The Way of the Lord

Proverbs 10:26-29 

26 As vinegar to the teeth and smoke to the eyes, so are sluggards to those who send them. 27 The fear of the Lord adds length to life, but the years of the wicked are cut short. 28 The prospect of the righteous is joy, but the hopes of the wicked come to nothing. 29 The way of the Lord is a refuge for the blameless, but it is the ruin of those who do evil.

Pickled Cucumber

            Do you like to eat cucumber? Accordingly, cucumber is nutritious. People like to eat pickled cucumber also. Pickled cucumber is preserved with vinegar.

Experts warn that consumption of too much vinegar is dangerous to health. Vinegar has digestive side effect; it causes erosion of tooth enamel. Solomon the wise king of Israel compared a sluggard to vinegar. As vinegar destroys the teeth, so are the sluggards destroys the trust in them of those who command them.

            How or where did Solomon confidently learn about health advisory? There is no organized educational system mentioned in the Scripture similar to modern time universities. So, how did King Solomon get knowledge when he advised what is favorable to health and also not beneficial to health? God gave him wisdom.

            And where did the first original university professors get wisdom when they established the very first university? Did God give them wisdom? King Solomon and the very first university professors had not studied in organized educational system. And yet without the benefit of formal university education, they’ve got wisdom of what they have taught; can we access to similar wisdom from God?

            Together, let’s seriously reflect on what it commands in Ephesians 5:17-18: 17Do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is. 18Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit.

            As oppose to foolishness, to understand the will of God practically displays wisdom. It is wise to pray and be filled with the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit who gave wisdom to King Solomon is the same Holy Spirit of Christ that we received when we accepted Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior. The Holy Spirit of Christ guarantees us of his gift of eternal life and not just prolonged life on earth.

1.  Prolong

26 As vinegar to the teeth and smoke to the eyes, so are sluggards to those who send them. 27 The fear of the Lord adds length to life, but the years of the wicked are cut short.

            In a generation when there’s no advance technology yet, and farming was the main source of income for the family, what would keep children ignore their parents when they are told to help plant vegetable or anything in the field?

            In this generation, children had been occupied by high tech gadgets. What would parents expect when they tell their children to help in household chores? In the past and present generation, children can easily find reasons to ignore their parents, why? Can you accept that it’s instinctive to human to ignore instructions?

            When employers give instructions to employees, it is wise to obey the boss right away. In comparison, it is foolish to delay a command. Like vinegar to teeth and smoke to the eyes, employers cannot appreciate sluggard employees.

The proverb: “Sluggards to those who send them are like vinegar to the teeth and smoke to the eyes, how is it related to prolonged life of those who fear God and shortened life of the wicked? Is it about the years we live on earth? We don’t wish long years in poverty; we want life of sufficient financial supply, right?

Casual vs. Permanent

Which employment do you prefer: permanent employment or just casual?

If you have a family to support, you’ve got mortgage and bills to pay, yet you are employed as casual or contractual; you are not certain if you will still be employed next month.Well for sure, you will not gladly choose such situation, will you?

Casual employments are opportunities to evaluate diligence of employees. The casual employees who work diligently are beneficial to the company, and they are preferably chosen to be employed permanently. Diligence is an awesome testimony, and God also favors diligent believers for sure. What do you think?

So, what is fear of the Lord that prolongs life? Fear of the Lord is practice of faith also that the Lord has greater plan, and that could inspire us to be diligent as oppose to being sluggard; sluggard may irritate employers or other employees.

It warns in 1 Timothy 4:16, 16 Watch your life and doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers.

As children of God, our testimony is at stake. Wherever we are situated, someone is observing us. We work diligently as if we are working for the Lord. Do you believe that the Lord situate us where we are? Do you sincerely trust that the ways of the Lord is our refuge, and he protects even our testimonies also?

2.  Protect

28 The prospect of the righteous is joy, but the hopes of the wicked come to nothing. 29 The way of the Lord is a refuge for the blameless, but it is the ruin of those who do evil.

            The term “Joy” is gladness of the heart that would stimulate celebration like festivities or party. This kind of joy excites celebration with love ones, friends family, relatives or community as compared to silent celebration alone.

            During basketball games or football games, cheering squads prompt and spur sports fans to cheer up their favorite team or player. When their team wins, sport fans celebrate without being prompted by cheering squad, right? Biblical joy is experienced and celebrated when obstacle is overcome like winning a battle.

Reflect on what it says in Psalm 118:15, 15Shouts of joy and victory resound in the tents of the righteous: “The Lord’s right hand has done mighty things!”

            If you were observing closely what could happen during the war, soldiers have no time for relaxation. They may not even find time to take a bath. No time to watch movies; no option to eat their favorite food. They’ve got limited food.

King David and his army spent weeks and months in battle. And after their enemies were defeated, they shouted aloud and celebrated their victory. But King David didn’t fail to remind his soldiers: “The Lord’s right hand has done mighty things!” Their celebration was centered on how the Lord had given them victory.

Coming to Canada

What is it that you regularly celebrate and give thank to the Lord all the days of your life? Do you celebrate the day you are very sure the Lord has given you eternal life? Do you celebrate the time you become part of this church? Do you celebrate the day you entered or become citizen of this country?

Have you ever overcome struggles in life that you celebrate all your life?

As a family, we celebrate the day when we become Canadian citizens. As citizens of this country, we have wider opportunities not just for compensation, but also the best practical exhibit that the way of the Lord is refuge for us from struggles.

 What else? Together with you, his faithful servants, we are privileged to serve the Lord in The Maples Evangelical Church. Such privilege is awesome experience.

Being thankful of our eternal life should be manifested practically by desire to serve the Lord unconditionally. Why? We trust that the ways of the Lord result to joyful celebration on earth and in the next life. We expect eternal celebration.

The ways of the Lord are designed for our betterment now until forever.

God is faithful to his promise. May we serve him all the days of our life!

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