In an earlier devotional from Proverbs 24 I noted Solomon’s exhortation to his son to fear and revere both God and the king (24:22). Solomon continues his teaching concerning the justice and judgment of God by admonishing his son, in light of God’s judgment, to be just when he judges state and civil matters.
Proverbs 24:23 – “These things also belong to the wise [cunning; intelligent; wise hearted; experienced in the ways of the Lord]. It is not good [better; best; pleasing] to have respect [regard; recognize] of persons [face; countenance] in judgment [verdict; law; sentence].”
The first lesson is a reminder that a righteous judge, one who is discerning and wise in the ways and Law of God will render the best judgment he or she can without regard to a man or woman’s person [whether they are poor or wealthy, powerful or humble]. The administration of law should be fair and equitable for all in its application. The rendering of righteous judgment is personified in our “lady justice” who wears a blindfold, holds the sword of judgment in her hand and a weighing scale in the other.
Proverbs 24:24 – “He that saith [speaks; commands; tells] unto the wicked [ungodly; morally wrong; criminal], Thou art righteous [just; lawful; i.e. morally right]; him [the judge] shall the people [men; congregation] curse [i.e. threaten with violence; blaspheme], nations [people; folk] shall abhor [defy; be enraged; be indignant; roar; denounce] him:”
Sad to say, but the reality of verse 24 is all too evident in our nation’s laws, courts and judgments. It appalls me to observe the abuse of government legislators, activist judges, and local politicians determined to protect the purveyors of gross immorality and punish men and women of conscience who dare have moral values and convictions and refuse to bow to depraved ideas of political correctness. Federal, state and civic community leaders have embraced and become the promoters of sodomy, lesbianism, bi-sexuality and transgender while abandoning moral values that have been the basis of marriage, home and family throughout human history. Across America, men and women in positions of leadership have turned their backs on God, rejected His Law and called “righteous” that which God condemns as gross wickedness! The White House, Congress, State Houses, city councils, county commissions and the majority of America’s preachers and churches are guilty of being complicit in this betrayal of God and the people’s trust! Such a betrayal is not only abhorred by the righteous, but also calls for the judgment of God!
Proverbs 24:25 – “But to them that rebuke [reprove; correct; chasten; judge; correct] him [i.e. the wicked] shall be delight [pleasant; sweet; lovely; agreeable], and a good [pleasing; pleasant] blessing shall come [enter; abide] upon them.”
It is the duty and responsibility of God’s people to not only embrace moral convictions, but also to boldly declare the laws and principles of the Word of God. The righteous must not cower in the shadows while justice is abandoned and judgment is perverted. Rebuking those determined to call evil good and good evil will provoke the anger of men, but will be blessed with the joy and blessing God alone can impart!
Proverbs 24:26 – “Every man shall kiss [fasten; touch] his lips [speech; language] that giveth [return; go back to a path already passed] a right [correct; upright; straight; i.e. having integrity] answer [word; speech].”
Verse 26 continues the subject of judgment and commends the man who, under questioning, is a faithful, honest and sincere witness. The “kiss” symbolizes the affection good men have for men of integrity.