Tuesday, June 3, 2014

SIH’s Think On These Things: Proverbs 30:21-23

He layeth up sound wisdom for the righteous (Prov 2:7)

The Proverbs Of Agur: Great Horrors Upon Humanity: Proverbs 30:21-23
21) For three [things] the earth is disquieted, and for four [which] it cannot bear:
22) For a servant when he reigneth; and a fool when he is filled with meat;
23) For an odious [woman] when she is married; and an handmaid that is heir to her mistress.

In this chapter we may have a new author, a man by the name of Agur.  Very little is known about this man but, from the context of our text, it seems as if he is a teacher who is instructing his two students Ithiel and Ucal.  

Agur now gives to us a listing of some things that are great, fearful, burdens upon humanity …

21) For three [things] the earth is disquieted, and for four [which] it cannot bear:
1.  There are three things that cause mankind to violently shake in fear
2.  There are four things that cannot be borne by mankind.

In the following listing, we find things that are heavy burdens that bring fear of great harm upon mankind…

Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of trembling unto all the people round about, when they shall be in the siege both against Judah [and] against Jerusalem.  And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people: all that burden themselves with it shall be cut in pieces, though all the people of the earth be gathered together against it.   (Zechariah 12:2-3)

22) For a servant when he reigneth; and a fool when he is filled with meat;
1. A bondservant given authority to rule over all
2. A person who does not apply the Word to his life and is filled with goods that please his fleshly desires.

Agur understood that:
1.  Rulers who are not prepared to rule
2.  Those who are content rejecting the Word and living to fulfill their fleshly desires…

Both are great dangers to humanity.  In both cases, they work great acts of evil by leading men astray and abusing others for personal satisfaction.

And I will give children [to be] their princes, and babes shall rule over them.  And the people shall be oppressed, every one by another, and every one by his neighbour: the child shall behave himself proudly against the ancient, and the base against the honourable.   (Isaiah 3:4-5)

For I was envious at the foolish, [when] I saw the prosperity of the wicked.  For [there are] no bands in their death: but their strength [is] firm.  They [are] not in trouble [as other] men; neither are they plagued like [other] men.  Therefore pride compasseth them about as a chain; violence covereth them [as] a garment.  Their eyes stand out with fatness: they have more than heart could wish.  They are corrupt, and speak wickedly [concerning] oppression: they speak loftily.  They set their mouth against the heavens, and their tongue walketh through the earth.  Therefore his people return hither: and waters of a full [cup] are wrung out to them.   (Psalms 73:3-10)

23) For an odious [woman] when she is married; and an handmaid that is heir to her mistress.
1.  A hateful, argumentative woman when she enters the marital covenant
2.  A  female bondservant who is given the position of her mistress through inheritance or marriage to the husband of her mistress.

Both of these are harmful to society by causing a breakdown in the family unit: 
1.  The argumentative married person stirs up, and sustains, turmoil and unrest in the family.  Instead of peace, love and happiness ruling in the family, they only produce discord, animosity and grief to control the day.
2.  The bondservant who replaces those who rule over them will possess pride in their hearts and will cause jealousy, hatred and bitterness among others in the family. 
(In many cases, the bondservant was motivated by selfishness and greed. They obtained the inheritance through deception, cunning, and the abuse of those originally meant to receive the inheritance.) 

All of this is working to bring great division and antagonism between the family members.    

[It is] better to dwell in the wilderness, than with a contentious and an angry woman.  (Proverbs 21:19)

He that delicately bringeth up his servant from a child shall have him become [his] son at the length.   (Proverbs 29:21)


When men are abused and mistreated by foolish rulers, they lose the respect and trust of those under their authority.  Instead of working for the good of their subjects leading to peace and satisfaction among the masses, their selfish actions produce only hostility and skepticism.  

The family unit is perhaps the most important tool that can be used to glorify the Lord throughout the ongoing generations of humanity.  When the family unit is hindered, the coming generation is robbed of the opportunity to receive the Word of the Lord through the teachings and examples of their parents.  Instead of the family being a refuge of peace and comfort it is made into a place of turmoil and upheaval. 

These things are a great danger to society and should be feared and abhorred by all mankind.

By God’s grace, let us all study these proverbs diligently, giving them the value that they deserve.

May the Lord bless us as we receive this sound wisdom and then “Think On These Things”.

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