Proverbs 9-12

Instruct a wise man and he will become wiser still … but not the fool. “Don’t bother correcting mockers; they will only hate you.” (9:8 NLT).

These four proverbs explain in detail the difference between the wise man and the fool.

The wise man is industrious, humble, teachable, truthful, and just to all. His words are true and full of kindness and mercy. He has a desire to bless those around him, not taking advantage of others, and not thinking too highly of himself.

The fool is just the opposite. He puts himself on a pedestal and takes no instruction. In fact, because of his pride, he mocks advice and correction. He is dishonest and mean to others. And he often is lazy – trying to reap where he didn’t sow. His words often hurt those around him, as he tries to control them – and have his own way.

So what is the fruit of each man? What does he obtain for his chosen  path?

The rewards are decidedly different as well. The wise man receives honor, riches, long life, a happy peaceful family – and a close walk with the Lord. His favor and His blessing.

The fool continues down the destructive path and reaps that reward. Hatred, strife in his home, poverty, illness, and everything we don’t want!

I know the path that I want to take. In fact, I want to be in dead center of it.

Lord, forgive me when I am proud and arrogant. Teach me your ways, and I want to be true to You all the days of my life.

II Corinthians 5

When we come to Christ we become new creatures in Him. Old things are passed away and all things become new – and all of these new things are from God. (V 17-18).

Such  a mystery; so supernatural. Yet it’s absolutely the truth.

I am reminded of a story I read about Augustine. (You know, St. Augustine).

Before he became a Christian, he was an atheist and an extremely worldly person. During this time in his life, he lived with a woman for many years.

He finally received Jesus and was born again – to this new life we are talking about.

Many years went by and Augustine happened to run into his former lover. She came running to meet him, calling out his name. He ignored her and didn’t stop to talk. She said, “Augustine! Look at me. It is I.” He turned and said, “But you don’t understand. It is not I.”

Augustine was so aware of the new creature which God had made him that he didn’t even identify with his “old man.”

Now I admit that was extreme, and I think he should have stopped to witness to her. However, that’s not the point. The point is that he saw himself as a completely new individual – now a child of God. He no longer saw himself as he had been.

If we could just “get” this concept, our lives would be so different. We would be pursuing this new life we have , and not just trying to live in both worlds –  the old and the new.

“All of this is a gift from God.” (V. 18). Let’s receive our gift and live in this new life He has made for us – with the Holy Spirit as our Teacher, and His Word as our guide.