Scripture reading for June 6th: Psalms 13-18
“The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.” They are corrupt, their deeds are vile; there is no one who does good.” Psalm 14:1
The fool in Scripture is the one who denies the existence of God. Isn’t God the one who made each person? Hasn’t God placed eternity in the hearts of all men? (Ecclesiastes 3:11) Isn’t God evident to all through creation, who’s voice has gone out to all mankind? (Psalm 19:2-4) The reason this kind of fool exists isn’t because of an intellectual problem. It isn’t because there is a lack of proof that God is really real! It is something much deeper than that!
According to Psalm 14, the reason the fool says that there is no God is because of corruption of character. These people are vile and do not do anything that would be considered ‘good’ in God’s sight. These people are not seeking God so that they do not have to answer for their wicked deeds. They prefer their corruption and want no ‘God’ to interfere with their evil ways of living. It is very convenient to do away with God or any knowledge of Him. They think this liberates them from responsibility and possible judgment.
The Apostle Paul describes the fool’s way of thinking in Romans 1:18-23. These people have known about God and His ways but have suppressed this truth in unrighteousness. God allows them to follow their darkened understanding and worship creatures and creation rather than the creator. (Romans 1:21-23) They often end up creating their own ‘god’ that will allow them to do what they want. Their end is idolatry and destruction!
The next step is sexual perversion. (Romans 1:24-27) When a person rejects God because of their wickedness, God allows that person to be deluded and go into further depravity. This results is all kinds of sexual sin, lying, greed, envy, malice, strife, and idolatry. It is where every ‘fool’ in Scripture ends up without the grace of God.
The good news is that fools can be set free! God is always ready to save, heal and forgive. We must humble ourselves and admit that He exists. (Hebrews 11:6) God would rather forgive and show mercy than to judge. If you have been foolish in your words or attitudes about God, take time today and repent. God is faithful and just and will forgive you! (1st John 1:7-9)
Scripture reading for March 23rd: 1st Samuel 24-26
Have you ever known someone who was hard to get along with? Not only that, they were rich and had lots of money and refused to help those who helped them? Nabal was such a man whose record is written down for us to ponder.
Nabal was a “Calebite”, a descendant of Caleb, the faithful spy and conqueror of giants. Nabal was described as “surly and mean in his dealings”. (1st Samuel 25:3) One of his own servants also described Nabal as “such a wicked man that no one could talk to him”. (1st Samuel 25:17) He liked to party and alcohol was also a factor in his reputation. (1st Samuel 25:36) If he were around today, he would fit in well with many men in our world who love alcohol, money, and cultivate a mean disposition. Looking at Nabal’s life is like watching one of today’s popular soap operas!
Nabal was married to a Abigail, a woman described as “intelligent and beautiful”. It is interesting how God places people together. Often our mate is the one who can help us with our own sins and weaknesses. Hearing how arrogantly her husband had treated the servants of David who had helped protect Nabal’s herds, she quickly took action to avert a disaster. Abigail took goods and met David and his men as they were coming to seek revenge. She appealed to David, humbly asking for his favor. David listened and relented and was spared from shedding of innocent blood.
Returning home, Abigail found her husband at a party, drunk. She waited until morning to tell him what she had done. When Nabal heard about her kindness, God struck him with what appears to be a stroke. The scripture says that Nabal “became like a stone”. Nabal died several days later and because of Abigail’s kindness and good sense, David asked her to marry him!
What lessons can we learn for our lives today? Alcohol is a source of great trouble in families and can cost individuals their health and often their soul! Second, revenge belongs to God alone. He alone will repay! He wants none to perish, but all to come to repentance if possible. Third, when we are humble, kind, and respect others, God will reward us. Abigail was a good wife to her mean and surly husband. She became a good wife to David!
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!