The rich rules over the poor...
Proverbs 22:1-11 from the daily reading in the One Year Bible
On Life and Conduct
A good name is to be more desired than great wealth,
Favor is better than silver and gold.
2 The rich and the poor have a common bond,
The Lord is the maker of them all.
3 The prudent sees the evil and hides himself,
But the naive go on, and are punished for it.
4 The reward of humility and the fear of the Lord
Are riches, honor and life.
5 Thorns and snares are in the way of the perverse;
He who guards himself will be far from them.
6 Train up a child in the way he should go,
Even when he is old he will not depart from it.
7 The rich rules over the poor,
And the borrower becomes the lender’s slave.
8 He who sows iniquity will reap vanity,
And the rod of his fury will perish.
9 He who is generous will be blessed,
For he gives some of his food to the poor.
10 Drive out the scoffer, and contention will go out,
Even strife and dishonor will cease.
11 He who loves purity of heart
And whose speech is gracious, the king is his friend.
Our culture, which denies God, tries to create equality in ways that it does not exist. There are male and female and differences do exist. There are and always will be rich and poor. No amount of social, political or legal activism can change that. The writer of Proverbs says: The rich and the poor have a common bond, The Lord is the maker of them all. If the world would acknowledge that God is creator, they would understand where true equality lies. The equality that exists because God is the maker of all has no regard for whether a person is male or female, rich or poor. It does not matter what the color of their skin is or what language they speak. All people have the common bond that God is their creator and that they were created in His image and likeness. Furthermore, every person, regardless of gender, wealth, social standing, race or ethnicity also has the same common bond in that Jesus died on the cross, once for all, to redeem them from sin. It is only those who reject the true equality of God and Christ who try to create equality where it does not exist.
The writer of proverbs says:
The prudent sees the evil and hides himself,
But the naive go on, and are punished for it. The reward of humility and the fear of the Lord Are riches, honor and life. Thorns and snares are in the way of the perverse; He who guards himself will be far from them. Train up a child in the way he should go, Even when he is old he will not depart from it. Today and for the last couple of generations we can see the results of not training up our children in the way they should go. The responsibility for the education and upbringing, the training up of children has been handed over to day cares, schools; to television, the internet, video games, media and the entertainment industry. The results are obvious and they are not good. Our schools have strayed from their mission of teaching reading and writing and arithmetic. They have fallen behind the rest of the world in math, sciences and language skills. They are committed to rewriting history rather than teaching it. They have become more concerned with forming, to the point of indoctrination, the social and moral values of children. Far from raising up their children, many parents are unaware of the curriculum that is being presented to their children from kinder garden on up through higher education. There is a plan behind what is going on, but it is not God’s plan. In Deuteronomy 6:4-9 God says: “Hear, O Israel! The Lord is our God, the Lord is one! You shall love the Lordyour God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand and they shall be as frontals on your forehead. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.” When children are raised with confusion about who they are and what makes them equal, when they are taught that equality is ordered rather than ordained, they become confused. When they are not trained up in the way they should go, they are left not knowing the way to go. Because they were trained to believe the media, they are completely susceptible to its influence and deception. Rather than running and hiding from evil, they have been trained to accept, tolerate and embrace it. As a result we see generation of people who are ensared by the thorns of addiction and depression. These are the results of a culture that tries to create equality apart from God. It is an equality that is not based in reality.
The text says: The rich rules over the poor, And the borrower becomes the lender’s slave. He who sows iniquity will reap vanity, And the rod of his fury will perish. He who is generous will be blessed, For he gives some of his food to the poor. Drive out the scoffer, and contention will go out, Even strife and dishonor will cease. It does not matter what political system you choose. The truth is the rich rule over the poor. It is true in capitalism, socialism and communism. It is true in democracies and dictatorships. Laws and government cannot change it, nor do those who make the laws and those who govern want to. The truth is, even in God’s plan and order for this world, the rich will rule. The difference is, if those who are rich understand and acknowledge the common bond that they have with the poor, that God is the maker of them all, they will be generous and share with those in need. If the wealthy in this nation and around the world were encouraged to give to the needy rather than to squander billions of dollars on political and social agendas there would be little or no poverty. Proverbs says: Drive out the scoffer, and contention will go out, Even strife and dishonor will cease. Our culture and our society has instead tried to drive out the believer and even God Himself. The result is that contention, strife and dishonor have increased.
The text says: He who loves purity of heart And whose speech is gracious, the king is his friend. In John 15:14-15 Jesus says: “You are My friends if you do what I command you. No longer do I call you slaves, for the slave does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I have heard from My Father I have made known to you.” We may not be subject to a king, but if we have purity of heart, if we do what Jesus commands us, we are frinds of the King of Kings. Romans 8:14-17 says: All who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God. For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a spirit of adoption as sons by which we cry out, “Abba! Father!” The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ.” Through Christ we are not only all equal with each other, but He has given us equality with Him and the Father through the Holy Spirit. In John 14:16-17;19-21;23 Jesus says: “ I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you forever; that is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it does not see Him or know Him, but you know Him because He abides with you and will be in you…because I live, you will live also. In that day you will know that I am in My Father, and you in Me, and I in you. He who has My commandments and keeps them is the one who loves Me; and he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and will disclose Myself to him… If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our abode with him.”
The text says: Train up a child in the way he should go, Even when he is old he will not depart from it. Jesus says: “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”
Amen, Forgive us Lord for failing to train up our children. By Your Holy Spirit draw them and reveal Yourself and Your truth, that they might know the way; that they may know the freedom and the equality of the cross and the resurrection. Amen.