A Proverb a Day

Many years ago, as a young Christian believer, I used to read one chapter of Proverbs each day.  The Old Testament book of Proverbs contains 31 chapters.  One for each day of the month.  Lately I’ve been working on getting back into that habit, because Proverbs contains so much practical wisdom and truth.

Today is the 30th day of July, so I read the 30th chapter of Proverbs this morning.
There is so much there to think on. I’m going to post some of the passages that jumped out at me today in hope of encouraging you to spend time in Proverbs as well.

Who hath ascended up into heaven, or descended? who hath gathered the wind in his fists? who hath bound the waters in a garment? who hath established all the ends of the earth? what is his name, and what is his son’s name, if thou canst tell?  Proverbs 30:4

Every word of God is pure: he is a shield unto them that put their trust in him.  Add thou not unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar.  Proverbs 30:5&6

There is a generation that are pure in their own eyes, and yet is not washed from their filthiness.  Proverbs 30:12

The eye that mocketh at his father, and despiseth to obey his mother, the ravens of the valley shall pick it out, and the young eagles shall eat it.  Proverbs 30:17

Such is the way of an adulterous woman; she eateth, and wipeth her mouth, and saith, I have done no wickedness.  Proverbs 30:20

………let the word of Christ dwell in you richly………

The Work of the Holy Spirit Today Part VI – Strengthened in the Inner Man – A Study in Ephesians

For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, THAT he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man;  THAT Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; THAT ye, being rooted and grounded in love, May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, THAT ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.  Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen.  Ephesians 3:14-21

For this cause……..Verses 2-13 are parenthetical.  Paul repeats this phrase from verse 1 to continue his line of thinking from Ephesians chapter 2 concerning the riches believers have in Christ.  (Paul, the prisoner of Jesus Christ for you Gentiles, see vs 1), bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ (not necessarily our physical position, but certainly the submission of our will to Him)**, of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named (a reference to Christian believers – Jew and Gentile alike).

That……There are no less than four that‘s which are Paul’s requests unto to God for his fellow believers – Jew and Gentile.   The THAT’s above are like falling dominoes.  Fulfillment of the first spills onto the the next and so on.   We will concern ourselves only with the first that, which will teach us something more of the work of the Holy Spirit in the church today. 

……….that he would grant you,……..The word translated grant is a derivative of the Greek word didomi which simply means to give.*  The Giver is God, the recipient of the gift is the believer who apart from God is without this gift.  Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above,….James 1:17.

.……according to the riches of his glory..……The word for riches is the Greek word ploutos which is used in the NT of (I) material “riches,” used evilly, and (II) of spiritual and moral “riches,” possessed by God and exercised towards men.*  The latter (II) are rich benefits, wealth, or abundant blessing which flow from God or Christ.*** 

……..to be strengthened with might……The meaning for to be strengthened is self explanatory.  The Greek word used here is from the root word krataiow which basically means to be strengthened,* as it is translated. The important observation is that it is in the passive voice, meaning the subject (believers) are being acted upon.   This is not a strength that can be mustered up by the individual.  The source of this strength is God Himself.  

……….by his Spirit…….The English translation, by his Spirit, does not adequately express what is contained in this phrase in the Greek language.  The word eis is included in the Greek, but its meaning is not conveyed in the translation.  It can mean one, only, one virtually by union, one and the same.  Another form of this word includes the meaning of oneness and unity.  This word emphasizes the unity of the Godhead (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit).  It emphasizes  the one and only Spirit of God as opposed to the many spirits in the world.

……….in the inner man…….This is not outward physical strength that Paul is petitioning for his fellow believers.  It is a supernatural inner strength that enables a believer to be delivered from the power of sin after he/she realizes his/her own strength is not sufficient .  It is a supernatural inner strength that enables a believer to stand alone when all others including family are opposed.  It is a supernatural inner strength that enables a believer to be sustained when all other avenues of resources have been depleted.   It is what sustains when the will is broken, the physical is exhausted, and the emotions have run dry.  It is not to be merchandized.  It is  for our sustaining power and for His glory.

He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength.  Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall:  

But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.  

Isaiah 40:29-31

*Vine’s Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words – pgs 265, 533-534, & 605;  **MacArthur Study Bible NKJV – notes on Ephesians 3:14;  ***The Analytical Greek Lexicon, Zondervan Publishing House, Sixth Printing 1970 – pg 330.

Absent From the Body – Present With the Lord

According to Vine’s Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words, thanatos, “death” (as a noun) is used in Scripture of: (a) the separation of the soul (the spiritual part of man) from the body (the material part), the latter ceasing to function and turning to dust,……(b) the separation of man from God; Adam died on the day he disobeyed God, Gen. 2:17, and hence all mankind are born in the same spiritual condition, Rom. 5:12, 14, 17, 21, from which, however, those who believe in Christ are delivered, John 5:24; I John 3:14.  “Death” is the opposite of life; it never denotes nonexistence.  As spiritual life is “conscious existence in communion with God,” so spiritual “death” is “conscious existence in separation from God.”

Physical death is the separation of the soul or spirit from the body.  What does physical death hold for the Christian believer?  The apostle Paul declares; We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.  2 Corinthians 5:8

Are you a Christian believer?  Are you concerned about death and dying?  Are you troubled at the thought of dying?  Physical death is the second best thing that can happen to a believer.  

Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fullness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.  Psalm 16:11

The apostle Paul expresses his desire and purpose this way:  For I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better: Nevertheless to abide in the flesh is more needful for you.  And having this confidence, I know that I shall abide and continue with you all for your furtherance and joy of faith;  Philippians 1:23 – 25

……….let the word of Christ dwell in you richly………

Remember Now Thy Creator

Give of your best to the Master;
Give of the strength of your youth;
Throw your soul’s fresh, glowing ardor
Into the battle for truth.
Jesus has set the example,
Dauntless was He, young and brave;
Give Him your loyal devotion;
Give Him the best that you have.


Give of your best to the Master;
Give of the strength of your youth;
Clad in salvation’s full armor,
Join in the battle for truth.

Give of your best to the Master;
Give Him first place in your heart;
Give Him first place in your service;
Consecrate every part.
Give, and to you will be given;
God His beloved Son gave;
Gratefully seeking to serve Him,
Give Him the best that you have.

Give of your best to the Master;
Naught else is worthy His love;
He gave Himself for your ransom,
Gave up His glory above.
Laid down His life without murmur,
You from sin’s ruin to save;
Give Him your heart’s adoration;
Give Him the best that you have.

Give of Your Best to the Master By Howard B. Grose  Pub. 1902

Remember now thy Creator in the days of thy youth…Ecclesiastes 12:1