Proverbs 11

Scripture

vs 3 The integrity of the upright guides them, but the crookedness of the treacherous destroys them.
vs 4 Riches do not profit in the day of wrath, but righteousness delivers from death.

vs 6 The righteousness of the upright delivers them, but the treacherous are taken captive by their lust.
vs 7 When the wicked dies, his hope will perish, and the expectation of wealth perishes too.
vs 8 The righteous is delivered from trouble, and the wicked walks into it instead.

vs 18 The wicked earns deceptive wages, but one who sows righteousness gets a sure reward.
vs 19 Whoever is steadfast in righteousness will live, but he who pursues evil will die.

vs 23 The desire of the righteous ends only in good, the expectation of the wicked in wrath.

vs 28 Whoever trusts in his riches will fall, but the righteous will flourish like a green leaf.
vs 30 The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life, and whoever captures souls is wise.

Observation

 

Righteousness & Riches … Rewards and Wrath

Solomon is warning his listener of the significance of being a person of integrity or crookedness.

 

Righteousness leads to “deliverance” and “sure reward” and “flourishing” and “life”.

Crookedness leads to “destruction” and “wrath” and “perishing” and “death”

 

What’s more, the righteous are “delivered” and “guided”.

They are righteous by something outside of themselves!

The crooked, however, are taken captive by “their lust” and “walks into trouble”.

They are crooked by something within themselves and their own doing!

 

The Righteous and the Crooked have a different perspective, as well.

The righteous lives from the perspective of eternity … “Whoever is steadfast in righteousness will live”.

The crooked lives from the perspective of today … “When the wicked dies, his hope will perish”.

 

Application

 

What tempts me to do anything wrong? When I think I need to save myself.

And what makes me think I need to save myself? When my thinking gets narrowed to today more than eternity.

 

Focusing on what I “need” or “want” for today will take me down a “treacherous” path.

If I get stuck on what I dislike about my short-term circumstances, I’ll get stuck on what I can do to “fix them”.

I’ll be tempted to “trust in riches”.

When I do this, I’ll “walk into trouble”, instead of getting delivered from it!

 

So, what do I need to do? … Well, Solomon distinguishes between 2 things often thought of the same: “Desire” and “Lust”

Desire and Lust have different perspectives … forever vs for today!

The desires of the righteous “ends only in good”

But lust “takes captive”.

 

Ultimately, this comes down to “trust” … Who will I trust for true flourishing life? Myself or My Deliverer?

 

Prayer

 

Thank you, God, for your wisdom and word

Help me Holy Spirit to walk in your ways and guidance

Help me desire you and not lust after riches

Thank you that you give true and everlasting life

In Jesus name

Amen