Proverbs 14 NASB (select verses)
2 He who walks in his uprightness fears the Lord,
But he who is devious in his ways despises Him.
5 A trustworthy witness will not lie,
But a false witness utters lies.
22 Will they not go astray who devise evil?
But kindness and truth will be to those who devise good.
23 In all labor there is profit,
But mere talk leads only to poverty.
25 A truthful witness saves lives,
But he who utters lies is treacherous.
Here we have a collection of verses which contrast the righteous and the ungodly. And there should be these distinctions between those who genuinely believe in Jesus Christ and those who truly do not. For we are called to be God’s holy people and to be different from the world, so we should be those who are being conformed to the likeness of Christ. We should no longer be those who are conformed to the pattern of this world.
But sadly, in our generation, and in our Christian culture in America, there is not much of a distinction between the church and the world, and between those who profess faith in Jesus Christ and those who do not. But the following should help us to understand, if we don’t already, what those distinctions should be between us who say we love God, who say we believe in Jesus, and who claim that he is the one whom we worship, then in contrast with those who make no profession of faith in Jesus Christ at all.
The righteous should be those who walk in uprightness and who fear the Lord. And to walk in uprightness is to walk with integrity, in honesty, in moral purity, in faithfulness, and in obedience to our Lord. And those who fear the Lord are those who take God/Jesus Christ and his word seriously, who believe what our Lord says to us through his word, and who obey his commandments under the New Covenant. And we are not those who ignore God’s warnings, the ones intended for us and directed to us.
The righteous are trustworthy witnesses who do not lie, at least not on purpose, not deliberately, and not habitually. And if we should tell a lie, we will immediately, or as soon as possible, confess it to whomever we lied to, and then correct it by telling the truth. So we are not those who make lying our practice. For we are those who speak the truth in love to others for their good, for what is necessary. And lies are never kind, but speaking the truth, if in love, that is kindness. And truthful witnesses save lives.
The righteous are also workers. They are those who work for the Lord and who do what he has called us to do. We are not perfect, not yet anyway, nor will we be in this life, in these flesh bodies. But that is never to be used as an excuse for deliberate and habitual sin. For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works which God prepared in advance that we should walk in them (see Ephesians 2:10; Titus 2:11-14).
The ungodly include those who are devious (cunning) in their ways. And they are those who despise the Lord, for they will not submit to the Lord, and they refuse to obey his commands under the New Covenant. Those who are ungodly also include those who are habitual liars, who make lying their practice. They are those whose words cannot be trusted, for they tell outright lies, or they twist the truth, or they cleverly blend truth in with lies, or they are those who withhold the truth when it is owed in order to deceive.
The ungodly also include those who devise evil. So, it isn’t just that they do evil, or that evil is what they practice, but that they plan evil in advance, and they plot evil and how they intend to carry it out, even knowing who they are going to hurt in the process, but without compassion, and without conscience. For they want their sin more than they want anything else. So they are also those who deliberately and habitually sin against God and against others in ways which are destructive, hurtful, callous, and mean.
Now where the godly are those who are doers of the word, the ungodly are sometimes those who will profess faith in Jesus Christ, but it is just talk, mere lip service, but by their lifestyles they deny the very faith they profess with their lips. So, the ungodly are not just those who make no profession of faith in Christ, but they are also those who profess to believe in Jesus but who are still deliberately and habitually sinning against the Lord and who won’t submit to Christ as Lord, won’t forsake their sins, and won’t obey God.
[Matt 7:21-23; Matt 24:9-14; Lu 9:23-26; Rom 1:18-32; Rom 2:6-8; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14,24; Rom 12:1-2; Rom 13:11; 1 Co 6:9-10,19-20; 2 Co 5:10,15,21; 1 Co 1:18; 1 Co 15:1-2; 2 Tim 1:8-9; Heb 9:28; 1 Pet 1:5; Gal 5:16-21; Gal 6:7-8; Eph 2:8-10; Eph 4:17-32; Eph 5:3-6; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-17; 1 Pet 2:24; Tit 2:11-14; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6,24-25; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Heb 3:6,14-15; Heb 10:23-31; Heb 12:1-2; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15]
Jesus Draw Me Ever Nearer
Lyrics by Margaret Becker
Music by Keith Getty
“Jesus draw me ever nearer
As I labor through the storm.
You have called me to this passage,
and I’ll follow, though I’m worn.
Jesus guide me through the tempest;
Keep my spirit staid and sure.
When the midnight meets the morning,
Let me love You even more…
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