Proverbs 22
Proverbs 24

Proverbs 23

  Zealous

A Future Hope For The Zealous

Scripture

Proverbs 23:17-18

17 Do not let your heart envy sinners,
    but always be zealous for the fear of the Lord.
18 There is surely a future hope for you,
    and your hope will not be cut off.

Observation – What does it say?

In this 15th of 30 ‘Sayings of the Wise,’ we see the wise way to respond to sinners that seem to be happy and prospering. Although sinners may seem to be enjoying themselves and having fun in their sin, don’t forget the long-term consequences! If you remain passionate about serving and honoring God then you have a future worth being excited about. But those who indulge in sin with no fear of God will have their hope cut off.

Understanding – What does it mean?

In Psalm 73, Asaph expresses his frustration. The wicked and sinful seem to be doing great. They are having a blast, are healthy and strong and seem to be without worry. All the while he is struggling. Things were difficult for him and he felt as though he had kept his heart pure for nothing. He began to envy the wicked as he wrestled with these thoughts. Then he says this:

Psalm 73:16-17

16 When I tried to understand all this,
    it troubled me deeply
17 till I entered the sanctuary of God;
    then I understood their final destiny.

Once he entered God’s presence, everything that weighed on his shoulders was lifted and it all made sense. Their final destiny is destruction while the final destiny of the righteous is being in the glorious presence of God!

Life Application

Don’t envy sinners or their pleasures. In the end, your pleasure and reward will be far greater and will last for eternity! Don’t grow tired of serving God and living for him!

God, when things get difficult remind us of the eternal reward for those who stay faithful to the end. When temptation to sin creeps in, remind us of the long-term consequences. May we always be zealous for the fear of the Lord! Amen.

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