What Our Finances Say About Our Character

Proverbs 6 is one of those passages that illustrates how wonderfully practical this book is. The first part of the chapter deals with what to do when you find yourself caught up in bad debt. Solomon begins with a hypothetical situation: “My son, if thou be surety for thy friend, if thou hast stricken thy hand with a stranger…” (v. 1).

This hypothetical acknowledges the fact that even people who are purposely trying to live according to wisdom still “mess up.” It is Solomon’s hope that his son never runs afoul of his financial obligations, but he says to him: “In case you do, here’s what steps you need to take.”

We’re human. We’re finite. We are prone to error. We sin. Our character is revealed in how we deal with our failures. Continue reading

Stranger Danger

Who’s the bigger fool? The fool, or the fool who follows her? In the end, I guess it doesn’t matter because if they both continue in their way, they both will end up destroyed. In this passage Solomon deals with the “strange woman,” and the man who falls for her. Proverbs spends a lot of time dealing with the subject of strange women, not so much because woman are particularly evil, but because men are particularly lustful.
Continue reading

Are You Living on the Edge?

The story is told of a wealthy landowner back in the days of the horse and carriage who was looking to hire a driver. In order to get to one of his properties there was a very dangerous road the led up a mountain side. On one side of the road was the mountain, and on the other side was a sheer drop – and no guard rail. So, the man interviewed three drivers and asked them one key question: “On that mountain road, how close can you drive to the edge?” The first man said: “I can get to within a foot of the edge.” When the rich landowner asked the same question of his second candidate, the man boasted: “I can get right up on the edge and not even break a sweat.” Then the landowner interviewed his last candidate and asked him: “How close can you get me to the edge of that road?” The third man appeared shocked by the question. “How close?” he asked. “I’m going to hug the mountain and stay as far away from that edge as I can.” The rich man smiled and said: “You’re hired!”

Continue reading

If Only I Had…

How many times have you looked back on your life and thought: “If only I had done ____  life would have worked out so much differently for me!” Much of our lives are predicated on the big “If’s” we face.
Solomon sought to save his son a life of regrets and “If-only-I-had’s” in this second chapter of Proverbs. It opens with a fatherly admonition to heed sound counsel.
Continue reading

The Proverbs 31 Lady: The Real Wonder Woman

Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates. (Pro 31:31).

The Proverbs 31 Lady is the real Wonder Woman. She was strong. She had real power, and she is a good role model because she really did exist. And in Scripture she is not the exception, she’s the norm. The Bible has many examples of strong women: Deborah the prophetess, Sarah the wife of Abraham, and Zipporah the wife of Moses, to name a few. The Bible does not teach that women should be doormats and that their husbands are supposed to keep them in submission. From the very beginning God ordained that a wife should be a help meet (Genesis 2:18). That cannot happen if she is oppressed by an overbearing husband. It can only  happen in a relationship where the husband understands his wife’s God-given role and rejoices when she owns it. The Proverbs 31 Lady did just that and her husband was happy to see it happen.

 

To name a few of the things she did:

  • She consistently earned her husband’s trust (vv. 11-12).
  • She was industrious and even made family business and financial decisions (vv. 13-19, 24).
  • She was a blessing to those in need around her (v. 20).
  • She faithfully prepared for and met the needs of her family (v. 21).
  • She took care of herself and her appearance (v. 22).
  • Because of her reputation, her husband’s reputation was well-established (v. 23).
  • She maintained a godly testimony (vv. 25-27).
  • She enjoyed the fruits of her labors (vv. 28-31).

She was most definitely a strong and confident woman.

Every Word of God is Pure

“Every word of God is pure: he is a shield unto them that put their trust in him” (Proverbs 30:5).

“Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: yea, we establish the law”  (Romans 3:31).

When Paul made this statement in Romans, he was making it clear that faith in God’s grace did not make the law null and void, nor did it declare the law unworthy. It was the exact opposite. The law declared us unworthy and exposed our need of grace. By accepting God’s grace, we establish the fact that the law is pure in every way and that we are sinners in desperate need of a Savior.

Revelation illustrates it another way:

Revelation 10:9-10

(9)  And I went unto the angel, and said unto him, Give me the little book. And he said unto me, Take it, and eat it up; and it shall make thy belly bitter, but it shall be in thy mouth sweet as honey.

(10)  And I took the little book out of the angel’s hand, and ate it up; and it was in my mouth sweet as honey: and as soon as I had eaten it, my belly was bitter.

Why would God’s Word taste so sweet and at the same time be so bitter? Because God’s Word is wonderful. It’s just not always easy to take. That’s not an indictment of God’s Word. It’s an indictment of our own sinful nature. Every word of God is pure, even the words that condemn us because they establish the goodness and purity of God.

Monday Musings: Because God is Great and Good, He is Worthy of My Worship

prayerwithBibleEnter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.  (Psalms 100:4)

For the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.  (Psalms 100:5)

We can thank Him for His greatness because He is an all-powerful God in Whom we can place our full confidence. Continue reading