Scripture Reading – Proverbs 27-29
Our Scripture reading continues in Proverbs, chapters 27, 28, and 29. For the sake of brevity, I will limit today’s devotional commentary to Proverbs 27:1-3.
Proverbs 27:1 – “Boast not thyself of to morrow; for thou knowest not what a day may bring forth.” [note – Luke 12:19, 20; James 4:13]
What would you do today, if you knew there was no tomorrow? What would change in your priorities? Who would you call or visit to express a word of gratitude or affection? Who would you seek out to make right a wrong? Who would you forgive, putting off bitterness and embrace in love?
Procrastination is a terrible malady of man! Too many of us go through life putting off to tomorrow what should and could have been done today! I believe that is the point of Proverbs 27:1. Do not defer, put off, or procrastinate to tomorrow the good that you might do today.
Lost sinners procrastinate confessing their sin and trusting Jesus Christ as Savior (Hebrews 4:7; Acts 24:25; 2 Corinthians 6:2). Believers put off confessing their sin, serving others, singing praises, teaching, and witnessing to lost loved ones, only to be filled with remorse when they realize there will be no tomorrow.
Challenge: Make a list of things you hope to accomplish today, or one day, and set dates and goals for accomplishing them before you face no tomorrows. Turn off the television, stop surfing the internet, disengage from social media, and redeem today as though it were your last—it may be!
James 4:14, 17 – “14 Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away…17 Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin.”
Proverbs 27:2 – There are few things as repulsive as one who glories in boasting their own achievements.
Proverbs 27:2 – “Let another man praise [boast; celebrate; sing your praises] thee, and not thine own mouth; a stranger, and not thine own lips [speech].”
The Book of Proverbs is a king’s instructions to his son who would one day be king. Fearing that his son’s heart might be lifted up with pride, Solomon urged him to be a young man whose demeanor was one of humility.
Having been born into a household of wealth and privilege, one might imagine the temptation for a young prince to be carried away by the grandeur of the palace, with servants ever ready to do his bidding. Solomon taught his son that it is uncomely for a man to praise himself [or as some say, “to beat his own drum”].
Few things are as repulsive as a man or woman who crow about their own achievements. Unfortunately, it is the nature of men to “proclaim every one his own goodness” (Proverbs 20:6). Such a man has forgotten the raw clay out of which he was taken. Though praise and accolades are rewarding, they ring hollow when expressed by one’s own lips.
Why is a braggadocio, self-asserting spirit so repugnant to God?
Because it is the spirit of pride and not the Spirit of God.
Think about it: How much of your conversations with others is focused on yourself? Are you given to bragging and boasting? Look at your social media page to find the answer.
Proverbs 27:3 – A fool’s wrath is a great burden to all.
Proverbs 27:3 – “A stone [building stone] is heavy, and the sand weighty [burden]; but a fool’s [silly, immoral] wrath [anger; indignation] is heavier [more grievous] than them both [a fools wrath takes a physical and emotional toll heavier than building stones and sand].”
What was Solomon thinking when he observed that the wrath of a fool is heavier than both a heavy stone and weighty sand?
Having undertaken the construction of the Temple and his palace, Solomon knew well the physical weight of sand and stone. The king was familiar with the design and use of heavy stones that were required for constructing an enduring place of worship for Israel.
The heavy stones mentioned in Proverbs 27:3 are most likely the great building blocks used in constructing the Temple and other public buildings. Estimates are that some of the stones weighed from a few tons to as much as 160 tons. Sand, like building blocks, is also heavy in volume and a great burden to move.
The fool is the subject of Proverbs 27:3. He is not intellectually deficient. This fool is one that is spiritually defiant, morally corrupt, and a hater of wisdom and instruction. He opposes God (Psalm 14:1; 53:1), hates spiritual truth (Proverbs 1:22), and is a grief and heaviness to his father and mother (Proverbs 10:1; 17:25).
Solomon observes that the wrath of a fool takes a physical toll and is heavier than building stones and sand. How so?
While stones and sand are physically heavy and difficult to move, the weight of a fool’s wrath is both a physical burden and an emotional weight to his family, friends and acquaintances.
Without question, the wrath of a fool takes a physical toll on all who associate with him. Many are the parents who go to early graves with heavy hearts, emotionally overwhelmed and physically devastated by the distress of a fool’s wrath.
Copyright 2020 – Travis D. Smith