Solomon is advising each man to be responsible with what you have. The righteous are prudent with God’s gifts where the wicked squander and abuse them.
I’m still sticking with my bible helps break out groupings. Today they said that these verses dealt with ordinary workers who either had “good sense” or were of a “twisted mind”, as is mentioned in the previous verse. This certainly sounds reasonable to me. So let’s look at the two different men.
The man with “good sense” is the righteous man. We have already established that such a man is not lazy, is honest, follows the Law, accepts advice, seeks wisdom, and trusts in God for all he has. Today we see that he takes care of what he has; what God has given him. He works his fields in their seasons and uses what he gathers to care for his family. He cares for his animals too. He sees to their needs as surely as he sees to his own. One big piece of this is that he is grateful for what he has and doesn’t try and “put on heirs.” He works with what God has given him and assumes nothing more. There is no pretense of wealth. He is who he is and that is fine with him.
The man of a “twisted mind” is the evil or worthless man. We have established that he is lazy, always on the lookout for get rich quick schemes, is a thief, and a liar. There is never enough for him. If he were a millionaire he would still be reaching for that next dollar, no matter who it hurt along the way. He is too busy trying to reach his next level that he neglects what he already has. Working his fields is beneath his dignity as is caring for his animals. The only times these things have value to him are when he holds them up so others can see what he has. This is true for his family as well. They all have to appear to be perfect, even if they are hollow’ within. Even if God were to bless him, he wouldn’t be satisfied.
What drives these two men is what makes their lives, and final outcomes, so different. The righteous man seeks to please God. He seeks wisdom in living his life. The song Lead Me comes to mind in describing him. He is not perfect but he relies on God to guide his life. He seeks good sense, wisdom, and uses it.
The wicked man focuses only on himself and how others might perceive him. He is proud and arrogant in everything he does, even when it turns out in disaster. Then it was someone else’s fault for the failure. I worked for a person such as this at one point in my life. I’m GLAD to be away from that job! I may have even walked in the shoes of such a person myself for a few miles. The part about building myself up to be bigger than I am sounds very familiar.
God has a way of bringing us back to Himself when we have asked Him to be Lord of our lives. Even when we walk in the shoes of the wicked for a time. Last night I was reading the previous blog post to my husband at his request. When I finished he said, “That’s why I had a brain tumor.” I asked him what he meant by that. He told me that God was trying to get his attention. I don’t believe God gave him the brain tumor but I certainly see the results God worked by using it. He was pretty big on ‘putting on airs’ at one point in his life. What he has walked through has humbled him significantly.
We both suffered from the same sin. Maybe that’s why God put us together. So we could help each other rise above that sin. I know God is building something within us together that will glorify Him. One day at a time. We still have a long way to go to perfection.
Father God, don’t let me become boastful again. Thank You for the blessings You have poured into my (our) life. Thank You for teaching me to be grateful for what I have instead of always wanting something better. I’m sorry that I seem to have forgotten that lesson lately in the area of sewing. Thank You for reminding me of it. Help me to bless others with what I have been given.