Hey, it’s been a while. We’ve been pretty busy. I apologize for not posting, but I’m going to try to start posting every Wednesday, since every day obviously isn’t working for me.
Look at verse 1: “Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring.” I see this not only as the usual explanation, but in a different way. Look at the word “boast” and the line “what a day may bring”. I think this also refers to your wealth, business, success, and importance in life. We may brag about going on a cruise in the Caribbean, but who knows what might happen that will prevent that? Matthew Henry states: “We know not what a day may bring forth. This does not forbid preparing for tomorrow, but presuming upon tomorrow. We must not put off the great work of conversion, that one thing needful.”
Look at 2: “Let someone else praise you, and not your own mouth; an outsider, and not your own lips.” This is basically saying not to bring up your diligent efforts and successes. Let others do that. And don’t trick them into it, either.
Here’s 6: “Wounds from a friend can be trusted, but an enemy multiplies kisses.” “Wounds” in this sense is referring to correction, I believe. Even though the correction might not be what you want to hear, if you choose your friends wisely, then their counsel should be correct normally. They can still mess up, but it’s a lot better. But the wicked encourage you – exactly what you want! But once they have you inside their snare, you’re in, and they remove the mask.
Let’s go over to 12: “The prudent see danger and take refuge, but the simple keep going and pay the penalty.” Like the saying “Turn around, don’t drown”, the prudent see the flood ahead and know to turn around.
I think this also has something to do with Salvation. The Prudent looks ahead and sees hell. They also see heaven. Meanwhile, the simple sits consumed in the present, not concerned about “later”. The prudent man makes the right choice. “But the simple keep going and pay the penalty.”
17: “As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” I think this is a crucial verse to us believers. There are two angles I want to come in at on this verse, so here’s the first: watch who you hang out with. Pick your friends carefully. If you get friends who won’t influence you in a godly manner, you shouldn’t call them friends, meaning you shouldn’t be with them 24/7. You should have friends who encourage your spiritual growth. Now, am I saying to put up blinders against your worldly “friends”? No, not necessarily. But if you see that you’re being changed by them with negative results, I would get away from them. Here’s my second angle: Let’s say my friend Ray is struggling. His life is weighed down by everything it seems. They’re moving, he had quit his job, and he’s leaving all his friends. I have two choices: 1.) to sit around and mope because Ray is moving and I might not see him again, or 2.) encourage him. Build him up. Tell him, “Hey, sure you’re moving, but look – you get the chance to have more time with your family, you’ve already been offered a better job, and you can still keep in touch with your friends here!” Hopefully, your positive thinking and attitude will rub off on him, and he’ll get a better mindset.
This is what we need to do as Christians. If you see a fellow brother or sister in Christ at a standstill in their walk and or growth in Christ, do what you can to encourage their growth.
Look at 19: “As water reflects the face, so one’s life reflects the heart.” Let’s line a couple of people up. Let’s put Isaac Newton and Adolf Hitler side-by-side. Now, let’s look at their lives: Isaac Newton, Christian, scientist, chemist, astronomer. He wrote Philosiphaie Naturalis Principia Mathematica, in which he expressed is beliefs about a “Divine Being ” quite a lot. Adolf Hitler, leader of Nazi Germany, helper Joseph Stalin, leader of the Holocaust, and tyrant still talked about 70 years later. Can you guess what their hearts looked like? I can guess. Isaac Newton, devote follower of Jesus Christ, firm believer who tries to discover as much as he can about God’s world. Adolf Hitler, obsessed with control, domination and death. No reverence to Christ at all, no thought of submission to anyone but himself. Now I challenge you to look at your life, see what others see. When you’re done look at your heart. See what other don’t see. Change what needs to be changed.
20: “Death and destruction are never satisfied, and neither are human eyes.” I’m just gonna quote Matthew Henry on this one: Two things are here said to be never satisfied, death and sin. The appetites of the carnal mind for profit or pleasure are always desiring more. Those whose eyes are ever toward the Lord, are satisfied in Him, and shall be for ever so.”
Let’s look at 25-26 last: ” When the hay is removed and new growth appears and the grass from the hills is gathered in, the lambs will provide you with clothing, and the goats with the price of a field.” This is talking about how when all your work is done, reward comes. This is a huge encouragement to me, as we are preparing for a huge cross-country move to PA.
God bless your week!