Contrasts–The Righteous and the Wicked!
Scripture reading for July 7th: Proverbs 10-13
Contrast is a literary device used in many of the proverbs to help convey truth. One of the contrasts in today’s reading is of the righteous man and the wicked man. The righteous man is wise and fears the Lord and the wicked man is foolish and hates God’s Word and God’s laws. Let’s look at these two types of people and try to evaluate our own lives as we read about them. We can learn from good examples as well as bad examples! I often say that if a person is not good for anything else, he can always be a bad example!
Let’s look first at the foolish or wicked man. Proverbs 10:1 states that the foolish son brings grief to his mother. The foolish man is lazy and sleeps during harvest instead of working. (Proverbs 10:4-5) The wicked man’s mouth is filled with violence and his hatred causes dissension and strife. They speak perverse things. (Proverbs 10:11-12, 31-32) The wicked earn wages of punishment and poverty. (Proverbs 10:15-16) The fool finds pleasure in evil conduct and lives in fear and dread of punishment that is sure to come upon him. (Proverbs 10:23-24) The wicked have no hope! (Proverbs 10:28, 11:23) Their own ways insure judgment and ruin in their lives and in the lives of those around them. (Proverbs 10:27-29) The wicked may gain wealth, but it will not help them in the day of judgment! (Proverbs 11:4, 18) There will be shouts of joy when the wicked perish from the land. (Proverbs 11:10) God detests those with perverse hearts and makes sure they will be punished! (Proverbs 11:20-21)
What a contrast is the righteous man or wise son! He is a joy to his father! (Proverbs 10:1) His righteousness delivers him from death and hunger and lack. He is a worker and enjoys plenty because he gathers the crops during harvest season. (Proverbs 10:3-5) He is blessed and his memory is a blessing to those he has touched. (Proverbs 10:6-7) He is always open to correction and is teachable. (Proverbs 10:17) His mouth is a fountain of life and wisdom is found on his lips. (Proverbs 10:8-11) He is a man of integrity and rests securely. His love covers over many wrongs. (Proverbs 10:12) He enjoys a long and joyful life because his way is the Lord’s way! (Proverbs 10:27-29) He is rescued from trouble and escapes destruction because of his wisdom and faithfulness to the Lord! His life blesses the city he lives in and he prospers! (Proverbs 11:10-11) God delights in the righteous man because his ways are blameless! He is generous and gives, yet gains even more! (Proverbs 11:20,24-25) He is a tree of life and wins souls to the Lord’s way! (Proverbs 11:30)
It doesn’t take a genius to figure out which way is the most profitable and blessed! If you are wise, you will enjoy the blessings listed for the righteous! If you are a fool and unteachable, no one can help you! The choice is yours!