On Life and Conduct
Proverbs 23; I die daily devotional.
1 When you sit down to dine with a ruler, Consider carefully what is before you, 2 And put a knife to your throat If you are a man of great appetite.
I remember reading when Jesus was presented with the delicacies of a ruler, those temptations of the devil in the wilderness; what that ruler underestimated was the God in front of him in human flesh. Satan, without realizing it, had put a knife to his own throat when using the delicacies of God to persuade God’s Son—the Lamb of God—for worship. Those delicacies never belonged to the ruler of this world. So when we are presented with an opportunity that amounts to great power, we need to consider the “who” that influences such an opportunity. If we don’t, and our appetite is ambitious for wealth … we’re in danger of slitting our own throats as truth reveals the nature of our hearts. Don’t buy into the ruler of this worlds’ wealth because it’s fleeting and foolish. Purchase truth, and do not sell it, get wisdom and instruction and understanding!
Knife to throat
“It is within my capacity—and come to think of it, opportunity in my current industry—to advance to the highest positions of entrepreneurship, but to what gain?”
“Who influences these desires?”
“How great is my appetite, and for what?”
Those questions shift and shape the world around me into what I desire. The ruler raises his eyebrows in haste, “Well! What will it be?” Knowing my self-conscious issues; my heart begins to race as my mind considers, but my palm is sweating, the knife is slipping. I can feel the sweat dribbling down my neck or, “is it blood” I wonder. The ruler slides the plate over, “Eat!”, he says. But I know … there’ll be no turning back. To eat this food would mean my sacrifice and allegiance to … myself. The ruler is me, and the offer on the table is not my escape from hell, but the opportunity to cure death for all to live. Thoughts are racing; “no more cancer, no more oppression, no more diversity, no more debt, etc.”. The ruler’s eyes are my eyes, and their gleaming; the words … compelling; my mouth … watering. The deal sounds a lot like scripture, how could it be wrong?
Some questions to think about:
- What is the deal of my life and at what cost?
- Who and where is my allegiance?
- What does my heart reveal?
- Who is my ruler and why?
1 When you sit down to dine with a ruler, Consider carefully what is before you, 2 And put a knife to your throat If you are a man of great appetite. 3 Do not desire his delicacies, For it is deceptive food. 4 Do not weary yourself to gain wealth, Cease from your consideration of it. 5 When you set your eyes on it, it is gone. For wealth certainly makes itself wings Like an eagle that flies toward the heavens. 6 Do not eat the bread of a selfish man, Or desire his delicacies; 7 For as he thinks within himself, so he is. He says to you, “Eat and drink!” But his heart is not with you. 8 You will vomit up the morsel you have eaten, And waste your compliments. 9 Do not speak in the hearing of a fool, For he will despise the wisdom of your words. 10 Do not move the ancient boundary Or go into the fields of the fatherless, 11 For their Redeemer is strong; He will plead their case against you. 12 Apply your heart to discipline And your ears to words of knowledge. 13 Do not hold back discipline from the child, Although you strike him with the rod, he will not die. 14 You shall strike him with the rod And rescue his soul from Sheol. 15 My son, if your heart is wise, My own heart also will be glad; 16 And my inmost being will rejoice When your lips speak what is right. 17 Do not let your heart envy sinners, But live in the fear of the LORD always. 18 Surely there is a future, And your hope will not be cut off. 19 Listen, my son, and be wise, And direct your heart in the way. 20 Do not be with heavy drinkers of wine, Or with gluttonous eaters of meat; 21 For the heavy drinker and the glutton will come to poverty, And drowsiness will clothe one with rags. 22 Listen to your father who begot you, And do not despise your mother when she is old. 23 Buy truth, and do not sell it, Get wisdom and instruction and understanding. 24 The father of the righteous will greatly rejoice, And he who sires a wise son will be glad in him. 25 Let your father and your mother be glad, And let her rejoice who gave birth to you. 26 Give me your heart, my son, And let your eyes delight in my ways. 27 For a harlot is a deep pit And an adulterous woman is a narrow well. 28 Surely she lurks as a robber, And increases the faithless among men. 29 Who has woe? Who has sorrow? Who has contentions? Who has complaining? Who has wounds without cause? Who has redness of eyes? 30 Those who linger long over wine, Those who go to taste mixed wine. 31 Do not look on the wine when it is red, When it sparkles in the cup, When it goes down smoothly; 32 At the last it bites like a serpent And stings like a viper. 33 Your eyes will see strange things And your mind will utter perverse things. 34 And you will be like one who lies down in the middle of the sea, Or like one who lies down on the top of a mast. 35 “They struck me, but I did not become ill; They beat me, but I did not know it. When shall I awake? I will seek another drink.”
- Matthew 4:1 Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. 2 And after He had fasted forty days and forty nights, He then became hungry. 3 And the tempter came and said to Him, “If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread.” 4 But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘MAN SHALL NOT LIVE ON BREAD ALONE, BUT ON EVERY WORD THAT PROCEEDS OUT OF THE MOUTH OF GOD.’” 5 Then the devil *took Him into the holy city and had Him stand on the pinnacle of the temple, 6 and *said to Him, “If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down; for it is written, ‘HE WILL COMMAND HIS ANGELS CONCERNING YOU’; and ‘ON their HANDS THEY WILL BEAR YOU UP, SO THAT YOU WILL NOT STRIKE YOUR FOOT AGAINST A STONE.’” 7 Jesus said to him, “On the other hand, it is written, ‘YOU SHALL NOT PUT THE LORD YOUR GOD TO THE TEST.’” 8 Again, the devil *took Him to a very high mountain and *showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory; 9 and he said to Him, “All these things I will give You, if You fall down and worship me.” 10 Then Jesus *said to him, “Go, Satan! For it is written, ‘YOU SHALL WORSHIP THE LORD YOUR GOD, AND SERVE HIM ONLY.’” 11 Then the devil *left Him; and behold, angels came and began to minister to Him.
- John 12:31 Now judgment is upon this world; now the ruler of this world will be cast out.
- John 16:11 and concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world has been judged.