Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Feeling Righteous?

I've often avoided books in the bible like Proverbs, mostly because I thought it was a list of do and don't, and I don't have a very teachable  spirit sometimes, so I though, "what's in there for me to learn, I already know everything..."  Just kidding, I don't think I know everything, but I don't have a teachable spirit.
 Anyway, Jesus isn't really about a lists of do's and don't so, I guess if the Bible is about Him, there must be something else in there other that that list I suspected it was.  I got part of chapter 8 of Proverbs sent to me in an email today so I read it.  Wow, I never noticed how clearly Jesus spoke in the Old Testament, I mean I know it's all about him, but sometimes I struggle to see Him in there.  Not today.  "Chapter 8 is Jesus speaking about Himself through the writer of Proverbs as clearly as he was speaking to John or Peter or anyone else that hung around with him in person.  So cool, listen to Jesus here,

I was there when he set up the skies,
when he drew a circle in the ocean to make a place for the land.
I was there when he put the clouds in the sky
and made the deep springs flow.
I was there when he set the limits on the sea
to make it stop where he said.
I was there when he laid the foundations of the earth.
I grew up as a child by his side,
laughing and playing all the time.
I played in the world he made
and enjoyed the people he put there.

“Now, children, listen to me.
If you follow my ways,
you will be happy too.
Listen to my teaching and be wise;
don’t ignore what I say.
Whoever waits at my door
and listens for me will be blessed.
Those who find me find life,
and the Lord will reward them.
But those who do not find me put their lives in danger.
Whoever hates me loves death.” (Proverbs 8: 27-36 ERV)

So here I thought, some smart dude, probably named Solomon, wrote down some instruction about what I had to do in order to have a decent life and be ok with the Big Man.  Wrong.

Proverbs is not about what I have to do to be a righteous person and ok with God.  Proverbs is about what Jesus will do if we depend on Him, not ourselves.  Maybe that's not mind blowing to you, but it is to me.

Let me try for a minute to show you why my mind has be "Burted".  I'll just take a few random ones and show you what I mean.  Proverbs 13:6, "Righteousness guards the man of integrity, but wickendness overthrows the sinner".  Righteousness = Jesus, nothing we do makes us righteous, He does.  So Jesus guards the man of integrity (that just means someone who stands up for what he believes in, in this case Jesus), but wickness overthrows the sinner (that's everyone who doesn't know Jesus yet).

Proverbs 10:16, "the wages of the righteous brings them life, the income of the wicked brings them punishment"  Sounds really similar to Romans 6:23 right, "the wages of sin is death but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus."  So those who have recieved Jesus free gift are righteous because of His free gift, not because of their own trying to be righteous or right with God.  But the wicked = someone who hasn't revieved that free gift yet gets punishment = death.  You get paid with life when you receive his gift, you get paid with death when you turn it down.

I think the languages messes with us sometimes, it seems a bit harsh that someone who hasn't taken Jesus up on this free gift yet be called "wicked" but scripture says that anyone who doesn't take that free gift is against God, their sin, which we all have keeps them separated, and steals our life.  

Let's try one more just for fun.
Proverbs 14:33, "Wisdom rests in the heart of a man of understanding,
but it makes itself known even in the midst of fools."

Break it down..., Wisdom (which comes from Jesus through the Holy Spirit) rest in the heart of a man of understanding, so if you get that Jesus is everything, and what he offers is free and you don't have to earn right standing with God so you're free, that will make itself known even around people that don't know that yet.  Is that crazy or what??  You living in the freedom of the Grace Jesus gave you, will cause others to see and know Jesus.  

So there you go, you're mind blowing reality for the day.  Jesus is the one who has done everything, He's fulfilled all the Laws and delivered on the promises and paid all the debts that sin has racked up on your behalf.  And now you're free to live in the reality that he's going to keep on keeping on so that all those things in proverbs and rest of the bible can be reality in your life.  I hope you'll let Him show you, I hope you'll let Him do his thing.

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