Proverbs chapter 17; I die daily devotional.
1 Better is a dry morsel and quietness with it
Than a house full of feasting with strife.
A “dry morsel”, what?! … Okay, after uh-little digging was able to make sense of it.
I think back before I was married, a bachelor in the small city of Wichita Falls Tx, sitting in my living room on the couch with a dry morsel of popcorn watching the movie 2012; …turns out the Mayans were off about 8 years, they must’ve meant 2020, not 2012! And they didn’t even warn us to wear masks; murderers (being facetious)! But there I was… all alone… beside myself. The point is I was at peace in the quietness of my life at that time, living the American dream. And then I got married…
2 A servant who acts wisely will rule
over a son who acts shamefully, And will share
in the inheritance among brothers.
3 The refining pot is for silver and the furnace
for gold, But the LORD tests hearts.
4 An evildoer listens to wicked lips;
A liar pays attention to a destructive tongue.
5 He who mocks the poor taunts his Maker;
He who rejoices at calamity will not go unpunished.
While that was supposed to be funny, there’s truth to the negative connotation because… well… the proverb says—a house full of feasting with strife.
You know, a manual doesn’t come with your spouse at marriage. I mean, look! I tried finding an SOP once I was committed, and not even the Bible was helping me figure out how to work this thing. It was crazy, I’m telling yuh, don’t do it! “Run! Run away!” That’s actually what the SOP said! The apostle Paul does give a fair warning, but what the heck… How was I supposed to know that sex wasn’t all there was to it, that there’s actually a WHOLE LOT MORE to marriage than the sex part? “I wanna redo, that’s not fair!” No, not really, of course, but the sad reality did hit us hard at the first few years of our marriage. I enjoyed alcohol; Laura did not. I wanted to eat whenever and wherever as a family; Laura wanted to eat as a family at the kitchen table at a specific time. I wanted sex everyday; Laura wanted quality time everyday.
The challenges of marriage go on into eternity and the information is a mountain to explore, but once the mystery of marriage is learned, prepared, and decided… There are no words to describe the value and ecstasy of such a gift as marriage!
6 Grandchildren are the crown of old men,
And the glory of sons is their fathers.
7 Excellent speech is not fitting for a fool,
Much less are lying lips to a prince.
8 A bribe is a charm in the sight of its owner;
Wherever he turns, he prospers.
9 He who conceals a transgression seeks love,
But he who repeats a matter
separates intimate friends.
10 A rebuke goes deeper into one who
has understanding Than a hundred
blows into a fool.
As I dug into the scriptures, I also found an excellent commentary, (I thought) by Matthew Henry:
1. Those that live in unity and quietness, not only free from jealousies and animosities, but vying in mutual endearments, and obliging to one another, live very comfortably, though they are low in the world, work hard and fare hard, though they have but each of them a morsel, and that a dry morsel. There may be peace and quietness where there are not three meals a day, provided there by a joint satisfaction in God’s providence and a mutual satisfaction in each other’s prudence. Holy love may be found in a cottage.
2. Those that live in contention, that are always jarring and brawling, and reflecting upon one another, though they have plenty of dainties, a house full of sacrifices, live uncomfortably; they cannot expect the blessing of God upon them and what they have, nor can they have any true relish of their enjoyments, much less any peace in their own consciences. Love will sweeten a dry morsel, but strife will sour and embitter a house full of sacrifices. A little of the leaven of malice will leaven all the enjoyments.
And I couldn’t help but feel bias, and connected to it because of what the meaning of the word providence means for me personally, but in the commentary I found—”There may be peace and quietness where there are not three meals a day, provided there by a joint satisfaction in God’s providence and a mutual satisfaction in each other’s prudence. Holy love may be found in a cottage.“
11 A rebellious man seeks only evil,
So a cruel messenger will be sent against him.
12 Let a man meet a bear robbed of her cubs,
Rather than a fool in his folly.
13 He who returns evil for good,
Evil will not depart from his house.
14 The beginning of strife is like letting out water,
So abandon the quarrel before it breaks out.
15 He who justifies the wicked and he
who condemns the righteous, Both of them
alike are an abomination to the LORD.
ABANDON THE QUARREL
Learning how to abandon the quarrel in marriage and or all-in-encompassing relationships is quite the reward—not that we abandon people or discussions—because information is invaluable to the relationships we mean to build.
Although… Don’t get me wrong; there are people of ‘family and friends’ that you don’t need to be in a relationship with; for instance, the devil. Laura and I watched this movie, “22 July”—based on a true story—where a right-wing extremist in Norway murders 77 people in 2011; planted a bomb that killed 8 just outside the office of Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg in Regjeringskvartalet in central Oslo; then shooting 69 people (mostly teens) at a youth camp on the island of Utoya, 25 miles northwest of Oslo.
(A link is provided at the end of this blog under Resources [not that you’re stupid or anything] to read up on the story in more detail. Hmmm… Hey! That actually gives me some ideas and ways to develop my posts! Anyway—*sorry*)
The question is why, why did Anders Behring Breivik murder 77 people?
According to the resource provided in this blog, a section of it tells us that Ander believed himself to be a “savior of Christianity”:
“Hours before the attacks, Breivik e-mailed a 1,500-page manifesto to 5,700 people, titled 2083 – A European Declaration of Independence. In the document, Breivik attacks multiculturalism and the “threat” of Muslim immigration to Norway, as well as Marxism and the Norwegian Labor Party. Breivik copied large sections of the Unabomber manifesto. Breivik writes that he is a “savior of Christianity,” and claims to be part of an order called the “Knight’s Templar.” Breivik was active on anti-Muslim websites.”
16 Why is there a price in the hand of a fool
to buy wisdom, When he has no sense?
17 A friend loves at all times,
And a brother is born for adversity.
18 A man lacking in sense pledges
And becomes guarantor in the
presence of his neighbor.
19 He who loves transgression loves strife;
He who raises his door seeks destruction.
20 He who has a crooked mind finds no good,
And he who is perverted in his
language falls into evil.
Now if that information is accurate about Ander—considering his belief—might be thought of as brother in the faith (a family member of Christ Jesus our Lord and Savior). But is he?! And is he someone to build a relationship with? Well of course “…No!”, and “…No”—would be my answer—for reasons that the apostle Paul teaches the (1st) Corinthians in chapters 5 and 6, “…5:12 For what have I to do with judging outsiders? Do you not judge those who are within the church? 13 But those who are outside, God judges. REMOVE THE WICKED MAN FROM AMONG YOURSELVES. …” .
The severity of Anders’ punishment is yet to be experienced; being convicted for “life” (21 years) in a jail cell is not punishment for the devil, it’s his home. However, there is a punishment that God describes as His vengeance (Romans 12:18, Hebrews 10:30) that Ander will experience. Ander made himself out to be a god in opposition against God by giving himself over to do the devil’s work—filled with the heart of Cain, who killed his innocent brother Able (Gen 4)—possessed by an eternal outcome of punishment according to Jude and Matthew 25:
Jude 1:7 just as Sodom and Gomorrah and the cities around them, since they in the same way as these indulged in gross immorality and went after strange flesh, are exhibited as an example in undergoing the punishment of eternal fire.
Matthew 25:46 These will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”
21 He who sires a fool does so to his sorrow,
And the father of a fool has no joy.
22 A joyful heart is good medicine,
But a broken spirit dries up the bones.
23 A wicked man receives a bribe from
the bosom To pervert the ways of justice.
24 Wisdom is in the presence of the one
who has understanding, But the eyes of a
fool are on the ends of the earth.
25 A foolish son is a grief to his father
And bitterness to her who bore him.
ways of justice
If we are a people of Christianity that behave as these proverbs contrasts’ the wicked from the good, are we then not testing God at His Word by our wicked behavior? As I write these final words… I think and examine my life …how is my faith discerned and judged by my fellow believers in Christ Jesus? What darkness might be about me that need be exposed—that hasn’t been exposed already? I ask myself the most deepest question I can fathom…
26 It is also not good to fine the righteous,
Nor to strike the noble for their uprightness.
27 He who restrains his words has knowledge,
And he who has a cool spirit
is a man of understanding.
28 Even a fool, when he keeps silent,
is considered wise; When he closes his lips,
he is considered prudent.
“Is jail my home?“
Anders Behring Breivik (the devil at work)