:18-19,28; Ex 23:1; Deut 19:16-21; Job 17:5).

The LORD hates murderous hands! He loves life, for He is the living God, and He gives life and breath to all (Gen 2:7; Is 42:5; Acts 17:25). Life is sacred, not because man is special, but because God created it and defends it! The devil was a murderer from the beginning, and so are his children, who are all going to hell (John 8:44; Rev 21:8; 22:15).

God hates abortion, backbiting, bitterness, debate, envy, grudges, malice, manslaughter, negligent homicide, strife, foolish anger, neglecting child discipline, railing, foolish killing of animals, ignoring cries for help, lack of mercy, wrath, withholding capital punishment, and talebearing among other sins of murder (12:20; 13:24; 22:6-7; 23:13-14; 31:8-9; Ex 21:22-25,28-29; Deut 22:6-8; Matt 5:21-26; Gal 5:19-21; Eph 4:31-32).

God’s word is to be interpreted and applied broadly. Its commandments go far beyond what meets the eye, or the limitations your heart wishes were on them! These are things God hates, and yet they are hardly preached against today! Seeker sensitive types want you to think all is well! But you can see there might be one or two sins that condemn you! You need to teach these things to your children, and you need to humble yourself.

Reader! You are condemned! David put it this way, “If thou, LORD, shouldest mark iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand? (Ps 130:3.) If God marks and records sins, then every man is doomed to eternal judgment. And He does just that! He will show you every violation of this proverb in a day fast approaching (Eccl 12:13-14; Rev 20:11-15).

But that is not the end of the story, for David wrote next, “But there is forgiveness with thee, that thou mayest be feared” (Ps 130:4). Without forgiveness, God would be unapproachable; but there is mercy for those that call upon Him, which only the elect will ever do (John 3:19; 5:40; 6:44; 8:45)! Faith is the result of predestination (Acts 13:48).

God chose to forgive His elect before the world began by ordaining Jesus Christ as a perfect substitute to die for them (John 6:38-39; 10:26-29; 17:2; Rom 5:6-21; 8:29-39; Eph 1:3-11; I Pet 1:20). God owes His mercy and love to none; and He gives it to those He chooses (Ex 33:19; Rom 9:15). If you love Him, He loved you first (I John 4:19).

18) a heart that devises wicked schemes, feet that are quick to rush into evil,

God is watching your heart and your feet. How well are you ruling your thoughts? He will hold you accountable for them in this life and the next. He hates the wicked imaginations and fantasies of your foolish heart. How well are you restraining and guiding your feet? He hates hasty and impulsive sinners who rush from sin to sin.

Contrary to popular opinion, hate is good. God hates seven sins and sinners, as our context clearly shows (6:16-19). God hates the foolish workers of iniquity (Ps 5:5); He hates lovers of violence (Ps 11:5); He will declare soon that He never knew them – He never had any affection for them (Matt 7:23). David also hated them (Ps 139:21-22). Two of the sins and sinners that God hates are listed in this proverb. Reader, are you guilty?

You cannot hide from Jehovah’s all-seeing eyes (15:3; Ps 11:4). The Creator God sees and ponders all you do (5:21; Jer 17:10). In His holy sight, foolish thoughts are sin (24:9; Ezek 14:4; Matt 5:28). He can divide between your soul and spirit, and every thought and intent of your heart is naked before Him (Heb 4:12-14). He sees where you go and what you do, no matter how well you hide them from others (Job 34:21; Ps 139:1-6).

What is a heart that devises wicked imaginations? It is a heart that forms sinful thoughts from lustful affections and emotions. God described Noah’s generation with very similar words (Gen 6:5). Do you allow lusts of your heart to form sinful ideas and thoughts? This is precisely how sin gets started (Jas 1:13-16). You must guard and rule your heart (4:23).

Do you have sexual fantasies (6:25; Job 31:1)? Do you surmise evil about others (I Tim 6:3-5)? Do you hold grudges (Lev 19:18; Matt 18:35)? Are you puffed up about yourself (Col 2:18)? Do you envy the advantages of others (Jas 3:14-16)? Do you hate anyone in your heart (Lev 19:17)? Do you curse authority at all under your breath (Eccl 10:20)?

What are feet that are swift in running to mischief? They describe a man who is hasty and impulsive to sin (1:16). He has a greedy desire for it; for he not only lacks conscience and restraint, but he also lasciviously craves sin (Eph 4:19). Revenge is sweet to him, and he races to exact vengeance. He is often in trouble, as he speedily goes from sin to sin.

If you have a temper, it is your duty to rule it, or your quick anger will offend the holy God (14:29; 16:32; Jas 1:19-21). Stay away from angry persons, for they will lead you to sin (22:24-25; 29:22). Are you cautious and slow in dealings, or do you rush impetuously ahead (19:2,11; 22:3)? If you have sinned in the past, then turn, run away, and stay away!

The all-seeing eyes of Jehovah are looking for faithful men, for He will put forth His might to bless them (II Chr 16:9; Ps 34:11-16). Keep your heart with all diligence, for out of it are the issues of life (4:23). Love the true God with all your heart (Deut 6:4-5). Keep your feet in the way of understanding (21:19). Do not go near the strange woman (5:8). Avoid the wide gate and broad way that leads to destruction (Matt 7:13).

(19) a false witness who pours out lies, and a man who stirs up dissension among brothers.

Here are two of seven things and persons God hates (6:16-19). He hates liars who falsely witness against others, and He hates pests who cause division in a church. He could have said He hated the lies and discord, but He clearly said He hates the ones doing these sins.

God is holy (Is 6:3; Rev 4:8). He hates sin (8:13; Heb 1:9). He is too holy to love sin or sinners (Job 15:5; Hab 1:13). He hates sinners (Ps 5:4-6; 11:4-7; 139:21-22). In spite of effeminate objections, God hates sin and sinners. The Sunday school lie that God hates sin but loves the sinner is false. God hates sinners, and here He lists two of them.

He will tell the wicked in the last day that He never knew them – He never loved them (Matt 7:23; 13:47-50). He will tell them to get lost, and rightly so! He loves and accepts only those He made holy through Jesus Christ – His beloved elect (Eph 1:3-6; Rom 9:15).

Men bark against this holy doctrine, but let God be true! Does He love Satan, too? They don’t fret about the devil, because their profane and vain babbling is pure selfish pride and love for themselves. They are too arrogant to submit to a holy and sovereign God.

The LORD said, “Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour” (Ex 20:16). God hates this sin much, so He included it in the summary list of ten. He knew the terrible damage a wicked mouth could do to others, and how little defense there is against it, so He condemned it forcefully (19:5,9; 25:18; Ex 23:1; Zech 8:17). The Bible strongly attacks lying, false accusing, slandering, whispering, backbiting, and talebearing.

When men are tried for their lives, freedom, or fortune, it is imperative witnesses tell the whole truth and nothing but the truth; so our nation solemnly swears them to this duty before taking testimony or cross-examination. God required at least two witnesses in all cases to protect from false testimony (Deut 19:15); if a man testified falsely in Israel, he was punished with the very judgment at stake, no matter how horrible (Deut 19:16-21).

A lying and false accusing mouth can cause enormous harm, for rape of reputation and character is surely worse than that of the body (Ps 35:11-12). Physical violence is horrible, but allows for some defense and recovery; verbal slander and false accusations are worse, and there is very little defense with long lasting damage.

Readers beloved of God, it is your duty to be men and women of truth and principle (Ex 18:21). Carefully consider your thoughts, words, and intent before saying anything about others. Let your lips praise others rather than detract from them, and if you ever must testify of or for another, be scrupulously faithful and honest with every word (14:5).

God also loves unity, especially among His people (Ps 133:1-3; I Cor 1:10; Eph 4:3-4). He hates those who openly or subtly disturb fellowship and peace (6:12-15; 16:28; 26:20; Rom 16:17-18). He condemns variance, debate, envy, implacability, emulations, evil surmising, strife, sedition, tumults, and whispering. Instead He commands and commends peace (Matt 5:9; II Cor 13:11; Phil 3:16; Col 3:15; Jas 3:17-18).

A chord is harmonious blending of coordinated notes; accord is agreement and harmony; and concord is the state of peace and agreement between parties. All three words are related, meaning agreement, harmony, and peace. But discord is an antonym, meaning absence of concord or harmony. It is disagreement, variance, dissension, and strife. Is your church as harmonious as it should be? Do you labor to make all notes blend?

Wicked persons sow discord when they disrupt the harmony, agreement, unity, and peace of a church or other society by spreading the poison of division and enmity. They alienate the affections of men and stir up their passions against one another. They foment strife, contention, jealousies, and confusion by talebearing, insinuations, foolish questions, seditious doubts, forming of cliques, and other perverse means. These separatists are sensual enemies of true saints, and they have not the Spirit (Jude 1:19).

Beloved reader, let us be the peacemakers our Saviour blessed (Matt 5:9). Take every opportunity to promote unity and agreement; work hard to keep yourself and others in harmony with the congregation. Let us seek peace and pursue it (I Pet 3:11). Make the holy endeavour of peace and reconciliation a priority in your life (Eph 4:3; Matt 5:23-24).

Consider well our blessed Lord and His perfect conduct in light of these two sins. The Jews used false witnesses to condemn Jesus to death (Matt 26:59), but He is the faithful and true witness (Rev 3:14; 19:11). The wicked Jews divided over Jesus and stirred up the Gentiles against the apostles (John 9:16; Acts 14:2), but the Prince of Peace destroyed Jew/Gentile enmity and made both one by His cross (Is 9:6; John 11:52; Eph 2:11-22)!

SIN

KEEP THE HELL OUT OF YOU!

 


Under Gods Command

2 Corinthians 13:14 May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.

Paul’s farewell blessing invokes all three members of the Trinity: Father (God), Son (Lord Jesus Christ), and Holy Spirit. Although the term Trinity is not explicitly used in Scripture, verses such as this one show that it was believed and experienced through knowing God’s grace, love, and fellowship. See Luke 1:35—the angel Gabriel’s announcement of Jesus’ birth to Mary; Matthew 3:17—the Father’s voice heard at the baptism of Jesus; and Matthew 28:19—Jesus’ commission to the disciples.

Paul was dealing with an ongoing problem in the Corinthian church. He could have refused to communicate until they cleared up their situation, but he loved them and reached out to them again with the love of Christ.

Lets Bring it Home: Love, however, means that sometimes we must confront those we care about. Both authority and personal concern are needed in dealing with people who are ruining their lives with sin. But there are several wrong approaches in confronting others, and these can further break relationships rather than heal them. We can be legalistic and blast people away with the laws they should be obeying. We can turn away from them because we don’t want to face the situation. We can isolate them by gossiping about their problem and turning others against them as well. Or, like Paul, we can seek to build relationships by taking a better approach—sharing, communicating, and caring. This is a difficult approach that can drain us emotionally, but it is the best way for other people, and it is the only Christlike way to deal with others’ sin.


Under Gods Command

Proverbs 17:24 A discerning man keeps wisdom in view, but a fool’s eyes wander to the ends of the earth.

You have known fools. They bounce from one thing to another. They are excited with this and then that. They are always seeking happiness and success, which they never find. They love new things. They cannot focus on important matters. They are easily distracted from their duties like children. They look in strange places for answers. They dream. They talk a lot. They are not content. They are fickle, unsettled, and easily confused.

But a wise man is very different. He has understanding as the guide and rule of his conduct. He is focused on all aspects of life with the resolute purpose of keeping God’s commandments. He has not forgotten what he was taught, nor is he ignorant of the Scriptures. He searches the Bible for knowledge and wisdom, and he proves all things by it (Acts 17:11; I Thess 5:21). He is content with life and confident in most any dilemma.

Fools are often scorners – resenting correction and instruction – so they learn very little (Pr 14:6). A fool is so thrilled with foolishness that he avoids wisdom and understanding (Pr 15:14). A fool is so lazy that he never applies the diligence it takes to acquire wisdom, for he would rather enjoy and tell his own thoughts (Pr 18:1-2). Fools are often arrogant, which makes it impossible for them to identify and learn wisdom (Pr 26:12).

Wise men do not daydream or speculate. They would rather muse than be amused (Ps 143:5). They prefer meditation over imagination, instruction over recreation, and self-examination over self-actualization. They want truth, and they define it as God’s certain words in the Bible (Pr 22:17-21). They have no regard for man’s opinions (Ps 119:98-100). They do not have to look for wisdom, because they know it (Pr 14:6). They have it hid in their hearts (Ps 119:11,128), and they meditate on it day and night (Ps 1:3).

You arrived on earth knowing nothing. You are here a short time, and your whole duty is to fear God and keep His commandments (Eccl 12:13-14). Your flesh, the sinfully depraved part of your being, sees with the lust of the eyes (I John 2:15-17). Satan and the world offer many things to see (Luke 4:5-7). The fool gives in to his lusts and wastes his life chasing illusions. But David prayed to be saved from looking at vanity (Ps 119:37)!

It is foolish to spend your life craving something better, while you race toward something bitter – death! Godliness with contentment is great gain (I Tim 6:6). You cannot beat this simple rule for a successful life. Godliness is living prudently with wisdom as your great pursuit (Pr 4:5-9; 8:17). Contentment is appreciation for God being your friend and trusting Him for the things you have as being best (Heb 13:5-6). But fools must dream!

The fool is always seeking greener pastures near and far. His mind is an open sieve, receiving much froth from vain ideas and retaining nothing of value. Solomon warned of the vanity and vexation of a wandering desire (Eccl 6:9). But the fool would rather study U.N. politics, Ben Spock child training hallucinations, practice yoga, or watch lifestyles of the rich and famous on television than apply God’s word to the salvation of his family.

The fool’s mantra is, “I live life with an open mind.” His mind is so open that anything can fly in and nothing of value will stay. The world sends a steady stream of advertising, fads, public opinion, peer pressure, questions, and other forms of manipulation to bend his mind to the will of Satan, who grins with wicked glee at his foolish mantra that gives the father of lies entrance to his soul. Seal your mind with God’s word (Ps 119:128)!

There are important goals for life, and there are foolish wastes of life. Knowledge is better than ignorance, wisdom than folly, righteousness than wickedness, heaven than hell, and God than man. While Martha was worried about distracting details, Mary knew the one thing needful for her life was hearing instruction from the Lord Jesus Christ (Luke 10:38-42). Reader, how would the Saviour classify you? Like Martha? Or Mary?

In order to save you from yourself and your wandering desire, the Lord of heaven has called, prepared, and sent men to be pastors and teachers (Ps 68:18; Eccl 12:8-14; Jer 3:15; Mal 2:7; Eph 4:8-12; II Tim 3:16-17). What is their job? Not social work! Not administration! Not weddings and funerals! Not monasteries! Not stuffy theological work! Their job is to keep your eyes in your head and your heart in the truth: they will perfect you from being tossed to and fro like the fool (Eph 4:13-14; Col 1:28-29).

Have you searched for one of these men? Can you submit to his instruction about the true priorities of life? If you can, you will be full of understanding, and wisdom is directly before you. He will reject foolish and unlearned questions, for he wants you settled in the faith once delivered to the saints. He will work with the Spirit of God to conform your every imagination and thought to the inspired and infallible words of God (II Cor 10:4-6).

But can you stay focused for the one or two hours a week of his instruction? Most cannot. Jesus Christ described them as wayside hearers. The preaching finds no lodging place in their unprepared minds and hearts, and the devil quickly takes it away. They leave every church assembly more ignorant than before. Literally! Read it (Luke 8:12,18)!

Because fools dislike insistence on correction, instruction, reproofs, and warnings, they look for flattering teachers. They want teachers to entertain them with fables and help them explore the cesspools of human imagination and education (Is 30:8-11; I Tim 6:3-5,20-21; II Tim 4:3-4). Oh, how they love such junk! Teach me more, they cry! But God has promised to send them strong delusion to believe a lie (II Thess 2:9-12; II Tim 3:6-7).

Reader, you have a choice. It is a serious choice. You are reading one of many offers of wisdom in the Bible. God has again approached you with His word to make you wise. It is right in front of you, if you have an understanding heart. It is disgusting, if your eyes prefer the ends of the earth. Eliminate any distractions and seek wisdom (Pr 4:7; 18:1).


Under Gods Command

2 Corinthians 8:7-8 But just as you excel in everything thing in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in complete earnestness and in the love we have kindled in you—see that you also excel in this grace of giving.    I am not commanding you, but I want to test the sincerity of your love by comparing it with the earnestness of others. For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich.

The Corinthian believers excelled in everything—they had faith, good preaching (“speech”), much knowledge, much enthusiasm (“earnestness”), much love.. Paul encouraged them to also excel in the grace of giving. Too often, stewardship of money is given a different status than other aspects of discipleship. Most believers would not want growth in faith, knowledge, or love to stop at a certain level. Yet many decide a fixed percentage of their money to give and stay there for life. True discipleship includes growing in the mature use of all resources, so giving should expand as well. God can give you the desire and enable you to increase your capacity to give. Don’t miss this opportunity for growth.

Lets Bring it Home: God can give you the desire and enable you to increase your capacity to give. Don’t miss this opportunity for growth.


UNDER GODS COMMAND 

Proverbs 8:36 But whoever fails to find me harms himself; all who hate me love death. 

Do it my way, or die! This is the ultimatum of Lady Wisdom! She freely offered you wisdom, which is more precious than anything on earth (Pr 8:1-11). She listed fabulous blessings that follow it (Pr 8:12-21), and she described wisdom’s existence with God and role in creation (Pr 8:22-31). If you refuse her, you are choosing a slow and painful death for yourself (Pr 1:24-33). She has no mercy for those rejecting her (Pr 8:33; 9:12; 29:1).

Proverbs chapter 8 is a lengthy personification of wisdom as a woman. It is a beautiful and powerful figure of speech, but it hides the ferocious severity of this woman, if you spurn her. Calamities will surely come in your life, if you reject wisdom, and she will laugh and mock at your pain and trouble (Pr 1:26-27). She will ignore your cries, when you are drowning in anguish, distress, and fear, while your soul and life are destroyed.

She is not unjustly cruel; fools are wickedly profane! If an offer of wisdom is rejected, then the brute beast that despised it deserves to suffer. There is nothing unjust here. Since wisdom is the principal matter of life and eternity, rejecting it is arrogant suicide. Those that sin against wisdom by choosing their own ideas are wronging their own souls. Those that hate wisdom and scorn her correction and instruction must love a painful death.

Wisdom is the only way to live a happy, prosperous, safe, and successful life. If you rebel against it, you must love the dysfunctional lives that torture the souls of most today. Dysfunction is epidemic; divorce, drugs, debt, disobedient children, disease, depression, and drunkenness are rampant. Lady Wisdom offers the cure. If you reject her, you wrong your own soul. If you scorn her, you must love death, for that is where you are headed.

Neither God, nor wisdom, nor the Bible is a take-it-or-leave-it matter. There is no option for agreeing to disagree with the God of heaven (Eccl 12:13-14; John 4:24). There is no option to accept parts of the Bible and reject others (Ps 119:128; I Tim 6:3-5). Mankind has two branches – the small minority following the strait and narrow way to life, and the large majority following the wide and broad way to destruction (Matt 7:13-14).

The great and dreadful God of heaven is infinitely sovereign over your life. You are nothing. He is the Potter; you are the clay (Is 45:9-10; Rom 9:20-21). He does according to His will in heaven and among the inhabitants of the earth; no one can resist or question Him (Dan 4:35). He has made all things for Himself (Pr 16:4; Rev 4:11). He created you with an eternal soul that you cannot turn off – without even asking you. He did not ask you for approval for even one circumstance of your life. Humble yourself before Him!

He revealed Himself in creation, so that all men are without excuse for not worshipping and thanking Him (Ps 19:1-6; Acts 14:17; Rom 1:18-20). Because man thinks himself wise, He hardens their hearts and blinds their minds to defile themselves with sodomy and other abominable and inconvenient sins (Rom 1:21-32). Do you know the God of the Bible (Is 45:5-7; Acts 17:23)? He changes not, and He never will (Heb 12:28-29; 13:8).

The world has entered its final stages of existence. The perilous times of the last days have brought an effeminate and compromising brand of Christianity (II Tim 3:1-7). These carnal and worldly Christians despise Bible preaching – they much prefer fables and entertainment, especially if they can wear cutoffs and flip-flops and sip Starbucks coffee while skimming 10-15 different Bible versions on a big screen (II Tim 4:3-4).

These modern frauds despise the words of the living God. They want to hear smooth things, just like the truth rejecters before them (Is 30:8-11). They want Jesus rap, Christian rock, and heavenly funk rather than sound doctrine. They want purpose driven drivel and seeker sensitive sap rather than, “Thus saith the Lord.” Lady Wisdom says, “But he that sinneth against me wrongeth his own soul: all they that hate me love death.”

How did the Lord Jesus Christ state the same sentiments to the Jews that killed Him, “For the days shall come upon thee, that thine enemies shall cast a trench about thee, and compass thee round, and keep thee in on every side, And shall lay thee even with the ground, and thy children within thee; and they shall not leave in thee one stone upon another; because thou knewest not the time of thy visitation” (Luke 19:43-44). And He fulfilled it perfectly – to the letter – in 70AD with the Roman armies under Titus.

Reader, what will you do? The God of heaven has revealed Himself to you in creation. Lady Wisdom has spoken to you from the book of Proverbs. The Bible is the only source of righteousness, truth, and wisdom in the world, and its primary message is the supreme authority of the Lord Jesus Christ as the Son of God. What is His message for those who reject Him? If any man love not the Lord Jesus Christ, let him be Anathema Maranatha. Let him be cursed at the coming of Jesus Christ (I Cor 16:22). Seek Him today.


Under Gods Command

2 Corinthians 1:3-5 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God. For just as the sufferings of Christ flow over into our lives, so also through Christ our comfort overflows.

Many think that when God comforts us, our troubles should go away. But if that were always so, people would turn to God only out of a desire to be relieved of pain and not out of love for him. We must understand that being comforted can also mean receiving strength, encouragement, and hope to deal with our troubles. The more we suffer, the more comfort God gives us.

Lets Bring it Home: If you are feeling overwhelmed, allow God to comfort you. Remember that every trial you endure will help you comfort other people who are suffering similar troubles.


Under Gods Command

Proverbs 12:26 A righteous man is cautious in friendship, but the way of the wicked leads them astray

All men are not equal, not even close. A righteous man is superior to his wicked neighbor in character, conduct, situation, and expectation. But this superiority does his neighbor and other wicked men no good, for they are seduced by the world to continue in their wickedness. They cannot and will not choose the more excellent way of righteousness.

Saul and David, the first two kings of Israel, illustrate this proverb perfectly. Solomon would have known the comparison very well from childhood, so the Holy Spirit reduced the royal history preceding him to this pithy and precious statement of wisdom.

David was a righteous man after God’s own heart (I Sam 13:14; Acts 13:22). He conducted himself so perfectly his name was much revered in Israel (I Sam 18:30). Every king had to be compared to him (I Kgs 15:1-5), and even the Lord Jesus is known as David and the Son of David (Jer 30:9; Matt 22:42). The sweet psalmist of Israel was more excellent than his neighbor. He was a noble man, as all still admit to this day.

Saul was his neighbor. Saul was a profane man. He would not wait for Samuel, but offered a sacrifice himself (I Sam 13:10-14). He tried to kill his own son for eating a little honey, but the people stopped him (I Sam 14:43-45). In the matter of the Amalekites, God compared his rebellion and stubbornness to witchcraft and idolatry (I Sam 15:22-23). Rather than waiting on the Lord, he consulted the witch of Endor (I Sam 28:1-7).

God compared these two men. Samuel said, “The LORD hath rent the kingdom of Israel from thee this day, and hath given it to a neighbour of thine, that is better than thou” (I Sam 15:28). Samuel also said, “And the LORD hath done to him, as he spake by me: for the LORD hath rent the kingdom out of thine hand, and given it to thy neighbour, even to David” (I Sam 28:17). Understand the proverb. Be attentive to comparisons God makes.

Saul knew the superior excellency of David. He heard him play the harp skillfully; he watched him kill Goliath; he heard his modest response; he watched his son Jonathan prefer David; he saw the people accept David; and he knew that God was with David. He said to David, “Thou art more righteous than I: for thou hast rewarded me good, whereas I have rewarded thee evil” (I Sam 24:17). Saul also said to David, “Blessed be thou, my son David: thou shalt both do great things, and also shalt still prevail” (I Sam 26:25).

But this knowledge about David’s superiority did Saul no good, for the envy of his wicked heart found greater comfort and satisfaction in the way of the wicked. He was seduced away from David’s righteousness to his own folly. Rather than begging God for forgiveness and befriending David, he sought repeatedly to kill him in jealous rages. He degenerated in wickedness until he was lying on the ground before the witch of Endor. Two days later his head was cut off and his body nailed to the wall of a Philistine village.

“The righteous is more excellent than his neighbour.” Righteousness is the goal. You need to live like the sons of God (Matt 5:43-48; Eph 5:8; I Thess 5:5-11; I Pet 2:9-11). If the world hates you, rejoice and be very glad, for they hated the Saviour and all His disciples, though this wicked world was not worthy of even their presence (Heb 11:38).

“But the way of the wicked seduceth them.” Worldly men may heap up riches and live extravagantly; they may give themselves over greedily to all sort of carnal pleasures; they may live ever so fine with the groupies of this world singing their praise; but they are rushing through the wide gate and down the broad way to destruction both now and later.

The righteous and the wicked have equality in their nature from Adam, but they are totally different by other measures. The character of the righteous is more excellent, for they have the Spirit of God within them, conforming them to the image of Jesus Christ and bearing much virtuous fruit against which there is no law (Gal 5:22-23; Eph 2:10; 4:24; II Pet 1:3). They love, forgive, serve, and die like no others of the human race.

The conduct of the righteous is more excellent, for they have intimate knowledge of coming judgment and Christ’s infinite love to motivate them (II Cor 5:9-15). They have the glorious example of the Lord Jesus Christ to follow (I Pet 2:18-25). And they have the perfect rules of heaven’s wisdom in the Scriptures that the world despises (Is 8:20).

The situation of the righteous is more excellent, for he is a child of God, a king and priest with full privileges at the throne of God, the temple of the Holy Ghost, with God’s ears open to His prayers, a sympathetic mediator at God’s right hand, perfectly righteous by justification in Christ, a friend of God, and with heaven’s angels for his personal servants.

The expectation of the righteous is more excellent, for they shall be admitted to heaven’s glory with great joy, while Jesus Christ shall repudiate the wicked and cast them into the lake of fire. Which neighbor is more excellent, Lazarus in Abraham’s bosom, or the rich man in hell? Which inheritance is more excellent, heaven’s mansions or hell’s fires?

Wicked men cannot see the superiority of the righteous, for they are seduced by sin and Satan to follow the world to hell. Balaam prophesied of Israel’s excellence, but his love of money seduced him (Num 23:10; II Pet 2:15). Herod gladly heard John the Baptist, but his wicked wife seduced him to behead John (Mark 6:17-29). Stephen’s face glowed like an angel; the Jews could not resist his wisdom; he preached a great sermon; but the rabid Jews were provoked by their hatred of Jesus Christ to stone him (Acts 6:8 – 7:60).

The way of the righteous and the way of the wicked are totally incompatible with each other. The righteous hate the wicked, and the wicked hate the righteous (Pr 29:27). It has always been that way, and it will always be this way. Righteous men seek out other good men to love (Ps 16:3; 119:63; Tit 1:8), and they do all they can to avoid the wicked (Ps 101:1-8; II Thess 3:1-2). The wicked are happy in their large crowd rushing down the slippery slope into hell, and the righteous rejoice with a few believers seeking holiness.

Christian reader, what can you learn? What the world thinks of the righteous is irrelevant! The world may offer temporary pleasure, but it is only seduction to destruction. Wise men reject this world and all its pleasures, philosophies, parties, and privileges. And your life should be more excellent to raise questions from other righteous souls (I Pet 3:15). Grasp these four applications. Choose to grow in favor with God and good men, by rejecting the ways of this wicked world (Luke 2:52; James 4:4; I John 2:15-17). God forbid that any reader of this proverb should be seduced by the insanity of this world.

The blessed Lord Christ was more excellent than all men, yet this world despised and hated Him. They lied about Him, falsely accused Him, exchanged a murderer for Him, mocked Him, tortured Him, and nailed Him naked on a cruel cross in public. The Jews’ love of hypocrisy and ceremonial religion seduced them to get rid of the most excellent neighbor the earth has ever seen! They would do it again today, if they had the chance. And they will do the same to His followers, who are also more excellent than they.