Tuesday, March 5, 2024

Prayer for Godliness and Contentment

Tuesday, March 5, 2023

Prayer for Godliness and Contentment – Proverbs 30:5-9 Submitted by Kay Crumley

I think of Proverbs as being a book of short gems of wisdom. There is that kind of writing in this book. One example is found in Proverbs 9:10 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding. In this one verse is great instruction for us to have ‘fear of’ or ‘awe in’ our Lord. He is greater and more powerful than we will ever comprehend. Those who fear Him have started to be wise and those who know Him have begun to have understanding. That one verse is enough to know an entire lesson in wisdom and understanding. But as we look at Chapter 30 of Proverbs, we see what one version refers to as an inspired writing by Agur. All the Bible is inspired by God, 2 Timothy 3:16-17 and is good for doctrine, reproof, correction, and instruction in righteousness. The verses we will examine today give us doctrine and instruction.  

5 Every word of God is pure; 
He is a shield to those who take refuge in Him. 
6 Don’t add to His words, 
or He will rebuke you, and you will be proved a liar. 

What do you believe about the Bible, the Word of God? Is it the divinely inspired words of God alone? The answer is YESAs you see in verse 5, Agur is declaring the truth that every Word of God is pure or true. Every means all. He is proclaiming the undeniable truth of the Word of God. Then we are reassured by the promise that He will protect those who place their trust in Him. He is our refuge in times of trouble. However, Agur also warns us that adding anything to His already complete, pure, true Word is not a wise thing to do. He, God, will rebuke or disapprove of those who add their own words to the Bible and prove them to be liars. We should never embellish His Word. Teachers and Pastors explain in more contemporary language what the Word means but we are never to alter His Word by putting our own twist on it. That is Christian doctrine, our set of beliefs. The entire Word of God is true and complete. It needs no additions, nor does it need any deletions. We know nothing about Agur but these words in Proverbs from him are an example of the way the Holy Spirit oversaw and directed the inspiration of Scripture.  

7 Two things I ask of You; 
don’t deny them to me before I die: 
8 Keep falsehood and deceitful words far from me. 
Give me neither poverty nor wealth; 
feed me with the food I need. 
9 Otherwise, I might have too much 
and deny You, saying, “Who is the Lord?” 
or I might have nothing and steal, 
profaning the name of my God. 

Agur now offers a prayer to God for His provision and protection. He recognizes his need for a kingdom-minded attitude that will spare him a lifetime of worry. His first request is for personal integrity. As we strive to grow more Christ like we must be people who can be trusted as God is trustworthy. Christian principles demand that we are reliable and honest. He understands that too much wealth will lead him to become self-reliant. We can fall into the misconception that if we are wealthy, we don’t need to depend on God for His provision. And, conversely, living in poverty may led us to steal to have our needs met. That too is a result of depending on self rather than on God who is the One who meets our every need. Phil 4:19 And my God will supply every need of yours according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus. One of the fears he has is that he will ‘profane’ the name of God. Profane isn’t a word I use often. The definition is to treat with disrespect, to violate, or to degrade. Our behavior as believers must be such that we never bring disrespect to God. We may be the only example of Christ that people we encounter ever see. Believers are to reflect the character of our Savior. The fruits of the Spirit, as listed in Galatians 5:22-23 are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. As believers these characteristics should be evident in our lives and cause those around us to question what makes us so unique as compared to the world. Worldly attitudes cause us to bring disrespect to the name we bear, Christian. Our prayer must be that as we mature in our faith and walk with the Lord that we may develop godliness and contentment so that our life brings honor and respect to the One True God.  




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