Sunday, June 27, 2010

Wise Man or Scoffer?

Proverbs 9:8: “Do not reprove a scoffer, lest he hate you; rebuke a wise man, and he will love you." 

Ecclesiastes 7:5 "It is better to hear the rebuke of the wise, than for a man to hear the song of fools."

No one likes to be called out on something that they are doing wrong. We don't intentionally seek out to do wrong, but our need to justify our actions, to protect our image and ego, to show that we are the victim will ultimately numb our conscience to the point where we cannot receive correction from another (even someone we love). Yet we all know that we need correction, because we don't want to do something wrong if it can be shown that through sound counsel and the Word of God that it is in fact wrong.

The question we need to ask ourselves: when it comes to receiving correction from others, am I a scoffer or a wise man? 

Apart from the work of Christ in our lives, we all act as fools and hate the rebuker. But through the work of Christ in our lives, God matures us and enables us to be wise in our choices over difficult decisions and in our responses to the endless challenges we face. Romans 8:28 teaches us that God causes all things to work together for the good of those that love Him, that are called according to His purposes. That includes His use of discipline and rebuke in our lives. In Revelation 3:19 Jesus says that "as many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. Therefore be zealous and repent." Only when we realize that God loves us, that He is faithful to complete the good work that He began in us (Phil. 1:6), and that discipline in our life brings about His work in our lives, only after we realize all of this will we be able to rejoice when we are disciplined and truly love the person who has shown us the error of our way.

Praise God for those who have the courage to confront us in humility before God to bring about the correction and discipline we need in our lives to mature us and draw us ever closer to Christ Jesus.

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