RAF: Unresolved guilt gives the heart no rest. And a guilty heart often produces fearfulness and timidity.
2 – “When a land transgresses, it has many rulers, but with a man of understanding and knowledge, its stability will long continue.” (Proverbs 28:2, ESV)
RAF: An increase in civil government is a direct result of a nation which is moving away from God. Government must increase to try and make up for the lack of self-government. It is a vicious cycle. The less responsibility each person takes for themselves before God, the more imposition from the outside becomes necessary to keep chaos from taking over. The problem is that over time, the governmental structure becomes so inflated, it must collapse under its own weight. Fewer and fewer people take responsibility for themselves before God, and that corruption extends to the government since the government is but – people. Those trying to enforce the rules and regulations themselves have abandoned personal responsibility – and thus a self-imposed judgment is inevitable. Our men and women in leadership will continue to reflect the populace in general, and will grow more and more corrupt over time. Only the Holy Spirit reigning in the hearts of men can reverse such a state of affairs. No governmental system is capable. Sin can only be dealt with in Christ – not by any external structure.
3 – “Evil men do not understand justice, but those who seek the Lord understand it completely.” (Proverbs 28:5, ESV)
RAF: Those who seek the Lord, have some real sense of the true gravity of sin. Thus they understand the nature of what justice truly demands. They have felt conviction as it comes from God through His Spirit. They have seen justice at the Cross. They know their own sin is due such a death and eternal penalty. They understand mercy and grace are not simple dismissives – that justice meted out awesome in scope and magnitude. They understand nothing less than the full extent of the Law is required – and that grace must take that into account in making a way of redemption. They understand it, because their Redeemer, has paid their price.
4 – “Whoever conceals his transgressions will not prosper, but he who confesses and forsakes them will obtain mercy.” (Proverbs 28:13, ESV)
RAF: The secrecy of sin is its power to bind. What is forced underground, hides and cannot be easily rooted out. Father, give me a heart that detects and acknowledges my sin quickly. May there be nothing between us.
5 – “Blessed is the one who fears the Lord always, but whoever hardens his heart will fall into calamity.” (Proverbs 28:14, ESV)
RAF: DO NOT resist the work of the Spirit in pricking your heart regarding sin. Hardness against His work will result in an eventual fall into calamity you will not be able to bear.
6 – “A faithful man will abound with blessings, but whoever hastens to be rich will not go unpunished.” (Proverbs 28:20, ESV)
RAF: There is no shortcut to spiritual growth and maturity – faithfulness alone takes the day.
7 – “Where there is no prophetic vision the people cast off restraint, but blessed is he who keeps the law.” (Proverbs 29:18, ESV)
RAF: Life is meant to be lived in direct relationship to God’s purpose and plan. Where is all of this going? How will it end? What happens after death? These things God has told us about. Prophets constantly remind us of God’s program. And it is in this context that lives get ordered well. When these cease to be realities, when we lose sight of what it means that we will all stand before the judgment bar of God and give an answer for the things done in these bodies – whether good or bad – we fail to address sin, and just let things be. Father, deliver us from lives that do not live with eternity in view. That neither strive after your promises, nor fear your judgments. Save us from the sucking vortex of the existential moment.
8 – Proverbs 30:15-33 gives us 5 Master Lessons in Life.
1. “The leech has two daughters: Give and Give. Three things are never satisfied; four never say, “Enough”:” (Proverbs 30:15, ESV)
1. 15-16 / There are UNFILLABLE voids in the souls of men. Do not be surprised at the lengths to men will go to try and satisfy such voids. Even yourself. Eph. 1.23.
2. “Three things are too wonderful for me; four I do not understand:” (Proverbs 30:18, ESV)
2. 18-19 / There are UNFATHOMABLE mysteries in life. Do not be surprised there are things you will not be able to figure out. You will not get all the answers you seek. Col. 2.2 Job Learned that the – WHO in all things is more important than the WHY?
3. “Under three things the earth trembles; under four it cannot bear up:” (Proverbs 30:21, ESV)
3. 21-23 / There are UNFITTING realities in life. Don’t be surprised at injustice here. Col. 1.20
4. “Four things on earth are small, but they are exceedingly wise:” (Proverbs 30:24, ESV)
4. 24-28 / There is UNTAPPED wisdom in Creation all around you. Don’t be surprised if some of the answers are right in front of you.
5. “Three things are stately in their tread; four are stately in their stride:” (Proverbs 30:29, ESV)
5. 29-31 / The are UNLINKED similarities in life. Not everything is a conspiracy. Men simply share a common fallen nature.
9 – Proverbs 31:10-31 / Church – Bride of Christ – does this describe us?
1. 11 / Can Christ trust us that He will gain from our efforts?
2. 12 / Do we do Him good? Or does His reputation suffer at our hands?
3. 13 / Are we industrious for the Kingdom? Or just making do?
4. 14 / Do we go to great lengths to get His choice Word for our souls?
5. 15 / Do we labor secretly to see to it His Word is prepared for His household, and for those who are close at hand?
6. 16 / Do we seek the growth of the Kingdom and set in motion plans to make it happen, that the Fruit of His vine might increase?
7. 17 / Have we strengthened ourself in the Lord?
8. 18 / Do we perceive how eternally valuable what we have in Him is – this ministry of the Word?
9. 19 / Are we busy producing the bare thread of what becomes the garments of righteousness?
10. 20 / Are we generous to the lost and those in need?
11. 21 / Do we not fear evil and “cold” seasons because we have prepared well in Him?
12. 22 / Do we make room for times of deep intimacy with Him?
13. 23 / Have we protected His reputation in the marketplace?
14. 24 / Are we about the business of getting the garments of salvation out among the people?
15. 25 / Are we strong in our relationship with Him and not fearful of the coming judgment because of it?
16. 26 / Are we making the Gospel known, and communicating it in kindness and compassion for the souls of men?
17. 27 / Are we mindful of the orderliness of His Household, and not disengaged or lazy in our labors within it?
18. 28 / Will those who come to Christ rise to bless our efforts on their behalf? Will the other saints? Will he?
19. 29 / Are we admired for how we have attended Him in faithfulness?
20. 30 / Have we been more occupied with making ourselves beautiful outwardly to the world, than about what pleases Him?
21. 31 / If our reward is the fruit of what we’ve done in His name – would it prove sweet, satisfying and abundant?