Friday, August 5, 2011

August 5th – Proverbs 5: Marley Was Right!

*Some might say that I’m a little morbid or negative with these blog posts. But that isn’t the case. What I am attempting to do is uncover the practices of fools so we can AVOID the destructive results of their lives. No little girls have ever told their Mom, “Mommy, when I grow up, I want to be an alcoholic!” When we are young we ALL want to be a person of significance. We want to accomplish great things and be great people. By studying the Proverbs, we can understand what LEADS to destruction and uncover what leads to a life of fulfillment and righteousness.
“The evil deeds of a wicked man ensnare him; the cords of his sin hold him fast. He will die for lack of discipline, led astray by his own great folly.” – Proverbs 5:22
Remember that part in “A Christmas Carol” where Marley meets Scrooge in the middle of the night? He comes into his room all spookily floating and carrying these huge chains wrapped around his body. He tells Scrooge that the chains were fashioned link by link as they failed to show goodness and mercy on earth! Now is this just a silly fiction or truth in disguise?
The Bible says that the evil deeds of wicked men become a snare, or a trap to them. It says that the cords of his sin hold him in bondage. So it’s true that our behavior sets the course of our lives, whether for good or evil. We are held by what we do. When we live righteously, our righteous acts pave a road ahead of us and the road is level, smooth and firm:
“The path of the righteous is level; O upright One, you make the way of the righteous smooth.” – Isaiah 26:7
When we live unrighteously, every evil deed we do becomes another obstacle to overcome. Some people, not showing self-control in their finances and living above their means, get in the horrible bondage of debt. Then, to get out from under the first bondage, they will do something else that just compounds the problem. They might cheat on their taxes,, just to keep a little extra to pay their bills with. Or maybe they get involved with a shady investment or crooked business scheme. In a minute, they are completely ensnared by their unrighteousness. What started as a relatively small thing ultimately consumes their lives!
I think it’s interesting that what the wicked ultimately die from is NOT their wickedness and sin, but from a lack of discipline. Several years ago I was sitting in a car repair shop next to a man in his late eighties. He was full of life and full of excitement, I really enjoyed talking to him. He was a WWII Veteran, loved the Lord and was as happy as could be. Before I left I asked him, “What would you tell a young man like me is a key to living a great life?” His answer surprised me. He told me, “Son, the #1 thing you need to get a hold of is discipline. Without it, your life will always be a mess!”
Listen to the happy old fella, go get you some DISCIPLINE!

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