Friday, May 23, 2014

Proverbs 16:2-6 -- On Figuring Ourselves Out

"All the ways of a man are clean in his own eyes; but the Lord weigheth the spirits.
Commit thy works unto the Lord, and thy thoughts shall be established.
The Lord hath made all things for himself: yea, even the wicked for the day of evil.
Every one that is proud in heart is an abomination to the Lord: though hand join in hand, he shall not be unpunished.
By mercy and truth iniquity is purged: and by the fear of the Lord men depart from evil."
Proverbs 16:2-6

This is interesting to me because it seems to be helping us figure ourselves out. :)  The first verse is saying that we can justify about anything to ourselves, but that God is more discerning.  Then it goes on and tells us that if we dedicate our physical actions to God, that our minds will follow.  So... fake it till you make it is a gospel principle, right? :)  (As long as we are really sincere in wanting to learn from God and change... I don't think planning to fake it forever works.)
The part talking about God making all things for himself, including the wicked... that part is hard.  What I think is that it means that, even when we do wicked things, it doesn't destroy the work of God.  We still have to overcome it and learn goodness if we want to be saved... but we can rest easy about our actions somehow destroying God's work.  They can't.  He uses even the bad things to accomplish the ultimate salvation of mankind.  An example would perhaps be when Korihor was killed by the Zoramites.  The Zoramites weren't being good and doing as God asked when they trampled him, but what they did fit into God's plan in saving the people who had been deceived by Korihor, and in showing the community that they needed to do something about the Zoramites.  God didn't want or make Korihor or the Zoramites do what they did, but he could still anticipate it all and fit it into his plan.  God is amazing like that. :)
As the verses continue, we see that in addition to committing our works to the Lord, we need to avoid pride.  Even if we get together an army or a whole community (like the Zoramites), we can't overcome the Lord's will.  We need to work on our humility, and realize that God always knows better than we do... that he is the source of truth.  If we aren't humble enough to learn from him and start thinking that we know best, then we lose the path and we can't get to where we want to go.
I love the last verse, as it continues our lesson.  "By mercy and truth iniquity is purged."  ... That is how we rid ourselves of the inner darkness.  We have to accept God's gift of mercy, and learn the truth.  And through respect for the Lord, and recognizing his power and that he is the one with the answers and we are not... that is the way we learn to depart from evil.  Some good lessons for today.  Let's heed them, and learn how to become our best selves, through trusting God and learning from him.

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