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4-17-2017 Work and Salvation

“In all labor there is profit, But idle chatter leads only to poverty. The crown of the wise is their riches, But the foolishness of fools is folly” (Proverbs 14:23-24 NKJV).  Since God established the “work ethic,” where there is no “labor,” there is no “profit” (earnings). In the Garden of Eden, God gave man a job, “to tend and keep it” (Genesis 2:15 NKJV). After Adam sinned, God expelled him with a job: “In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread” (Genesis 3:19 NKJV). A welfare state, which takes from the workers and re-distributes to non-workers, promotes slothfulness: “The desire of the lazy man kills him, For his hands refuse to labor. He covets greedily all day long” (Proverbs 21:25-26). Salvation is not a guarantee of some spiritual “welfare state.” “Faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead” (James 2:17 NKJV).

This is Johnny Polk, with “Words of Wisdom” brought to you by the Oneida church of Christ.

#labor, #profit, #slothfulness, #welfare-state

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(#96) The Proverbs of Solomon 15:19-A Thorny Issue

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 15:19: “The way of the lazy man is like a hedge of thorns, But the way of the upright is a highway.”

If this refers to real thorns, “the lazy” will refuse to struggle through difficulties and work. If this refers to imaginary thorns, “the lazy” will imagine too much difficulty to overcome and refuse to work. Either way, “the lazy” is an expression denoting those who are wasting their lives. Jesus Christ described a man giving three servants “talents” “each according to his own ability,” five, two and one. After the others produced profit equal to their talents, the one-talent man returned his one with the sorry excuse: “Lord, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you have not sown, and gathering where you have not scattered seed. And I was afraid, and went and hid your talent in the ground. Look, there you have what is yours” (Matthew 25:24-25). Jesus was hard on such a lazy person when he was condemned as a “wicked and lazy servant” (Matthew 25:26). “Wicked” for blaming someone else for expecting him to produce, “lazy” for producing nothing with what he had! God will save no lazy person from himself/herself, or from eternal punishment for such laziness! Jesus’ invitation is for “all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28). After Jesus miraculously fed 5000 men not counting the women and children with 5 loaves of bread and 2 small fish (John 6:1-14), they followed Him for another “free meal” the next day. Jesus told them: “’Most assuredly, I say to you, you seek Me, not because you saw the signs, but because you ate of the loaves and were filled. Do not labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to everlasting life, which the Son of Man will give you, because God the Father has set His seal on Him.’ Then they said to Him, ‘What shall we do, that we may work the works of God?’ Jesus answered and said to them, ‘This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He sent’ (John 6:26-29). Those who call the church only when their laziness has dug them a hole, need repentance, not repeated assistance! Helping those who are searching for the Truth of God’s Word is benevolence, helping those who don’t care about Truth but only “freebies” is malevolence. Gospel Truth includes the Holy Spirit-inspired rule: “For even when we were with you, we commanded you this: If anyone will not work, neither shall he eat” (2 Thessalonians 3:10). The “lazy” have not “will” to work, and therefore crowd government lines for: commodities, food stamps, reduced-price school lunches and Internet, free cell phones, health insurance, and whatever else the government is willing to re-distribute among them. They are stealing from any who have a deserving need for such temporary aid; are empowering laziness in government who no longer has to work at meeting their constitutional obligations because of built-in votes; and are clogging up the “highway” of “the upright” by forcing them to support wastrels whom not even God will have without changing! Another proverb God has given says: “Do not love sleep, lest you come to poverty; Open your eyes, and you will be satisfied with bread” (Proverbs 20:13).

Becoming a Christian requires willful obedience (Acts 2:38, 40-41), and the souls of new Christians were to be strengthened when exhorted “to continue in the faith, and saying, ‘We must through many tribulations enter the kingdom of God’” (Acts 14:22). Those who are sleeping through their lives, expecting to return to God their one-talent lives, will hear their Judgment: “Therefore take the talent from him, and give it to him who has ten talents. For to everyone who has, more will be given, and he will have abundance; but from him who does not have, even what he has will be taken away. And cast the unprofitable servant into the outer darkness. There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth” (Matthew 25:28-30).

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

#bible-study, #church-of-christ, #god, #jesus-christ, #lazy, #life, #obedience, #profit, #proverbs, #salvation, #unprofitable, #upright, #will, #wisdom, #work

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(#86) The Proverbs of Solomon 14:23-No “Communism” Here!

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 14:23: “In all labor there is profit, But idle chatter leads only to poverty.”

Since God established the “work ethic,” where there is no “labor,” there is no “profit” (capital, benefit, earnings). In the Garden of Eden, God gave man a job, “to tend and keep it” (Genesis 2:15). After Adam sinned, God expelled him with a job: “In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread” (Genesis 3:19).

God’s endorsement of this principle, through Solomon, was: “Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might” (Ecclesiastes 9:10); “The sleep of a laboring man is sweet, Whether he eats little or much; But the abundance of the rich will not permit him to sleep” (Ecclesiastes 5:12). A communistic welfare state, which takes from the workers and re-distributes to non-workers, promotes slothfulness: “The desire of the lazy man kills him, For his hands refuse to labor. He covets greedily all day long, But the righteous gives and does not spare” (Proverbs 21:25-26). This proverb is added to Christ’s Law: “Let him who stole steal no longer, but rather let him labor, working with his hands what is good, that he may have something to give him who has need” (Ephesians 4:28). Another proverb of Solomon is taught in the New Testament: “The person who labors, labors for himself, For his hungry mouth drives him on” (Proverbs 16:26); “For even when we were with you, we commanded you this: If anyone will not work, neither shall he eat” (2 Thessalonians 3:10). God’s damnation is upon all efforts to by-pass His “work ethic” principle: covetousness, stealing, extortion, excessive or punitive taxes, scams, schemes, gambling and lotteries (1 Corinthians 6:9-10).

Solomon also showed the “vanity” of giving workers’ profits to non-workers: “Then I hated all my labor in which I had toiled under the sun, because I must leave it to the man who will come after me. And who knows whether he will be wise or a fool? Yet he will rule over all my labor in which I toiled and in which I have shown myself wise under the sun. This also is vanity. Therefore I turned my heart and despaired of all the labor in which I had toiled under the sun. For there is a man whose labor is with wisdom, knowledge, and skill; yet he must leave his heritage to a man who has not labored for it. This also is vanity and a great evil” (Ecclesiastes 2:18-21). Whatever “profit” that comes from honest “labor” belongs to the “laborer,” and no one else! Losing control of what one has worked for kills any incentive for working. Since God charged men with “work,” Marxism/socialism is a direct attack on manhood, and an enslaving of womanhood who must do man’s work!

“Idle chatter” (empty talk) profits nothing, and destroys people who believe it. All who talk about work instead of working are leading to “poverty” and NOT “profit!” Marxism, and all who follow it, is rebellion against God that impoverishes nations. It has never been a success, and never will! Jesus shows a spiritual application when He said: “’Most assuredly, I say to you, you seek Me, not because you saw the signs, but because you ate of the loaves and were filled. Do not labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to everlasting life, which the Son of Man will give you, because God the Father has set His seal on Him.’ Then they said to Him, ‘What shall we do, that we may work the works of God?’ Jesus answered and said to them, ‘This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He sent’” (John 6:26-29). Neither physical nor spiritual “profits” are for those who “will not work!” America was rich as long as it was not a “welfare state” that “re-distributed” the wealth of its workers! All economies bankrupt when workers’ profits are used by non-workers!

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

#bible-study, #communism, #covetousness, #extortion, #jesus-christ, #job, #labor, #laboring, #lazy, #marxism, #non-worker, #practical-lessons, #profit, #proverbs, #re-distribute-wealth, #stealing, #truth, #welfare-state, #wisdom, #work, #worker

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(#56) The Proverbs of Solomon 12:11-Don’t “Buy the Farm”—Yet!

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 12:11: “He who tills his land will be satisfied with bread, But he who follows frivolity is devoid of understanding.”

The association of agriculture and hard work goes back to the Garden of Eden. God “planted a garden” (Genesis 2:8), but when man was created, he was “put in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it” (Genesis 2:15). After sin entered the world, man was burdened with: “In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread Till you return to the ground, For out of it you were taken; For dust you are, And to dust you shall return” (Genesis 3:19). Hard working farmers should be able to share in their harvest, for “he who plows should plow in hope, and he who threshes in hope should be partaker of his hope” (1 Corinthians 9:10). Rulers must accept the fact that, without farmers, they have no kingdom! Solomon later would say: “Moreover the profit of the land is for all; even the king is served from the field” (Ecclesiastes 5:9). Eating “bread” is another way of saying farmers should be in the plowing and profiting business. The “hope” of hard work is profiting from it and providing for one’s family. It is hypocrisy to curse the farmer with a mouthful of food! Whatever is done to discourage farming, or force farmers to sell their farms, is destroying the entire country.

Instead of working the land when needed, “frivolity” distracts from the real task at hand. The parallel proverb shows how wrong “frivolity” really is: Proverbs 28:19: “He who tills his land will have plenty of bread, But he who follows frivolity will have poverty enough!” Entertainment instead of agriculture reveals one as being “devoid of understanding,” or worse, having “poverty enough!” It is senseless to neglect food production for fun and games! Other proverbs on this subject include: Proverbs 13:23: “Much food is in the fallow ground of the poor, And for lack of justice there is waste;” Proverbs 27:18: “Whoever keeps the fig tree will eat its fruit; So he who waits on his master will be honored;” Proverbs 27:23: “Be diligent to know the state of your flocks, And attend to your herds.” Hard work is always the answer for poor economy, and “the poor” are often that way because of a lack of effort! Only thieves and robbers would steal “bread” (from the profits) without engaging in the hard work it took to produce it! Over-emphasizing entertainment is simply spreading “poverty” instead of encouraging bread-winners!

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

#bible-study, #entertainment, #farmers, #frivolous, #poor, #poverty, #practical-lessons, #profit, #proverbs, #wisdom, #work

Laying up treasure – JAM

Chef Albert Grabham of the New House Hotel in Wales was concerned that the restaurant’s New Year’s Eve earnings would attract the attention of thieves. So he came up with a clever solution. He hid the cash in the oven. However, it didn’t turn out so well. The next day, absent-mindedly he fired up the same oven to prepare New Year’s Day lunch and burned up the profit. Now you may ask how could anyone be so stupid. But the fact is we all do foolish things and forget salient facts. One of the most important and obvious is the fact that we live until we die and then what? Are you ready for what’s next? This is Just-A-Minute with Ed Boggess

#just-a-minute, #profit, #treasure