Wisdom of Following Jesus

“And Jesus, walking by the sea of Galilee, saw two brethren, Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers. And He saith unto them,
‘Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.’
And they straightway left their nets, and followed Him.”  Matthew 4:18-20

“For the LORD giveth wisdom: out of His mouth cometh knowledge and understanding. He layeth up sound wisdom for the righteous: He is a buckler to them that walk uprightly. He keepeth the paths of judgment, and preserveth the way of His saints.
Then shalt thou understand righteousness, and judgment, and equity; yea, every good path.”  Proverbs 2:6-9

Exalt The LORD Our God; He Is Holy

“The LORD reigneth; let the people tremble: He sitteth between the cherubims; let the earth be moved.
The LORD is great in Zion; and He is high above all the people.
Let them praise Thy great and terrible name; for it is holy.
The king’s strength also loveth judgment; Thou dost establish equity, Thou executest judgment and righteousness in Jacob.
Exalt ye the LORD our God, and worship at his footstool; for he is holy.
Moses and Aaron among His priests, and Samuel among them that call upon His name; they called upon the LORD, and He answered them. He spake unto them in the cloudy pillar: they kept His testimonies, and the ordinance that He gave them.
Thou answeredst them, O LORD our God: Thou wast a God that forgavest them, though Thou tookest vengeance of their inventions.
Exalt the LORD our God, and worship at His holy hill; for the LORD our God is holy.”  Psalm 99:1-9  (KJB)

He Will Judge The Earth With Righteousness

“O sing unto the LORD a new song; for He hath done marvellous things: His right hand, and His holy arm, hath gotten Him the victory.
The LORD hath made known His salvation: His righteousness hath He openly shewed in the sight of the heathen. He hath remembered His mercy and His truth toward the house of Israel: all the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God.
Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all the earth: make a loud noise, and rejoice, and sing praise. Sing unto the LORD with the harp; with the harp, and the voice of a psalm. With trumpets and sound of cornet make a joyful noise before the LORD, the King.
Let the sea roar, and the fulness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein. Let the floods clap their hands: let the hills be joyful together before the LORD; for He cometh to judge the earth: with righteousness shall He judge the world, and the people with equity.”  Psalm 98:1-9  (KJB)

Understanding Righteousness, Judgment, and Equity

“For the LORD giveth wisdom: out of His mouth cometh knowledge and understanding. He layeth up sound wisdom for the righteous: He is a buckler to them that walk uprightly.
He keepeth the paths of judgment, and preserveth the way of His saints. Then shalt thou understand righteousness, and judgment, and equity; yea, every good path.” Proverbs 2:6-9 (KJB)

Prophets Speak – Christmas Day One Hundred Forty and Eight

“And judgment is turned away backward, and justice stands afar off: for truth is fallen in the street, and equity cannot enter. Yea, truth fails; and he that departs from evil makes himself a prey: and the LORD saw it, and it displeased Him that there was no judgment.” Isaiah 59:14-15 (KJV)

The above verses are a part of Isaiah’s prayer confessing the sins of God’s people, and they had forsaken truth; which the prophet was confessing as their sin as well.

What do I want for Christmas today?

For courage in the midst of evil and wickedness; to stand faithful to God and His Word no matter what the wicked ones may do; even if it means my life; to always remember that God’s Word is the truth, even when others forsake it, trample it under feet,  deny it, or twist it; God’s Word is sure; and every word of it will be fulfilled just as He has spoken it.

Prophets Speak – Christmas Day One Hundred Fifty and Seven

“The way of the just is uprightness; O Most Upright, You weigh the path of the just. Yes, in the way of Your judgments, O LORD, we have waited for You; the desire of our soul is for Your name and for the remembrance of You. With my soul I have desired You in the night, yes, by my spirit within me I will seek You early; for when Your judgments are in the earth, the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness.” Isaiah 26:7-9 (NKJV)

What do I want for Christmas?

Since the Word of God is the revelation, to us, of God, His grace, His love, His mercy, His justice, and equity; I want to always be in accord and agreement with God that I might always be on that path of justness, and equity with all people, but never falter in the way of God’s Word – the truth.

Jesus Christ is the Way, the Truth, and the Life (John 14:6).

When Truth Has Fallen in the Street

“Therefore is judgment far from us, neither doth justice overtake us: we wait for light, but behold obscurity; for brightness, but we walk in darkness. We grope for the wall like the blind, and we grope as if we had no eyes: we stumble at noonday as in the night; we are in desolate places as dead men. We roar all like bears, and mourn sore like doves: we look for judgment, but there is none; for salvation, but it is far off from us. For our transgressions are multiplied before Thee, and our sins testify against us: for our transgressions are with us; and as for our iniquities, we know them; in transgressing and lying against the LORD, and departing away from our God, speaking oppression and revolt, conceiving and uttering from the heart words of falsehood. And judgment is turned away backward, and justice standeth afar off: for truth is fallen in the street, and equity cannot enter. Yea, truth faileth; and he that departeth from evil maketh himself a prey: and the LORD saw it, and it displeased him that there was no judgment.” Isaiah 59:9-15

There is a problem with being a prophet of God. One is that what ever he prophesies is what he will endure, receive and go through as well as the people he warns. Whether it is a prophecy for good; or a prophecy for judgment he will endure it as well.

The above verses are a confessional prayer/statement to the LORD, and to the nation. Note that Isaiah includes himself in the confession “Judgment [Justice] is far from us”, “but we walk in darkness”, and “we grope”, “we had no eyes”, “we stumble”. You get my point I am sure.

Even though the prophet had probably not committed these atrocities, these sins he includes himself in the array, because this was his nation, his people, and God had been offended by the sins of the people; the kings, princes, nobles and all.

Where we have sinned let us confess it and forsake it. Let us turn our backs on sin; not on God. Let us forsake evil and sin, not our God. Let us stand for truth, though it may be fallen in the street. Though we turn our backs on evil and sin; though we may become a prey because we do so. Let us do so.

“”If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9

The cleansing means that we turn our backs on sin, to not live it in repetition.

Day 46 – Proverbs of Wisdom and Fear

Many wise men have written wise sayings for people to follow.  The wisest of men was King Solomon, because God gave him the wisdom to rule his people that he asked for.  Then, because of his wise prayer and requests God gave him what he did not ask for; and it was many of those blessings which caused him to fall.

My reading today was Proverbs 1 – 14.  I will not spend a whole lot of time here going through these chapters.  There are two or three things about the “fear of the LORD” I do want to point out.

“The proverbs of Solomon the son of David, king of Israel; to know wisdom and instruction; to perceive the words of understanding; to receive the instruction of wisdom, justice, and judgment, and equity; to give subtilty to the simple, to the young man knowledge and discretion.” Proverbs 1:1-4 (KJV)

Solomon gives us the purpose for the Proverbs; to know wisdom and instruction; to perceive [discern] words of understanding; to receive instruction of wisdom, justice, judgment, and equity; or as the New Living Translation says it –

“Through these proverbs, people will receive instruction in discipline, good conduct, and doing what is right, just, and fair.”  Proverbs 1:3 (NLT)

One thing we need to understand about these proverbs is that they are “Proverbs” not “Promises”.  They are basically a general rule of things.  God has given us many precious promises in His Word, these are not them.  There is much to learn in Proverbs.  How we deal with God, our fellow man, knowledge, understanding, wisdom – there are many individual verses of Proverbs dealing with wisdom, however, there are two complete chapters of Proverbs which personalize wisdom (chapters 8 – 9).

Let us proceed with a couple of more sets of Proverbs.

“The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.” 1:7

Of this verse Matthew Henry has written –

To make young people such as they should be,
I. Let them have regard to God as their supreme.
1. He lays down this truth, that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge (v. 7); it is the principal part of knowledge (so the margin); it is the head of knowledge; that is, (1.) Of all things that are to be known this is most evident, that God is to be feared, to be reverenced, served, and worshipped; this is so the beginning of knowledge that those know nothing who do not know this. (2.) In order to the attaining of all useful knowledge this is most necessary, that we fear God; we are not qualified to profit by the instructions that are given us unless our minds be possessed with a holy reverence of God, and every thought within us be brought into obedience to him. If any man will do his will, he shall know of his doctrine, Jn. 7:17. (3.) As all our knowledge must take rise from the fear of God, so it must tend to it as its perfection and centre. Those know enough who know how to fear God, who are careful in every thing to please him and fearful of offending him in any thing; this is the Alpha and Omega of knowledge.
2. To confirm this truth, that an eye to God must both direct and quicken all our pursuits of knowledge, he observes, Fools (atheists, who have no regard to God) despise wisdom and instruction; having no dread at all of God’s wrath, nor any desire of his favour, they will not give you thanks for telling them what they may do to escape his wrath and obtain his favour. Those who say to the Almighty, Depart from us, who are so far from fearing him that they set him at defiance, can excite no surprise if they desire not the knowledge of his ways, but despise that instruction. Note, Those are fools who do not fear God and value the scriptures; and though they may pretend to be admirers of wit they are really strangers and enemies to wisdom.  MATTHEW HENRY COMMENTARY, LibronixDigitalLibrarySystem

The final verses I would point out in my reading for the day are,

“In the fear of the LORD is strong confidence: and His children shall have a place of refuge.  The fear of the LORD is a fountain of life, to depart from the snares of death.”  14:26-27

Of these verses I have written previously.  There is strong confidence for the children of the LORD who place their trust in the LORD.  When we truly fear God there is absolutely nothing else to fear.

When we know the One who has taken all the wrath of God upon Himself, and that is Jesus Christ; then we have perfect peace with God, there is no condemnation, and we have an eternal resting place with the Creator of all that is.

-Tim A. Blankenship