Archive for September, 2010

Proverbs 13:24-25

verse 24: “He who spares his rod hates his son, But he who loves him disciplines him diligently.”

When my wife and I first became parents, my mother was over at the house helping us out. Among some of the topics of conversation was the choice of disciplinary tools. In short, why did she and Daddy use a switch to punish us? My wife’s father had used a belt, and I had heard of other devices by other parents to enforce discipline. So why a switch? (for the uneducated, the switch was a short, sappy limb of a small bush with leaves. Strip the leaves and the little rod had little notches where the leaves had been, and they sting!)

She told us it would sting; it would leave a mark only briefly that went away, so no permanent damage; and it would get our attention (which it did!) They did that to show us that there were physical consequences to breaking the rules. They also did this to train us in growing up, because they loved us. What if there were no consequences to doing wrong? Would you quit doing wrong?

Now, this is NOT an endorsement of child abuse…that is plain wrong! But loving discipline is necessary when training up a child.

Something to think about.


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verse 22: “A good man leaves an inheritance to his children’s children, And the wealth of the sinner is stored up for the righteous.”

In A Christmas Carol, Ebenezer Scrooge gets a glimpse of his future, unaltered at the time of the present. He sees himself dead and gone, friendless and not fondly remembered. And his wealth, that he worked so painstakingly hard to hoard? It’s divvied up among the usual suspects; even scroungers like his washer-woman and other servants taking his sheets and silverware.

The Holman concordance on Proverbs makes an interesting statement about this verse on page 279: “But even when the godly do not have great material wealth, they can always pass down a spiritual inheritance that is even more important.” It can be interesting to see what people do with inherited wealth, especially if that inheritance is not from the last generation, but the one before that one. All well-meaning parents want to work hard to provide for their children; we should work as hard not just to pass on material wealth to following generations, but a spiritual inheritance even more so.

Back to A Christmas Carol…Scrooge did change his ways, and one of the scenes I’ll always remember is him not only being a better friend and employer to Bob Cratchit, but to his children, Tiny Tim especially. My grandmother often talks fondly of my grandfather (who passed away shortly after I was born); she tells me of good traits I have that remind her of him. If you have children, take a moment to think of what you want them to be or to have when they grow up. Is one of those things you want for them….to be good parents themselves? How do you want to be remembered…by your grandchildren?

Something to think about.

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Thanks to any and all for your prayers; God has led me through some beautiful revelations in the last 2 days, culminating in the hiatus being over! My work difficulties are still there and will have to be dealt with, but I cannot stay away from His Word!

verse 20: “He who walks with wise men will be wise, But the companion of fools will suffer harm.”

Two observations here: we as human beings often equate wisdom with age or experiences. That’s not always true. I do know some wise old people and some foolish young people. I also know some foolish old people and some wise young ones! As far as experiences go, well, there are some habitual criminals who aren’t any wiser from repeated offenses and punishment in our prisons.
If you are open to the counsel of wise people, it can be very hard not to grow in wisdom as well.

I have a friend, a fellow parent, with a son in trouble with the law. Unfortunately, from what the parent told me, the son was just in the car with his “friends”…when they decided to rob a gas station. I still need to keep praying for my friend, for his son is of legal age, and therefore responsible for his actions. In this case, that son was a “companion of fools”, and is suffering consequences from his associations.

There is a Friend Who wants us to walk with Him, and His wisdom is vast; read of the encounters Jesus had with the religious leaders in the gospels, and you’ll see He is much better company to keep!

Have a blessed day!

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Temporary hiatus

My brothers and sisters who view this blog,

It is with deep regret that I inform you that I’ll have to take a short hiatus from the Bible blog for the interim. I have some work stresses in my job that I’m having to deal with for the immediate future. I’d covet your prayers, as I intend to start back up, hopefully in November.

Thank you.

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verse 19: “Desire realized is sweet to the soul, But it is an abomination to fools to depart from evil.”

I had a very pleasant dream the other night. In it, I dreamed I was the drum major leading a marching band into a performance. Now, that may not seem like much of a dream to some of you…but I never got to be drum major when I was in band. In high school, our band was so small, not only was I the only trombone player…I WAS the low brass section (we had no baritones, no tubas). My band director told me that he’d be glad to make me the drum major…but then, we’d have no low brass in the band. I tried out while in college band, but competition was fierce there, and I didn’t get it; one of my best friends did. He did a great job, but like most of us, I would wonder “what if that was me…”.

I awoke from that dream feeling happy; it’s rare when you have a dream that makes you feel that happy. Solomon wrote that “desire realized is sweet to the soul”. I have a footnote in my Ryrie Bible that comments on the second half of that verse. Desire realized is sweet…but what if you had to give something up to attain it? The footnote says that fools will not give up their evil ways even to attain such desires. Most of us, in pursuit of a goal or dream, do make sacrifices. But Solomon is saying that fools would rather cling to their evil ways than give them up to attain desires. That’s sad.

You know, all Jesus asks of us is to accept Him as Lord and Savior of our lives. We just have to ask forgiveness and to repent of our sins. It can be hard to repent and give up that sinful life…but, oh, what a desire realized!

Have a blessed day!

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verse 13: “The one who despises the word will be in debt to it, But the one who fears the commandment will be rewarded.”

As I look back during the time that I officiated high school football, I remember with bemusement some of the reactions of some coaches to the rules. There were always those who argued against the calls that went against their team no matter what…yet these same coaches would be cheering us when the same rule was used in a call against the other team! There were some occasions where the team’s busted play for no gain would actually be saved due to a flag that was thrown on the play.

My Holman concordance makes reference to the fact that those who abide by the law (e.g., those coaches who abide by the rules) will benefit and be rewarded by their obedience; yet those who do not (e.g., coaches who ignore or scorn such rules) will pay the penalty, because they will still be in debt to the law.

To quote an old clichĂ©, “the law is the law”, and that certainly applies to God’s law. As Christians, we are guilty of sin…but we have an Advocate in Jesus Christ. By His blood, our sins are forgiven; our penalty has been served by Him.

Have a blessed day!

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Proverbs 13:9-12

verse 9: “The light of the righteous rejoices, But the lamp of the wicked goes out.”

Ever had a light go out on you? Especially if it’s your flashlight during a power outage…one moment you’re secure in the fact that you can see even in the darkness, and the next….you freeze, trying to remember where everything was as you slowly try to move forward, bumping into stuff…and hoping that the fuzzy object you feel with your bare feet IS the pet cat! 🙂

We take light for granted. The light of the righteous is one that burns brightly (merrily as the Holman concordance makes reference to it). But the lamp of the wicked will eventually go out…leaving them in darkness that is far from secure.

So, Christian….are you letting your light burn brightly today?

Have a blessed day!

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Proverbs 13:8

verse 8: “The ransom of a man’s life is his riches, But the poor hears no rebuke.”

I never saw all of Rocky V, but I remember seeing the ending. The plot of the movie wove around Rocky’s life after Rocky IV; retired from the ring, brain damage due to accumulated blows to the head, having lost much of his fortune. He was mentoring a promising young boxer, but the young man fell under the influence of a corrupt promoter named Duke. The climatic scene had Rocky and his young protĂ©gĂ© in a bare-knuckled street fight, with Rocky coming out the victor (surprised?) Duke kept needling Rocky during the whole confrontation, but anytime Rocky made a move toward him, he’d pull the “rich man’s excuse”: “touch me and I’ll sue!”. After Rocky defeated his traitorous protĂ©gĂ©, Duke kept trying to get the last word. Finally, looking around at his neighbors and his wife who had witnessed the fight, Rocky hears Duke say one more time, “touch me and I’ll sue, heh, heh, heh.”….as Rocky suddenly punches Duke with a roundhouse fist to the gut! Surprised, doubled over, gasping for air, Duke looks up as Rocky says right back to him: “Sue me for what?”, as he walks off with Adrian on his arm and the neighborhood cheering.

I have a footnote about this verse in my Ryrie Bible: “A rich man may have to buy off his life while a poor man can ignore a threat.” The rich and wealthy tend to trust in their riches and status. The poor do not put their trust in such materialistic things. In most cases, fictional and real, it’s not the poor who get taken hostage for ransom, but the rich who have the means to pay such ransom. Satan is the biggest hostage-taker of all; he has throngs of people captive to sin. Only one person could pay that ransom. Jesus. And He did.

A couple more verses that my wife and I thought of:
Matthew 16:26: “For what will a man be profited, if he gains the whole world, and forfeits his soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?”

Matthew 10:28: “And do not fear those who kill the body, but are unable to kill the soul; but rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.”

Something to think about.

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verse 7: “There is one who pretends to be rich, but has nothing; Another pretends to be poor, but has great wealth.”

There is a commercial I have seen on television that shows a family man living the good life; he has a nice house and yard, nice car, luxuries, etc. He’s telling the viewer about what he and his family have and how they enjoy it. The “kicker” comes when he, still smiling, says, “and how did I afford all this? I’m maxed out to my eyeballs in credit right now!” Still smiling deliriously, he’s riding his lawn tractor, cutting his plush yard, saying, “somebody please stop me!” The commercial, as it turns out, is for one of those debt-relief businesses.

Keeping up with the Joneses. Living a life you cannot afford. Our society is very guilty of that nowadays. With the recent advent of credit cards and seeing how “the better half” lives on television and entertainment reports, some people think they can live like the rich, when they’re not rich! On the other hand, there are some, especially the World War II generation, who live frugally. I always wondered how my grandmother was able to give so much; turns out she had wisely saved and lives frugally (note here, frugal doesn’t always mean cheap!). She lives within her means, and trusts God for the rest.

God is the Great Provider, but He doesn’t want us to squander what we got and what we get! We need to be good stewards of what God gives us; after all, we truly own nothing…it comes from God anyway! Another marketing clichĂ© I’ve heard is “free stuff is good!” Well, you know what’s free? The gift of salvation Jesus gives us; all we have to do is accept it. After all, Jesus paid our sin debt…a debt we could never repay!

Something to think about!

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