(#105) The Proverbs of Solomon 16:7-Real “Peace Accords”

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 16:7: “When a man’s ways please the LORD, He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him.”

Obeying God’s Will toward our “enemies” is the straightest, simplest, most successful method for producing “peace” than any and every plan and method ever tried before in the history of mankind! Under Moses’ Law: “Three times in the year all your men shall appear before the Lord, the LORD God of Israel. For I will cast out the nations before you and enlarge your borders; neither will any man covet your land when you go up to appear before the LORD your God three times in the year” (Exodus 34:23-24). Israelite men had to journey three times a year to the place where God’s sacrifices were to be offered, but God promised no one would “covet” (and therefore steal) their land while they were gone to do God’s Will! After the Israelites had settled in the Promised Land, had kings, then divided, the king of the Southern Kingdom knew “the fear of the LORD fell on all the kingdoms of the lands that were around Judah, so that they did not make war against Jehoshaphat” (2 Chronicles 17:10). Under the Law of Jesus Christ, though persecution had arisen against the church of Christ (Acts 8:1-4), there came a time when “the churches throughout all Judea, Galilee, and Samaria had peace and were edified. And walking in the fear of the Lord and in the comfort of the Holy Spirit, they were multiplied” (Acts 9:31). Truly, “peace” exists when God’s people obey His Will, not when world rulers sign papers!

An “enemy” is defined in the last verse in the Bible where the term is used: “Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God” (James 4:4). Anyone who is antagonist against God, God’s Will, and God’s People is an “enemy!” Surely one must not rely upon encouragement from an “enemy:” “Faithful are the wounds of a friend, But the kisses of an enemy are deceitful” (Proverbs 27:6).

In complete contrast to everyone who follows the worldly way of human power, war, and control, all Christians who follow God’s Will would respond with good for evil, which is never better stated than when Jesus Christ taught it in His Sermon on the Mount: “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. For if you love those who love you, what reward have you? Do not even the tax collectors do the same?” (Matthew 5:43-46) The best way to get rid of an enemy is to show him/her a better way of behavior, like God, Who gives even the wicked some blessings!

What Solomon taught is applied to Christianity by the Apostle Paul: “If your enemy is hungry, give him bread to eat; And if he is thirsty, give him water to drink; For so you will heap coals of fire on his head, And the LORD will reward you” (Proverbs 25:21-22); “If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, ‘Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,’ says the Lord. Therefore ‘If your enemy is hungry, feed him; If he is thirsty, give him a drink; For in so doing you will heap coals of fire on his head.’ Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good” (Romans 12:18-21). The wisest way to dispose of enemies is by returning good for evil! Any enemy with conscience cannot ignore the Christian’s response to his/her ugliness. However, it is prefaced with the understanding this may not work in every case when he said, “If it is possible, as much as depends on you.” This hallmark of Christianity is easily distinguished from Islamic beheadings, Catholic tortures, or Socialist destruction.

Clearly, no one should rise up haughtily when something bad happens to an enemy: “Do not rejoice when your enemy falls, And do not let your heart be glad when he stumbles; Lest the LORD see it, and it displease Him, And He turn away His wrath from him” (Proverbs 24:17-18). God can punish pride from His children today by misfortune passed from enemies.

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

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Psalm 139 Father Knows Us Best

This Psalm of David gives a picture of how thoroughly God knows us. We should seek to know Him as completely as we can, for “when you did not know God, you served those which by nature are not gods” (Galatians 4:8); “the world through wisdom did not know God” (1 Corinthians 1:21); “He who does not love does not know God, for God is love” (1 John 4:8); Jesus Christ will be “taking vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ” (2 Thessalonians 1:8).

Verses 1-6 show how completely God knows about our individual lives;

Verses 7-12 show how useless it is for anyone to try to flee from God;

Verses 13-16 show when God begins to know us;

Verses 17-18 show how completely we should know God;

Verses 19-22 show how completely we should side with God;

Verses 23-24 show how completely open we should be with ourselves and God.

Verses 1-6: There is no one who knows and understands us like God does: not Mother, Father, Children, Husband or Wife, close friend. God interacts with individual lives by examination, constant monitoring, complete understanding of our thinking, hearing all our words, protecting and guiding at times, all exceeding our own understanding of ourselves!

Verses 7-12: As Adam and Eve discovered in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 3:6-8), there is nowhere God cannot find us: Heaven (as if we could!)? He is there; “Hell” (Sheol, the place beyond the body’s grave, where departed spirits dwell)? He is there; fly as fast as the light of a new day (as if we could!)? dive as deep as the sea goes? He still could guide and hold us; be surrounded by total darkness? God sees as if it was still light. God is everywhere, but He is NOT everything! God is Creator NOT the Creation! Pantheism is totally wrong in this concept.

Verses 13-16: God designs, develops, and delivers each and every human baby ever born! For each and every human baby, while in the womb, God “covered” (intricately weaves together) our organs; “fearfully and wonderfully” develops the baby; makes the skeleton support structure; begins His work on “unformed” “substance” (Hebrew term for embryo), prepared the baby to live “the days fashioned for me” (plans for the baby to live its life on earth). Abortion is the destroying of the work of God, and wise Solomon said: “I know that whatever God does, It shall be forever. Nothing can be added to it, And nothing taken from it. God does it, that men should fear before Him” (Ecclesiastes 3:14). Abortion is taking from the work of God!

Verses 17-18: There is much more about God than we can grasp, but we should learn all we can while we can. The Word of God is the gradual unfolding of the revelation of God.

Verses 19-22: Instead of demanding God to “side” with us, we should get on God’s “side.” There should be no evil work a Christian would practice, plan, or proceed to do: terrorism, abortion, self-centeredness, drunkenness/drug abuse, divisiveness, fornication/adultery, lust, or anything else contrary to “sound doctrine.” Whatever God condemns, Christians should condemn. Whatever God hates, Christians should hate. Whoever is an enemy of God, should be an enemy to a Christian. No Christian should compromise this commitment to God for any  political platform, union slogan, or gang fidelity!

Verses 23-24: An open heart asks for God to check it out, and is willing for Him to “lead me in the way everlasting.” Why wait? God provides for Christians to “examine themselves” (2 Corinthians 13:5). “For if we would judge ourselves, we would not be judged. But when we are judged, we are chastened by the Lord, that we may not be condemned with the world” (1 Corinthians 11:31-32).

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

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