DAY 21 - 31 DAYS OF PROVERBS!
Read Proverbs 21
I read Proverbs 21 in the New Living Translation, Amplified Classic and Message.
My thoughts on Proverbs 21:
The kings, the rulers, heart is in God's hands and uses them for His purpose. You see this throughout the Old Testament. Two come to mind, Pharoah and Cyrus. No matter what it looks like God's Word is truth and will come to pass.
Sometimes we only see from our perspective and think we are right. The Lord examines the heart seeing the hidden motives, things we are at times unaware of or just don't want seen.
God wants our hearts and motives to be right and just than He wants our sacrifices. "Samuel said, Has the Lord as great a delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams." (1 Samuel 15:22 AMPC)
Hasty decisions and lack of planning can lead to want, poverty. Want - machçôwr, deficiency; hence, impoverishment: —lack, need, penury, poor, poverty, want. (Strong's H4270)
The wicked love and crave trouble. You will get no mercy from them. Avoid them.
The wise learn from instruction. "Wise men and women are always learning, always listening for fresh insights." (Proverbs 18:15 MSG) "The wise also will hear and increase in learning, and the person of understanding will acquire skill and attain to sound counsel [so that he may be able to steer his course rightly]." (Proverbs 1:5 AMPC)
Be concerned about, and help, the poor. You don't want to be ignored in your time of need. "He who has pity on the poor lends to the Lord, and that which he has given He will repay to him." (Proverbs 19:17 AMPC)
The godly love justice while evil doers fear it. "For civil authorities are not a terror to [people of] good conduct, but to [those of] bad behavior. Would you have no dread of him who is in authority? Then do what is right and you will receive his approval and commendation." (Romans 13:3 AMPC)
Wandering from commonsense, understanding, will end up in death. "The lips of the [uncompromisingly] righteous feed and guide many, but fools die for want of understanding and heart.: (Proverbs 10:21 AMPC) Understanding - sâkal, to be (causatively, make or act) circumspect and hence, intelligent: —consider, expert, instruct, prosper, (deal) prudent(-ly), (give) skill(-ful), have good success, teach, (have, make to) understand(-ing), wisdom, (be, behave self, consider, make) wise(-ly), guide wittingly (Strong's H7919)
Loving pleasure, wine, and luxury more than anything else leads to poverty. "You’re addicted to thrills? What an empty life! The pursuit of pleasure is never satisfied." (Proverbs 21:17 MSG)
The wicked will fall into the traps and pits they've dug for the good. "Whoever digs a pit [for another man’s feet] shall fall into it himself, and he who rolls a stone [up a height to do mischief], it will return upon him." (Proverbs 26:27 AMPC) "Malice backfires; spite boomerangs." (Proverbs 26:27 MSG)
It's wisdom to save and not spend everything. Beware of impulse and emotional buying.
The pursuit of righteousness and love leads to life, righteousness, and honor. "But first and most importantly seek (aim at, strive after) His kingdom and His righteousness [His way of doing and being right—the attitude and character of God], and all these things will be given to you also." (Matthew 6:33 AMP) "But you, Timothy, are a man of God; so run from all these evil things. Pursue righteousness and a godly life, along with faith, love, perseverance, and gentleness." (1 Timothy 6:11 NLT)
Be careful about, literally guard, what you say, and you will stay out of trouble. Proverbs has a lot to say about our words and we should apply this wisdom to our daily conversations. Let this be your prayer: "Set a guard, O Lord, before my mouth; keep watch at the door of my lips." (Psalm 141:3 AMPC)
Being lazy will cause ruin. "The appetite of the sluggard craves and gets nothing, but the appetite of the diligent is abundantly supplied." (Proverbs 13:4 AMPC) "He becomes poor who works with a slack and idle hand, but the hand of the diligent makes rich." (Proverbs 10:4 AMPC)
The godly love to give. Giving is the heart of God and as His disciples it should be our heart. "For God so greatly loved and dearly prized the world that He [even] gave up His only begotten (unique) Son, so that whoever believes in (trusts in, clings to, relies on) Him shall not perish (come to destruction, be lost) but have eternal (everlasting) life. For God did not send the Son into the world in order to judge (to reject, to condemn, to pass sentence on) the world, but that the world might find salvation and be made safe and sound through Him." (John 3:16-17 AMPC)
Think before you act. Wise people think before they act; fools don’t—and even brag about their foolishness." (Proverbs 13:16 NLT)
The verse that spoke to me:
"Haughty eyes, a proud heart, and evil actions are all sin." (Proverbs 21:4 NLT)
"Haughty and arrogant eyes and a proud heart, the lamp of the wicked [their self-centered pride], is sin [in the eyes of God]." (Proverbs 21:4 AMP)
Haughty - Proud and disdainful; having a high opinion of one's self, with some contempt for others; lofty and arrogant; supercilious; Proceeding from excessive pride, or pride mingled with contempt; manifesting pride and disdain; (Noah Webster 1828 Dictionary)
Pride - Inordinate self-esteem; an unreasonable conceit of one's own superiority in talents, beauty, wealth, accomplishments, rank or elevation in office, which manifests itself in lofty airs, distance, reserve, and often in contempt of others; Insolence; rude treatment of others (Noah Webster 1828 Dictionary)
Evil - Evil is natural or moral. Natural evil is anything which produces pain, distress, loss or calamity, or which in any way disturbs the peace, impairs the happiness, or destroys the perfection of natural beings. Moral evil is any deviation of a moral agent from the rules of conduct prescribed to him by God, or by legitimate human authority; or it is any violation of the plain principles of justice and rectitude. (Noah Webster 1828 Dictionary)
This Scripture spoke to me because it reminded me of the seven things God hates and three of them are included in this Scripture!
"These six things the Lord hates, indeed, seven are an abomination to Him: A proud look [the spirit that makes one overestimate himself and underestimate others], a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, A heart that manufactures wicked thoughts and plans, feet that are swift in running to evil, A false witness who breathes out lies [even under oath], and he who sows discord among his brethren." (Proverbs 6:16-19 AMPC)
At times we want to skip over the hard Scriptures that may shine a light on what's deep in the crevices of our heart. It's good to take a reflective look at these things and see where we have opportunities for growth and also to see how far we have grown. We should be continually growing as we spend time in the Presence of God and in His Word and it should be reflected in how we interact with others.
I had to dig deeper and look at the definitions of haughty, proud, and evil. I wanted to make sure I fully understood these words. Not knowing could cause me to think I'm not when I am or to think I am when I'm not.
Full transparency here, I have been haughty and proud at times in my life and I'm thankful that the more I walk with Jesus, studying His Word, the more I grow.
On the other hand, I didn't want to think I'm evil or acted evilly yet; the definition says anything that produces pain, distress loss, or calamity, or disturbs the peace, etc. are defined as evil. Sadly, I've caused these things in others and in myself during my lifetime. Thankfully, I've been redeemed and made new. The key is to make sure I don't walk in these things now.
I'm reminded that I am a new creation in Christ, old things have passed away. When I ask for forgiveness, He's faithful and just to cleanse me from all unrighteousness and will forgive me. As His child there is no condemnation. And praise God He gives new mercies every day. (See 2 Corinthians 5:17, 1 John 1:9, Romans 8:1, and Lamentations 3:22-23)
Everything is covered under the blood and forgiven when I've repented for thoughts, words, and actions that don't align with the Word of God and who I am in Christ. The same is true for you. If you see where you've fallen short, which we all do, take it to the Lord, repent and let Him clean you up! He loves us with an everlasting and unconditional love.
"So repent (change your mind and purpose); turn around and return [to God], that your sins may be erased (blotted out, wiped clean), that times of refreshing (of recovering from the effects of heat, of [a]reviving with fresh air) may come from the presence of the Lord; And that He may send [to you] the Christ (the Messiah), Who before was designated and appointed for you—even Jesus," (Acts 3:19-20 AMPC)
I don't want to take anything for granted. I want to end this devotion asking each of my friends, or anyone reading this post, do you know Jesus personally as Savior and have you made Him Lord of your life? If you don't, I would love to introduce you to Him. Please don't take this lightly because there is an eternity, and we will spend it either in heaven or in hell. That's the truth. Don't be deceived by the rhetoric of good works will get you in or everyone is going to heaven. It's just not true. Jesus is the only way in.
Email me if you would like me to introduce you to Him or if you have questions about salvation.
Pray Psalm 51 and ask God to cleanse you from sin and unrighteousness in your life.
Lord, let Your Kingdom come, and Your will be done on earth, as it is in heaven, through me.
Share in the comments what verse spoke to you and why. Let's grow in wisdom together.
Be Encouraged! ❤