Sunday, 14 September 2014

(258) September 15: Proverbs 28-29 & 2 Corinthians 7

Ask God to open your mind, heart and will to understand, delight in and obey what you read.

To discover:­
As you read consider what lessons strike you most forcefully.

To ponder:
Some lessons from Proverbs 28: The wicked look over their shoulder assuming they are being pursued, but the righteous are confident they are not. Rebelliousness in a nation leads to many rulers are each is deposed and replaced. But order is maintained by a ruler with understanding. A ruler who oppresses the poor destroys their ability to flourish like driving rain on crops. One’s attitude to the law is reflected in one’s attitude to the wicked. Those who seek God, not evil men, understand justice. It is better to be poor and blameless than rich and perverse. A father is honoured by a son who keeps the law, but disgraced by one who is friends with greedy people. Those who get rich by unjust means will pass their wealth to those who will actually be kind to the poor. Here, the suggestion is that the righteous inherit what the wicked gain, pointing ultimately to their inheriting the earth. God hates the prayers of those who ignore the law. Those leading the upright astray will fall into their own trap, but the blameless receive a good inheritance – presumably the eternal one. The discerning poor man sees through the rich man who considers himself wise. People are delighted when the righteous gain power, but hide when the wicked do, because of what it will mean. Those who hides their sins, presumably from God, doesn’t prosper, whilst those who confess receive his mercy, and with it blessing. Likewise, those who continue t fear the LORD are blessed, but those who start well but harden their hearts fall into trouble. A wicked man ruling helpless people is like a raging predator in the harm he will do. Tyrants lack judgement. Those who hate dishonest gain enjoy long life under God’s blessing. The murderer will be a fugitive until he dies, and should not be supported. If you work hard you will have abundant food, but if you chase dreams you will be poor. The faithful will be blessed, but those who are materialistic in desiring wealth will be punished, presumably because this will show itself in sin. It is not good to show partiality in court, but it can be acknowledged that the hungry will do wrong to provide for themselves. The stingy are eager to be rich, but unaware that they will be poor, presumably in punishment for their lack of generosity. In the end, those who rebuke others will receive more favour from others than flatterers, as people will see their integrity. Those who think it acceptable to steal from their parents partner those who destroy others, because this is to do evil. Greedy people stir up arguments, presumably over what they should have. Those who trust God for provision prosper. It is foolish to trust in oneself, and the wise will be kept safe, no doubt by God’s direct care but also as a consequence of their wisdom. Those who give to the poor will have all they need, but those who ignore them be cursed. The righteous thrive when the wicked perish.
            Some lessons from Proverbs 29: Those who remain stubborn after many rebukes will be suddenly destroyed. Again, this may be directly by God, or by consequence of their foolishness. People groan when the wicked rule. A friend of prostitutes squanders his wealth, presumably on them. A just ruler means a stable country, but one greedy for bribes to buy his will destroys it. Flattery spreads a net for one’s neighbour, perhaps by tempting him to pride or not confronting his sin. Evil men are caught by their own sin, but the righteous can rejoice in knowing that will not happen to them. The righteous care about justice for the poor, but the wicked don’t. Mocking people stir people up to rebellion, presumably by mocking the rulers. By contrast, the wise quell people’s anger and so bring peace. When a wise man goes to court against a fool, he can expect them to rage and scoff at the charges, with no peace. Bloodthirsty people hate and seek to kill the upright. Fools vent anger but the wise control theirs. If a ruler listens to lies, his officials become wicked, probably because they are tempted to lie to further their own ends. In grace God gives sight to both the poor and the oppressor. Fair rulers will be secure in their office. Disciplining a child brings wisdom, delighting and granting peace to his parents. But those not disciplined end up disgracing their parents. Sin thrives when the wicked do, but the righteous will see them fall, if not now, in the judgement. Without the revelations of the Old Testament prophets (today, God’s word in scripture taught) people cast off al restraint on their sin. But those who keep the law (God’s will) will be blessed. A servant needs more than words to be corrected – presumably discipline. There is more hope for fools than those who speak too quickly, probably because of the trouble they can get themselves into. If a man pampers his servant (employee?) he will bring him grief, presumably by taking advantage. The angry man causes arguments and commits many sins. Pride brings a man low, no doubt because he will make mistakes and sin against God. By contrast, the humble man is honoured, presumably because of his righteousness. The accomplice to a crime is his own worst enemy, because he will end up perjuring himself by refusing to testify. Fear of man in general is a snare as it causes people to sin. It is those who trust God who are kept safe. Many seek justice from rulers, but it is only from the LORD that justice is certain. The righteous hate the dishonest an dthe wicked hate the upright.

Praying it home:       
Praise God for whatever he has most brought home to you. Pray that he would help you live according to that wisdom.

Thinking further:                             
None today.

If you receive this post by email, visit and make a comment.


Post a Comment