What is your greatest fear? Would you be able to bear it if it came to pass?
What about your greatest desire? Does it honour God?
Everyone has fears and desires, but what defines them is your foundation. As in, where you stand with God.
When Proverbs speaks of the righteous/wicked man, the comparisons are always polar opposites, such as desire/fear. In these next two proverbs we will see examples of this.
What would a wicked man fear? Probably his sin being discovered, losing all fame and wealth, and ultimately death. He knows life is finite and so fills it with things to distract and entertain him from the reality of dying. 10 out of 10 people die, and the man who does not trust in God will face his Maker and stand trial for his deeds.
The righteous man, too, knows he is going to die, but for him God’s promises are sure and if he trusts alone in Jesus and repents of his sins, he will rather desire God. He will not fear the transition of death, but will want to be with his Saviour in Heaven.
A man who is following God has the right priorities in life, and so gets the blessings he asks of God.
It’s all about foundations. This proverb is talking of the surety of trusting in God, and giving the example of a twister that tears through town (five word ‘t’ combo!). It calls to mind what Jesus said in Matthew 7 about acting on His words.
A man who relies on his wealth and house and security guards for his safety will find that none of his foundations stand up to circumstances beyond his control. We can’t control natural disasters, disease, or accidents, and a reliance on finite things will, without fail, always result in destruction. What is your foundation in this unstable and unpredictable world?
Having just chugged down some vinegar to test this proverb, and having copped a lot of smoke in my eyes in the past, I can say for sure these things are not pleasant in the least! Smoke is just not compatible with our moist and sensitive eyes, and drinking vinegar just made me cough and splutter and wonder if I was doing permanent damage to my teeth.
So that is what it’s like sending a lazy man to do a job! Will he do the job? If he does, it will take him a long time or he will do very shoddy work. That would mean you’d have to deal with upset clients and might have to redo the work.
Seriously, there can’t be much worse a situation where you promise a good job and have to come back and fix up something left by that ‘lazy bottom’ you hoped would do. Walking into that “finished” job would be like walking into a smoke-filled room, sipping strong vinegar. Sounds terrific.
It would be far better to employ someone who is going to be diligent with their work and be thoughtful to the desires of the client.
Why does Solomon have to tell us super practical things we already should know!? It’s worth obeying, that’s why. I still have after-taste of that vinegar and it’s disgusting! I should have taken it for granted that it would taste bad. Hmm.
Thoughts or questions? Write them down in the comment section below!
Note: All scripture is taken from Bible Gateway and is the New King James Version. I am using a commentary by John Kitchen for help with difficult concepts and words.