Insights from Proverbs 18

strong tower

Insights from Proverbs 18 for the 18th:

“The name of the Lord is a strong tower; The righteous run to it & are safe (v.10).”

I have become increasingly sensitive to taking the Lord’s name in vain. Our culture is so flippant with OMG. Its like nails on a chalkboard to me. The name of the Lord is important. It’s a strong tower. We run to it. It protects it. Let us not become callous to it’s misuse.

“Death & life are in the power of the tongue, And those who love it will eat its fruit (v.21).”

We can speak life or speak death. That is tremendous power. More than we know. Be extremely cautious with that responsibility.

“He who finds a wife finds a good thing, And obtains favor from the Lord (v.22).”

A good thing is a God thing. Robert Morris tells the story of a man who called his wife, “Good thing.” She was his good thing from the Lord. If you have found your good thing, thank the Lord & do your best to let her know how much you appreciate her. If you’ve yet to find your good thing, serve the Lord until you do. Then serve the Lord together.

My Good thing is the best thing that ever happened to me.

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Insights from Proverbs 6

hot coals

Insights from Proverbs 6 for the 6th:

Verses 16-19 is where we get the “7 Deadly Sins” (Pride, Envy, Gluttony, Lust, Anger, Greed, & Sloth). Although that exact phrase is not specifically used (it was actually coined by a 4th Century monk) and those specific sins are not exactly listed, here is where the basic idea comes from.

There are 6 things the Lord hates, 7 that He detests:

  • haughty eyes (arrogance)
  • a lying tongue
  • hands that shed innocent blood
  • a heart that devises wicked schemes
  • feet that are quick to rush into evil
  • a false witness who pours out lies
  • and a person who stirs up conflict in the community

“Detests” is a pretty serious word choice: He abhors them. What do you think? Maybe write these down and avoid them.

Solomon bookends these abominations with warnings against Folly & even more warnings against Adultery: these are 2 recurring snares when it comes to humanity. Could it be that he’s trying to tell us something?

He gives some absurd examples: If you put flames on your lap, don’t be surprised when your pants are on fire. If you walk across hot coals, don’t be surprised when your feet get scorched. The same goes with sleeping with another’s spouse; there are going to be consequences and they are going to hurt.

Jealousy makes everyone crazy. When they find out about the affair: they’re gonna flip out. Nothing will stop them.

Common sense, right? Solomon says the one who commits adultery has no sense.

I’ve heard the statistic that 50% of marriages end in divorce. The most common reason is infidelity. I’m not sure if that stat is true, but I do know that this is true: marriage is under attack! The enemy wants us to believe that marriage isn’t important, its not sacred, and we don’t need to be good stewards of the family God has entrusted to us.

The opposite is actually true! Husbands, keep your marriage sacred! Protect it! Be ever-diligent!

The enemy is setting specially-designed traps just for you and me.

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Ref: http://www.bibleinfo.com/en/questions/what-are-seven-deadly-sins

Insights from Proverbs 5

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Insights from Proverbs 5 for the 5th:

I can sum up Prov. 5 in 5 words: Keep it in your pants.

If you would like to…

  • Not drink poison?
  • Not get sliced up by a sword?
  • Not wander aimlessly?
  • Not give away your hard-earned $$$?
  • Not let your hard-work enrich someone else?
  • Not lose your honor & dignity?
  • Not groan & mourn?
  • DODGE TOTAL RUIN?

Then, keep it in your pants.

Drink from your own cistern. Let that wellspring be yours alone. Never share it with strangers.

“But since sexual immorality is occurring, each man should have sexual relations with his own wife, and each woman with her own husband. The husband should fulfill his marital duty to his wife, and likewise the wife to her husband.” – 1 Cor. 7:2-3

Common sense, right?

Never be intoxicated with another man’s wife. Never embrace a seductress. Doing so is equal to cozying up to a mousetrap, or snuggling a live grenade. It will not end well. In great folly, you are led astray and death surely follows.

A healthy marriage is centered on Jesus, rooted in trust, and grows in love. Of course there are ups & downs, but weathering the storms together draws us closer. Protect your marriage. Don’t take it for granted. Honor your spouse. Don’t take them for granted.

The greatest thing a Dad can do for his children is to love, respect, and cherish their Mom.

Great stuff. Extremely practical. Very simple. All my favorites.

[Bonus: If you think the Bible is boring, read verse 19.]

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Porn & Purity

A-covenant-with-my-eyes

Pornography is an epidemic today. EPIDEMIC; I don’t use that word lightly or in hyperbole. It is a flat-out plague! I would say porn is the “leprosy” of our times. It is contagious, infectious, and poisonous. It leaves festering DEATH & DESTRUCTION in its vile wake; the death of marriages, the death of families, and the death of life.

The age at which a child can be exposed to porn is UNSPEAKABLY young; as early as 6 or 7! Temptation is constantly & conveniently just one click away. Snares are readily available now more than ever. In fact, they are in your very pocket. That is why it is absolutely vital to stand for purity and dig deeper into God’s word. 

MAKE PURITY A PRIORITY!

“If you do not stand firm in your faith, you will not stand at all.” – Isa. 7:9 (NIV)

Lust has always run rampant, but today it is in a dead-on sprint (Gal. 5:19-21).

Gentlemen, it is time to MAN UP!

  • Honor your Lord (Rom. 13:14).
  • Honor your wife (Heb. 13:4).
  • Honor your children (Phil. 4:8).

Ladies, pray for your man!

One verse has served me well in this area:

“I made a covenant with my eyes not to look lustfully at a young woman.” – Job 31:1

Is it worth losing your family, your career, or your self-respect over one moment? Guilt and shame make for terrible bedfellows.

So, what’s the solution?

How can a young person stay on the path of purity? By living according to your word. – Psa. 119:9

Want to live a pure life? Live it according to God, not man. God’s ways are the best ways. Do you know them? Stepping outside of His ways ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS involves negative consequences.

  • He isn’t about withholding “good things” from you.
  • He is about withholding BAD THINGS from you!
  • Do you believe that?

Want a pure life? Live according to God’s word – this will help you REGRET-PROOF your future.

Jesus said in Matthew 5:28-29 that anyone who looks lustfully has committed adultery in their heart. That’s a convicting verse. Jesus is looking from the inside out. My advice: Give your heart to Him because you and I are just going to foul it up.

Job made a covenant with his eyes. Make that same covenant, won’t you? Pray for us all.

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Do We Even Need a Code of Ethics?

code of ethics banner  - word abstract in letterpress wood typeThere is a recent (and warranted) outcry over moral failure. Every day someone new is ousted. Sometimes it is shocking (Matt Lauer). Sometimes it is not so shocking (Harvey Weinstein). In either case, this is nothing new. When mankind refuses to heed commonsense ethics, shrugs their shoulders at solid Biblical teaching, and stops their ears so they cannot hear the words of Jesus, then disaster inevitably and forcibly follows… and great is the fall of it (Matt. 7:24).

Imagine this (if you can!), Mr. Lauer or Mr. Weinstein there wakes up one morning and immediately opens God’s word. He comes across one of the many codes of ethics therein. For example:

Thus says the Lord of hosts: ‘Execute true justice, Show mercy and compassion everyone to his brother. 10 Do not oppress the widow or the fatherless, the alien or the poor. Let none of you plan evil in his heart against his brother.’ – Zech. 7:9-10

Makes sense, right? Pretty simple, I think:

1. Be fair. 2. Play nice. 3. Hug, don’t hit. 4. Help, don’t hurt.

(Funny, we say the same thing to our girls… who are only 4 and 2 by the way).

Then he starts his day. Do you think his day will be different? Do you think his life will be changed? Do you think his decisions would be more enlightened? Oh, I know that they would. Because you cannot encounter the Living God and walk away the same. You cannot meet with Yahweh every morning and then go out and sin (1 John 3:6). It just doesn’t work that way.

Instead, we get more and more people acting the way Zechariah’s audience acted:

11 But they refused to heed, shrugged their shoulders, and stopped their ears so that they could not hear. (7:11)

If we do like they did, “make our hearts like flint” and don’t heed God’s word, then we will face exactly what they faced: great wrath (7:12).

If you are reading this, there is still hope. Every second is an opportunity that God is freely giving to you so you can turn to Him. Isn’t that awesome? Don’t waste it.