Archive for April 10th, 2019

Proverbs 24:17-25

In Proverbs 24:17-25 Solomon warns us not to be glad when someone we don’t like has an issue. Knowing this, we should not rejoice when one falls. It should not make our heart be glad. David did not rejoice when Saul died in battle. “Do not rejoice when your enemy falls, and let not your heart be glad when he stumbles, lest the Lord see it and be displeased, and turn away his anger from him.” If God sees our rejoicing over the fall of the wicked, He may turn away His wrath from the wicked man just to rebuke our proud, unloving heart against the wicked man.  We best not gloat over another man’s issues.

While God doesn’t want us to be glad when someone evil falls, he also tells us not to fear them. Garrett wrote “The translation ‘Do not fret’ is too mild. ‘Do not get yourself infuriated over evildoers’ is more accurate. Those who love the truth are naturally enraged by the effrontery of those who promote or practice godless behavior.” “Fret not yourself because of evildoers, and be not envious of the wicked, for the evil man has no future; the lamp of the wicked will be put out.” Death is waiting for the evil man both in this life and the next. Any good or pleasure they experience in this life is the best they will ever have or experience. The wicked man has no prospect for the future.

But Solomon does want us to fear God and avoid running with those who do not. Wisdom tells us to fear the LORD, but it is also wisdom to fear…the king. Earthly rulers deserve our respect and honor but we are to give heed to kings only in subordination to God, and not in those things which are contrary to the will and command of God “My son, fear the Lord and the king, and do not join with those who do otherwise, for disaster from them will rise suddenly, and who knows the ruin that will come from them both?” Those who want to overthrow or change the present system must take great care. The revolutionary often finds that their calamity will rise suddenly, and they can bring great ruin in their revolution.

Solomon continues to teach us the ways of the wise. Whether it is in the formal court of law or in daily interactions, we should never make judgment simply on the basis of partiality. Those like us can be wrong, and those different from us can be right. “These also are sayings of the wise. Partiality in judging is not good. Whoever says to the wicked, “You are in the right,” will be cursed by peoples, abhorred by nations, but those who rebuke the wicked will have delight, and a good blessing will come upon them.” Evil should be addressed and rebuked. We should not romanticize or excuse the wicked.

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