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SIH’s Think On These Things: Proverbs 28:17-20

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SIH TOTT ICONHe layeth up sound wisdom for the righteous (Prov 2:7)

 

Our Relationship To The Law Of God: Selfishness Compared To Submission: Proverbs 28:17-20

17) A man that doeth violence to the blood of [any] person shall flee to the pit; let no man stay him.
18) Whoso walketh uprightly shall be saved: but [he that is] perverse [in his] ways shall fall at once.
19) He that tilleth his land shall have plenty of bread: but he that followeth after vain [persons] shall have poverty enough.
20) A faithful man shall abound with blessings: but he that maketh haste to be rich shall not be innocent.

In this chapter, Solomon directs our attention to having the proper relationship to the moral laws of the Lord (this would include the 10 commandments and the other manifold laws of God that are based upon His person and His character.  As such, these laws are in effect for all time periods and peoples…

EXPOSITION:

In this devotion, we will look at a comparison between those who submit to God’s laws and those who selfishly resist them…
 

17) A man that doeth violence to the blood of [any] person shall flee to the pit; let no man stay him.
Concerning rebellious, purposeful acts of sin…
1.  Someone who uses force to take the life of another shall flee from justice only to find himself in a place of harm.
2.  Let no one intervene to stop him from the punishment that awaits him.

Those who commit willful murder are meant to be judged severely and none should attempt to help him escape his punishment.  This is because he willfully chose to commit this murder, and in doing so, has willfully chosen to receive the justice he deserves.

The willful, unjust taking of the life of another is no small matter.  It is taking an image of God from this world and placing ourselves in the horrible position of deserving of physical death at the hands of our government.  This was breaking the sixth commandment…

Whoso sheddeth man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man.”  (Genesis 9:6)

Thou shalt not kill.”   (Exodus 20:13)

Keep in mind, the death penalty was given as a responsibility to man BEFORE the Ten Commandments were given.  It was later included as the sixth command of the 10 commandments.  This helps us to understand that the death penalty was not simply for the times of the Old Testament law.  It was a responsibility placed upon man from the very beginning of sins’ entrance into the world.  Because of this, it is wrong to try to explain away capital punishment by saying that it ended with the ending of the OT law.

However there remains much debate among Godly, devoted Christians as to the existence of the death penalty in New Testament times… there are good arguments for either side, however, there does seem to be ample evidence of its existence…

The Apostle Paul was willing to submit to it…. For if I be an offender, or have committed any thing worthy of death, I refuse not to die: but if there be none of these things whereof these accuse me, no man may deliver me unto them. I appeal unto Caesar.”   (Acts 25:11)

Paul taught that it would be the role of human governments… Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.  Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.  For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same:  For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to [execute] wrath upon him that doeth evil.  Wherefore [ye] must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake.”   (Romans 13:1-5)

The Apostle John made reference to it… He that leadeth into captivity shall go into captivity: he that killeth with the sword must be killed with the sword. Here is the patience and the faith of the saints.”   (Revelation 13:10)

All of which seem to allude to the continued existence of capital punishment as the appropriate punishment for murder.

 

18) Whoso walketh uprightly shall be saved: but [he that is] perverse [in his] ways shall fall at once.
Concerning lifestyles….
1.  The person whose lifestyle is upright and lawful shall be at peace with the Lord, not deserving of His judgment
2.  But he whose lifestyle is twisted and perverted shall certainly cast down

The person who is saved by the grace of God, with the indwelling spirit within him, will possess an upright lifestyle.  But the lost person, who is headed for judgment, will possess a lifestyle of rebellion and disobedience to the Lord.

But as for me, I will walk in mine integrity: redeem me, and be merciful unto me.”   (Psalms 26:11)

19) He that tilleth his land shall have plenty of bread: but he that followeth after vain [persons] shall have poverty enough.
Concerning material needs….
1.  He that properly prepares his field for planting will have an abundance of food
2.  But he that runs after worthless men will be lacking the necessities of life.

The person who follows the way of wisdom will work to meet his needs, while those who follow the examples of the rebellious will find themselves in great need.

Be thou diligent to know the state of thy flocks, [and] look well to thy herds.  For riches [are] not for ever: and doth the crown [endure] to every generation?  The hay appeareth, and the tender grass sheweth itself, and herbs of the mountains are gathered.  The lambs [are] for thy clothing, and the goats [are] the price of the field.  And [thou shalt have] goats’ milk enough for thy food, for the food of thy household, and [for] the maintenance for thy maidens.”   (Proverbs 27:23-27)

20) A faithful man shall abound with blessings: but he that maketh haste to be rich shall not be innocent.
Concerning faithfulness….
1.  A trustworthy man shall overflow with gracious gifts from the Lord.
2.  The man that presses himself to hurriedly accumulate earthy riches shall be guilty and awaiting punishment.

A man who is trustworthy in the things of the Lord will be spiritually and physically blessed of Him.  However, the man the devotes his life to gain physical wealth will be guilty of disobedience to the Lord and deserving of His punishing hand.

But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and [into] many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition.  For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.”  (1 Timothy 6:9-10)

SUMMARY:

When we live our lives lawfully, in submission to the will of the Lord, we can look forward to His manifold blessings in this life and the life to come.  However, when we become selfish and live unlawfully to gain satisfaction for our fleshly desires, we exchange the Lord’s punishment for His gracious blessings.

This principle applies to our rebellious, purposeful acts of sin; our lifestyles; the possession of our physical needs; and our faithfulness to the responsibilities He has given to us.

By God’s grace, let us all study these proverbs diligently, giving them the value that they deserve.

May the Lord bless us as we receive this sound wisdom and then “Think On These Things”.

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9 Comments

  1. Terry says:

    A very important message, thank you Rob

  2. gwennonr says:

    Another excellent and enlightening post. Thank you for writing it.

    • Rob Barkman says:

      Thanks for the kind words. Yes, the Proverbs contain a storehouse of wealth for the Christian! What a blessing it is to receive it from the hands of our Lord and Savior!

  3. SLIMJIM says:

    Thank you for this devotional

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