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(#129) The Proverbs of Solomon 17:20-Whom Do You Trust?

Since God Created humans, only God can provide specific understanding of human behavior. God gave Solomon Divine Wisdom (1 Kings Chapters 3 and 10) to explain what and why behavior is as it is, and Proverbs 10:1-24:34 are randomly written, as if they were Solomon’s judgments about individual cases brought to him, or simply God-given explanations about life. New Testament passages may help see the continuation of Wisdom offered through Jesus Christ.

Proverbs 17:20: “He who has a deceitful heart finds no good, And he who has a perverse tongue falls into evil.”

The “deceitful heart” knows how easily “truth” can be ignored, manipulated, changed into a lie, or kept back to deceive. Then the “deceitful heart” concludes that everyone else is doing the same, thus, concludes no one is to be trusted! Only God and His Truth can judge the waywardness in a heart: “The heart is deceitful above all things, And desperately wicked; Who can know it? I, the LORD, search the heart, I test the mind, Even to give every man according to his ways, According to the fruit of his doings” (Jeremiah 17:9-10). Even in the New Testament, Paul taught this: “This testimony is true. Therefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith, not giving heed to Jewish fables and commandments of men who turn from the truth. To the pure all things are pure, but to those who are defiled and unbelieving nothing is pure; but even their mind and conscience are defiled” (Titus 1:13-15). People who are dishonest with the truth are quick to assume the worst in everyone else! It’s difficult, or even impossible, for some people to believe that anyone can be truthful and pure in motive, but Christians are exactly that. “But you have not so learned Christ, if indeed you have heard Him and have been taught by Him, as the truth is in Jesus: that you put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, and be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness. Therefore, putting away lying, ‘Let each one of you speak truth with his neighbor,’ for we are members of one another” (Ephesians 4:20-25).

However, even Christians can be misled by: those who “pervert the gospel of Christ” (Galatians 1:7); “preach Christ even from envy and strife” (Philippians 1:15); “false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Lord who bought them, and bring on themselves swift destruction” (2 Peter 2:1); “the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting” (Ephesians 4:14); “the deceitful lusts” (Ephesians 4:22). Deceitfulness is a reality, but so, also, is truthfulness! Jesus said: “For this cause I was born, and for this cause I have come into the world, that I should bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice” (John 18:37). Pilate revealed his political dishonesty when he replied, “What is truth?” (John 18:38). Conversion to Jesus Christ is the cure for the “deceitful heart.” “Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit in sincere love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart, having been born again, not of corruptible seed but incorruptible, through the word of God which lives and abides forever” (1 Peter 1:22-23). “But when they believed Philip as he preached the things concerning the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, both men and women were baptized” (Acts 8:12)

Do you believe this?

All Scriptures and comments are based upon the New King James Version, unless otherwise noted.

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