Thought for the Day
Verse 11 – These verses show us that there are two ways to gain instruction in life. We can learn by hearing and obeying, or we can learn by trial and error. When those without instruction see a scorner punished, they understand that there is a price to pay for doing wrong. If the scorner has any sense, he will learn that evil does not pay. The wise person, however, does not have to learn things the hard way. Because he seeks instruction, he will not do the things that bring needless evil upon himself. Therefore, he will not suffer any ill effects because he will not do the things that cause them. The law of “cause and effect,” (or what the Bible calls the law of “sowing and reaping”) brings evil or good into lives depending on what we sow.
God is often blamed for things that He did not cause. He has set limits and boundaries; and when we violate them, we cause problems for ourselves. God does not bring those problems upon us. We bring them upon ourselves. For instance, if we are speeding down the road in our car, and we get pulled over by a policeman, it would be stupid to blame the car or the policeman for our ticket. It is our own fault. We can avoid much of the pain we suffer in this world by simply obeying Him.
Some people declare they learned a lot through their tragic experiences. In many cases, however, the same lessons could have been learned by studying and obeying God’s Word. For example, I do not have to learn the truth that “the way of transgressors is hard” (Proverb 13:15) by committing some evil and suffering for it. I can simply believe that what the Bible says is the truth, and commit no transgression. The Lord loves us and His commandments were given for our protection.
Verse 12 – The wicked are destroyed by reaping what they have sown (Psalm 9:16AMP). They may live many years before they are brought to ruin, and many foolish observers may be tempted to think it pays to follow in their ways. The righteous, however, wisely observe the wicked man’s actions, and know that eventually God will judge him. His ruin, when it comes, will not be worth all his years of ease and luxury. The Lord advises us to follow Him in willing obedience; not like a mule that must have a bit and bridle in its mouths to guide it. “I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with mine eye. Be ye not as the horse, or as the mule, which have no understanding: whose mouth must be held in with bit and bridle, lest they come near unto thee. Many sorrows shall be to the wicked: but he that trusteth in the LORD, mercy shall compass him about” (Psalm 32:8-10).