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Posts Tagged ‘Proverbs’

Where does wisdom come from?

May 1, 2011 Leave a comment

In the very first proverb, God sets the tone for the entire book with a purpose statement in verse 7: “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction.”

Do you fear the Lord?

If so, that is the very beginning of knowledge.

Fools (who say in their heart that there is no God according to Psalm 14:1) despise wisdom and instruction; in other words, they do not listen to advice! They do not heed warnings!

So, before you can even begin to dig into the knowledge and manifold wisdom of God, you must first fear Him. I heard a great preacher say that the fear of God is the fear that you might bring shame to His glorious reputation and Name by your sins; therefore, you would not choose to sin against God as a believer.

To fear God, one MUST be a Christian. No if’s and’s or but’s about it, you must be a Christian to fear the Lord God and to benefit from the manifold wisdom He offers in His Word.

So as we search through proverbs each day this month, the first thing to consider is: do you fear the Lord?

If so, then you will find wisdom more abundantly than silver and gold.

-Mark (“Lord, may I fear You above all other fears”)

May’s theme is a rhyme!

May 1, 2011 Leave a comment

Every month so far this year in 2011, we’ve matched letters. For example, January was Jesus month, February was Family month, March was Marriage month, and April was Answers month. Now, in May, there is no matching letter for the theme I want to do so I am just going to do a little rhyme. We want to look at the manifold wisdom of God in a little book He wrote called Proverbs! Each day, we will choose a proverb or two of the day to reflect upon. So, May is Proverb of the Day month!

What’s great about Proverbs is that there are 31 chapters so it’s perfect to sync one chapter with each day.

Billy Graham did this – he read a proverb for whatever day of the month it was – every day for most of his life. On the 1s, he read the 1st proverb and on the 2nd, the 2nd proverb – every day for every month of most of his life. No wonder he was so very wise! He was learning wisdom from God, the source of all true wisdom!

Let’s be like Billy this May as we deem this month: “May the Proverb of the Day” and let’s witness the Manifold Wisdom of God in Proverbs.”

-Mark (thankful for one of the most valuable books for biblical counselors, Proverbs)

Did Jesus fear the Lord?

December 5, 2010 1 comment

Fear of the Lord gets watered down anymore when people say, “Well, it doesn’t mean we fear the Lord but that we respect Him.” Not totally true. It does mean we respect Him AND it does mean we FEAR Him. There’s no way around it.

I did a word study on fear once trying to find it to be true that it was respect. Somehow I was thinking that was better than “fear.” Well, my studies told me that the word “fear” meant “fear.” Fear is fear. “Hmmm,” I thought, “Ok, it’s fear, Lord, so please put more of the fear of God in me.” That was my prayer.

Proverbs 9:10 says: “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight. AND Proverbs 1:7 says: “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction.”**

Wisdom is the doing of knowledge. It’s the “living it out” part and the application part of knowledge. To be wise is to be a doer. Jesus was the wisest man who ever lived.

So, did Jesus fear the Lord? In Luke 2:52, it says: “And Jesus increased in wisdom and in stature and in favor with God and man.”** Therefore, if He grew in wisdom, He first had to fear the Lord. His fear was not like ours – momentary outbursts of fear – but it was sustained throughout His life and was not sinful. But yes in a human sense, Jesus had to have feared the Lord since He submitted to the Father; therefore, you and I must fear Him and submit to Him, also.

Allistair Begg explained this concept of fear and I’ll paraphrase what I gleaned from him. He was commenting on Ecclesiastes 12:13-14: “The end of the matter; all has been heard. Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man. For God will bring every deed into judgment, with every secret thing, whether good or evil.” Begg said that life is not trivial or irrelevant since we are to fear God and keep His commandments. It’s not servile fear (which means harsh or cruel) which is the fear of what God might do to me since we are His children. Rather, it is fear of what I might do to Him when I sin and “shame” His glorious reputation.

Are you afraid that your actions might drag God’s reputation through the mud since people know you are a Christian? Then, you should fear Him and do what is right at all times, even when no one is looking!

Even the thief on the cross understood fearing God in Luke 23:39-43: “One of the criminals who were hanged railed at him, saying, “Are you not the Christ? Save yourself and us!” 40 But the other rebuked him, saying, “Do you not fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? 41 And we indeed justly, for we are receiving the due reward of our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong.” 42 And he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.” 43 And he said to him, “Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise.”

One thief never feared the Lord. The other one came to fear the Lord while on the cross and now he is with Jesus in heaven!

I’d say this is an important Christian concept not to lose sight of.

-Mark (praying and asking the Lord to put the fear of Him in me EVERY day)

**The Holy Bible : English standard version. 2001. Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.

Message that opposes the world’s message!

June 23, 2010 Leave a comment

Proverbs 28:26 tells us that “Whoever trusts in his own mind is a fool, but he who walks in wisdom will be delivered.”*

Is that a worldly message? No, because the world says “trust yourself” and “trust your feelings” and “you do what you think is right.” Well, my problem with that is, what if someone thinks it’s right to be a pedophile and they feel attracted to a young child by their “feelings”? Should they trust themselves, their feelings, and what they think is right?

No, of course not. And the Bible knows this to be true of unregenerated mankind!

In fact, the Bible gives us the “thing” to trust in – “wisdom” which only comes from God above and we get it from His Word and His Spirit.

So let’s think like God thinks and be like Christ who rejected the “worldly wisdom” offered Him in Matthew 4 by Satan and lived by God’s wisdom alone.

I think Christ did pretty well, don’t you?

-Mark (learning to walk in biblical wisdom by the power of the Holy Spirit daily)

*The Holy Bible : English standard version. 2001 (Pr 28:26). Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.

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September 6, 2009 1 comment

Proverbs 16:33 – The Sovereignty of God

February 17, 2009 Leave a comment

The lot is cast into the lap, but its every decision is from the Lord.” – The Holy Bible : English standard version. 2001 (electronic ed.) . Good News Publishers: Wheaton.

I’m so glad that He has power over all things like the “lots” (or dice) that are “cast”. We serve a BIG God Who loves us and means everything for our good (Rom. 8:28). Does He allow hardships to surface in our lives? Yes, but always with the purpose to bring glory to His name and to bring spiritual growth into our lives.

With God for us, who can be against us? Why do we fear man or Satan or this world?  Why? Fear not for He is with you and in you!

Obviously, He has power over the little things in your life and you can trust Him to make good “decisions” for you especially when the dice are cast.

-Mark (thankful to serve a sovereign God)

Some Nuts Are Hard To Crack (Part 1)

January 26, 2009 Leave a comment

Below is part one of a two part excerpt from a daily encouragement email I receive regarding standing for lost loved ones and prodigal spouses.  Charlyne Cares can be subscribed to by visiting their site at www.rejoiceministries.org

 

 

As I prepared for a devotional for our ladies group, God gave me
the phrase, “Some nuts are hard to crack.”  Think about that.  If
you take a bowl of mixed nuts and a nutcracker, some nuts crack
open with very little pressure and come out in one piece.  Others
take more pressure and the nut usually has to be pried out of the
shell in pieces. The macadamia nut is said to have the hardest
shell of any nut.  It takes 300 pounds of pressure per square
inch
to crack it open.  It also takes much practice and skill to
apply just the right amount of pressure so the nut comes out
whole instead of smashed to smithereens!  They even make a
special device just for macadamias…a cup-shaped tool with a small
indented hole just the right size to fit the macadamia and a
special hammer to hit it with. 

People can be a little like those nuts.  They can have a hard
shell that keeps them from a relationship with God.  The shell is
so tough that sometimes it seems there’s no way to penetrate
through it.  The good news is, you are not the nutcracker!  God
is the divine nutcracker.  He alone is able to penetrate that
wall.   

When a person is being held captive by satan, when they are
allowing sin in their life and turning from God, a hardness
surrounds their heart.  They develop a wall as thick as the wall
of Jericho and as hard and tough as a macadamia shell.  It’s easy
to look at a person like this and think they will never change.
There is no way to crack through that hard shell.  But that’s not
what God says!  He says in Proverbs 16:9 that even though a man
decides the path he takes, God directs his steps.  He is always
putting things in their path to get them back on the right track.

PART TWO WILL BE POSTED TUESDAY..

 

-Jason (Thankful God cracked my nut!)