Skip to main content

January 13 2014: Proverbs 13

Just a note: I am posting this from written notes on January 13. The actual computer entry is being done on January 14, but I’ve set the date for the proper calendar spot. Yet, it is that simple. No, I don’t think you could fool a serious investigation with it, but do keep it mind when examining the blog world. I could write a post and backdate it before some crisis and claim prophetic skills. Dig deeper.

Proverbs 13:11 speaks to the accumulation of wealth. One thing to note first off is that the Bible is not explicitly anti-material wealth. The Scripture, as a whole, is firmly against making wealth an idol, using wealth badly, or sinning to acquire wealth. Having wealth, however, is not a sin—and neither is income inequality. Injustice is sinful, but is it injustice that a brain surgeon makes more than a small-time writer and rural church pastor? Not really: the brain surgeon has rightly earned her income, just as the pastor has his.


Coming forward, though, we see the proverb tells us that wealth gained by fraud dwindles. Now, wealth comes in several forms. There is material wealth. There is fame, there is power, there is reputation. Any form of this that one attains by fraud? It may peak, but it will plummet over time.


Fake your resume for a job? It’ll get caught, eventually—or in some manner, that comes back on you.


Defraud your workers to amp up your own retirement fund? Hose your customers to spike your holiday profits? Guess what? There’s a long-term horizon, and it will bite you. Hard in the backside. I think this is part of what has occurred in our economy—we made a lot of wealth outsourcing jobs in the 80s-90s, and now? We’re dwindling.


We defrauded ourselves into thinking money was enough, and began doing lots of business with some pretty nasty customers, and now our national wealth dwindles while we import everything from those countries. Long-term, consider even the oil needs. We’ve defrauded ourselves emotionally.


There is a positive side, though: gathering by labor increases.


If you are the one who consistently strives, does the work, it will accrue over time. It may not be all-cash, but the wealth of integrity is far better. And it is much better than destruction.


And now, a special note to my ministerial brethren:


Guess what, folks? When you spike a church’s attendance by gimmicks and tricks, it’s a fraud. When you choose not to preach the whole counsel of God, it’s a fraud.


And it may bring you wealth for a season. Some of you, it may bring book deals and speaking gigs.


But it will dwindle.


Instead, gather the wealth of the kingdom by steady labor: pray, teach, grow, reach, and gather the people that will serve God. Gather His laborers, gather eternal wealth: the reward of the obedient and faithful.


Popular posts from this blog

Book Review: The Heart Mender by @andyandrews (Andy Andrews)

The Heart Mender: A Story of Second ChancesEver read a book that you just kind of wish is true?  That's my take on The Heart Mender by Andy Andrews.  It's a charming story of love and forgiveness, and it's woven into the historical setting of World War II America.  For the narrative alone, the book is worth the read, but the message it contains is well worth absorbing as well.However, let's drop back a minute.  This book was originally published under the title Island of Saints.  I read Island of Saints and enjoyed it greatly.  Now, Andrews has released it under a new title, with a few minor changes.  All of this is explained in the Author's Note at the beginning, but should be noted for purchaser's sake.  If you read Island of Saints, you're rereading when you read The Heart Mender.  Now, go ahead and reread it.  It will not hurt you one bit.Overall, the story is well-paced.  There are points where I'd like more detail, both in the history and the geog…

Abraham Lincoln Quoted by Jesus! Mark 3

Mark records a curious event in his third chapter (link). If you look at Mark 3:25, you'll see that Jesus quotes the sixteenth President of the United States, Abraham Lincoln. After all, one of the highlights of the Lincoln years is his famous speech regarding slavery in the United States where he used the phrase that "a house divided against itself cannot stand." This speech was given in 1858 when he accepted the nomination to run against Stephen A. Douglas for Senate, but is still remembered as the defining speech regarding slaveholding in the United States. I recall being taught in school how brilliant and groundbreaking the speech was, how Lincoln had used such wise words to convey his thought. Yet the idea was not original to Lincoln. Rather, it was embedded in Lincoln from his time reading the Bible. Now, I have read varying reports about Lincoln's personal religious beliefs: some place him as a nearly completely committed Christian while others have him somewh…

Independence Day 2017

I don’t know if Thomas Paine will be aggrieved that I paste his thoughts from Common Sense here, from the electronic edition. It’s a Public Domain work at this point, so hopefully none will be bothered that I am not paying for it...I think there is value in seeing the underlying reasons of Independence. I find a couple of things noteworthy in his introduction:First, he speaks of those who disagree and, while calling those out, holds the strength of his affirmative argument will be enough to straighten them out. We could do well to think more like that.Second, his final sentence should be a required view: the influence of reason and principle. Not self-interest masquerading as principle. Not party propaganda disguised as reason.That being said, not everything Paine said is right. If he and I lived at the same time, we’d argue religion over a great deal. However, the idea of “natural rights of man” follows from the idea of humanity as a special creation—that all are created equal and en…