Solomon reminds us in today’s proverbs (20:6-7) that, although times have changed, the heart of man has remained the same. Some might argue that this generation is better educated and more sophisticated than previous generations; however, we are none the wiser! The maladies of the heart are constant from generation to generation. Pride and disloyalty are two maladies Solomon addresses in Proverbs 20:6.
Proverbs 20:6 – “Most [plenty; multitude] men will proclaim [pronounce; publish; recite] every one [man; individual] his own goodness [favor; good deeds; steadfast loving kindness; loyalty]: but a faithful [trustworthy] man who can find [meet; get; attain]?”
A survey of Facebook postings will validate Solomon’s observation—Most men are busy putting their “best face” forward—literally! “Selfies” have become the rage with cell phone cameras and evidence how self-enamored we have become as a society [Do you ever look at photos people post and wonder, “What were they thinking?”]. Add to the selfies the self-aggrandizement postings of one’s daily activities and we agree with Solomon—everyone does publish his own goodness!
In addition to the malady of self-promotion is the near universal problem of disloyalty and infidelity (20:6b). Solomon asks, “Who can find a faithful, honest, trustworthy man?” What a sad commentary on the nature of man! Marital infidelity, disloyalty, lies and deceptions are epidemic in our society, churches, homes and friendships. Are you worthy of another’s trust? Are you loyal, honest and true—even at the risk of acceptance or loss of friendship? Do you value truth above popularity? Are you willing to be that man?
Proverbs 20:7 continues the subject of a man’s character, focusing on the spiritual legacy he leaves his children.
Proverbs 20:7 – “The just [righteous; lawful] man walketh [continually goes] in his integrity [innocence; uprightness; completeness; in accord with truth]: his children are blessed [happy; prosper] after him [follow; come behind; walk in his footsteps].”
There is not one among us whose life fails to cast a shadow of influence over his family and friends. While the sinful legacy of the ungodly is borne by their children “unto the third and fourth generation” (Exodus 20:5-6), the children of the godly are blessed when they choose to follow in the footsteps of their father and mother.
What kind of spiritual legacy are you going to leave your children and children’s children?
Copyright 2014 – Travis D. Smith