After 30 great lessons, there is still more. Justice that is blind to the pocketbook or persuasion is true judgment. To do otherwise is to incur the wrath of man and God.
I don’t know about you, but I looked ahead to see what came after the 30 wise words. I want to know if these were the final words of advice for us. They aren’t. Our author has many more pieces of wisdom to pass onto us. And as the true Author is the Holy Spirit, the learning NEVER ends!
Today’s wisdom covers some of the same ground that we had already covered, but it includes a little extra piece. Previously, when our author talked about the scales of justice being fair, he pointed to God’s laws and punishments. So, the man who didn’t fear God at all, felt he had no reason to comply with God’s standards. Jesus even spoke of this in one of His parables. In Luke 18:1-8 He tells of a woman who kept coming before and unjust judge. She wouldn’t take “no” for an answer.
The unjust judge in Jesus’ parable didn’t give in to her because he saw how wrong he was in the eyes of God. He gave in out of frustration and to look good to the people. Our text tells us that those in authority who are corrupted “will be cursed by peoples, abhorred by nations” (verse 24b). They incur not only the anger of God but of all those around them. It goes without saying that God’s wrath is the greater danger, but those who don’t fear Him don’t think they need to care about this possibility. But they DO fear the hearts of the people turning against them. Their places of authority are dependent on the people’s support. Withdraw that support and they are nothing but empty figureheads.
Our author also ads one more piece of encouragement. He tells us that “those who rebuke the wicked will have delight, and a good blessing will come upon them” (verse 25). Standing against a corrupt official brings “delight.” I will say that it is not an overnight ‘delight’ but it is a promised end. The word “rebuke” her implies (to me anyway) a face to face confrontation, or at least a STRONG stating of displeasure with the person. The rebuke cannot be based on simply not liking the man, but on his unjust behavior. It also has to be in some form that will be noticed by the one being rebuked.
I don’t know what God thinks of all the protests going on in this world. Does He consider them a “rebuke” of unjust leaders? Is the real message being delivered in these forums or are they becoming so overused that their purpose is lost? Are they becoming a social ‘outlet’ for those who want to display anger over whatever reason? I’m pretty certain many of them are being used as an excuse to commit acts of violence. They are also being used to divide the people into camps.
Yes! We are to call out, rebuke, corrupt leaders. But we are also to pray for them. Pray that God gets their attention, by whatever means necessary, and turns their hearts towards Him and the people. What that forum looks like for you, I have no idea. When you let God lead you though, you can be certain He knows what is needed. And He can direct you in how to make the most of your voice.
Father God, I pray for the leaders of my nation. I include the leaders of all the other nations on earth too. For those who fit the “corrupt” definition, take hold of their hearts. Protect us from them in the meantime. For those who are godly, let their voices ring above ALL others. Let them feel the people standing behind them and draw strength from them. Help me know how to use my voice in this arena. You know how unpolitical I am. Don’t let that turn into apathy. Tell me when to stand and when to sit. When to speak and when to listen. Make every word from my mouth be given through Your Spirit.
I would like this to be how my WHOLE life is lived but I know the regular cared of the day creep in and draw my attention. Yet, even in these times, let my words and works reflect YOUR love.
I also know it has to get worse before Jesus returns. Come quickly Lord Jesus!