Whoever leads the upright along an evil path
will fall into their own trap,
but the blameless will receive a good inheritance.
One of the most common entertainments of the wicked is to mislead the unwary and foolish from the straight path and have them imitate their wrongdoing. They use all kinds of tricks and traps to induce the naive to do the bad things they’ve been doing and for which they feel proud. Of course they use all kinds of lies and when they succeed in their mission to divert the unwary from the right path, instead of celebrating they make fun of him and make a mockery by accusing him of stupid. The only way they can achieve their purpose is through trickery and that is why we must never go distracted.
In any case, these wicked fellows shall fall into the traps that they have tended at the foot of the inexperienced to take them down. Their lies and tricks will be turned against them in the same way that a boomerang returns to the hands of the one who threw it. From this retribution they will not be able to escape because it is a principle established by God to punish the wicked who manage to confound the unwary. Let us always be alert to the wiles of the enemy. He will always be looking for our downfall and will take advantage of any unguarded moment to attack us with his arsenal of tricks and pranks. I we are aware of his traps we will not be snared by them. Our heavenly Father will give us the discernment and wisdom needed to stay in the center of the right track. To God alone be the glory!
Those who trust in themselves are fools,
but those who walk in wisdom are kept safe.
There are people who have many talents and skills to successfully fulfill the tasks entrusted to them. His intelligence is usually above average and everything they take on they achieve easily. So far so good. The only problem is that these people are so skilled to carry out most tasks that they end up developing an attitude of arrogance and independence. When adversity comes, they face it with their own skills and abilities being very confident that they will, only with their own resources, overcome anything that gets in their way. They no longer depend on the help of others, much less on God’s protection. Arrogance has taken control of their thinking and behavior and thus end up denying the Author of life and salvation. Their glory is to be self-sufficient.
Unfortunately for them,overcoming difficulties requires more than self-sufficiency and ability. Hence, this attitude is very dangerous because when they fail, they say it was because of their of bad luck thus denying the existence of God and his involvement in the matter. Obstacles are not intended to test our ability to overcome them through our own strength. Obstacles are intended to test our faith in God. If whenever we run into an obstacle we only rely on ourselves and our strength to move forward, we will never have the joy of seeing God’s work in our lives because we are not allowing him to perform the part that corresponds to him and only him. Let us recognize that all our abilities come from God. Let us learn to depend less and less of our own forces and capabilities and rely more on God and his power. Only then can we properly exercise our faith. To God alone be the glory!
Whoever increases wealth by taking interest or profit from the poor
amasses it for another, who will be kind to the poor.
One of the worst jobs to which someone could devote to is the job of usurer. Usurers are people who are willing to lend money to others who are experiencing financial need ─in some cases as a result of vice─ at a high cost of financing. The interest rate charged by these ruthless individuals is astronomically high, often exceeding eighty times the interest rate on loans from private banks. The poor victim who is only interested in getting out of a quagmire of insolvency does not object to the cost of debt he is incurring. To his regret, after being caught in the Machiavellian obligation, it is very late to pull back and out of the trap in which he has fallen. He is only left with the resignation to pay every month or every week the high cost of the “help” the usurer provided and having to endure the insults and verbal attacks that the usurer will use to get his money back and his revenue. The financial trap of usury is not a nice place to spend one’s life.
Fortunately, the word of God contains many tips and guidelines to properly manage finances according to God’s plans. God has a very dim view of this detestable species of leeches on legs and has prepared for them severe consequences in this life and in the upcoming judgment. If you have fallen into the clutches of these despicable individuals you must use all your energy and resources to escape from the trap. Confess your financial sins to God and ask for financial freedom from the burden you are carrying now. Stick to the teachings of God and take refuge under the protection that only he can provide. If you follow his footsteps you will find the solution to your financial difficulties and the strength to escape from them.To God alone be the glory!
The greedy stir up conflict,
but those who trust in the LORD will prosper.
Greed is extremely dangerous. Misused ambition leads many to foment violence and chaos. Those who understand their passions and have the wisdom to control what their sinful nature demands of them can channel their ambition for private gain without affecting others. History is filled with greedy characters who led the world into bloody and fratricidal wars with consequences that are still present even centuries later. Ambition is a powerful force that ends up controlling whom has it. Its effects on those around us are staggering because greed cuts off compassion. He who puts his trust in the Lord, on the contrary does not let his passions lead him and makes every effort not to harm his neighbor, and God prospers him accordingly.
What kind of life we are living? What are our priorities? What value do we place the needs of those around us? What do we feel towards them? Pity? Contempt? What are the motives that impel us to move forward in whatever our path? Somewhere along this path we trod we must pause to look at the road map and the compass to verify that we are moving in the right direction. When was the last time you checked your course? In the word of God we can find all the direction we need to progress in our journey to the eternal presence of God. Consult this road map and this compass frequently. To God alone be the glory!
A discerning son heeds instruction,
but a companion of gluttons disgraces his father.
Someone said that there are three ways to obtain a fortune. Earning it through hard work, receiving it as an inheritance and finally stealing it. There are those who cynically said that nearly all fortunes have been made the last two ways and rarely we know of any that has been obtained legitimately and by self-effort. We will not go into details but for the sake of conciseness let us say that the vast majority of personal wealth is obtained through inheritance. Therefore, many people who have large accumulations of money in their bank accounts and possess many properties can do so because their parents or grandparents worked hard to create such a fortune that now they, their children are enjoying. If the children squander what their parents had to work so hard to get, the waste becomes a way to dishonor their parents. Even if we have not received a fortune from them, our parents worked hard so that we might live more comfortably now than they ever did. They also fed us, clothed us and helped us get an education.
Let us manage our finances with wisdom and prudence. Whether the goods we possess were obtained through an inheritance or have been obtained from our work, that capital one day will be for those who survive us, if the Lord does not return before. Let us be good stewards of our Lord and God Jesus Christ who is the only one who really has allowed us to have something to support us and also to leave our descendants, whether treasures or an education. To God alone be the glory!
Better the poor whose walk is blameless
than the rich whose ways are perverse.
Humanity in general has committed the grave error of equating personal success with the ability to accumulate wealth. The rich are always viewed with admiration and they have become idols and models whose conduct many want to imitate. No one is concerned if the rich happens to be dishonest or lacks values and principles, all that matters is how much money he has been able to accumulate and how one could achieve the same “success” that he has achieved. The problem is not the money or the amount of it that one may have. The problem is that we let ourselves be trapped by the glitter of gold and the illusion of the many things that we could get if we had large amounts of it. The problem comes when our lives are captivated and dominated by the love of money and we lose all scruple and all sense of decency in order to seek and accumulate enough treasure for us to live “the good life.”
The apostle Paul said it very clearly: “Those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.” 
Let us be aware lest we fall into the subtle trap that the world puts us in our path to have us caught in its nets. As children of God we must trust in God’s providence and the love he has clearly demonstrated to us all. We will never lack anything because God will always supply us with abundance. Let us not focus on money but on the goodness of God and his infinite love. Seek his face and he will honor our attitude of respect and obedience to him with rich blessings.To God alone be the glory!
 1 Timothy 6:9-10
The rich are wise in their own eyes;
one who is poor and discerning sees how deluded they are.
Some people think that wealth comes from cunningly conducted business and that it is a demonstration of the wisdom of those who have become rich this way. Nothing could be farther from reality. While it is true that the word of God speaks of certain financial principles that will help us not to fall into debt and enjoy a healthy economy, these principles by themselves cannot guarantee financial success. The wise man honors God with his wealth and the first fruits of his crops. God knows the hearts of all men, so he knows the spiritual condition of he who presented the offering. The gift that someone “honors” God with may be ineffective if the heart of he who offers it does not act with sincerity and devotion. God gives us wisdom that allows us to make good decisions on any area of our lives, including our finances. Let us remember that the beginning of knowledge is the fear of the Lord, which is obedience and reverence to God.
So wealth does not depend on cunning or a supposed “financial wisdom” but on the will of God that is good and pleasing and perfect. While there are many non-believers who “enjoy” the accumulation of money and apparently are happy, in reality they are not. Their alleged joy is only a facade behind which they hide their misery. As the apostle Paul told Timothy, “Those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.” Let us act wisely and let us follow the teachings of the Word of God with grateful hearts for all the blessings, financial or of any other kind, that we have received from the mighty hand of God . To God alone be the glory!
Posted in Proverbs
Tagged Christianity, deluded, discerning, God, Jesus, joy, knowledge, love, obedience, poor, Proverbs 28, rich, righteousness, wealth, wisdom, wise
Those who forsake instruction praise the wicked,
but those who heed it resist them.
When someone chooses to ignore God’s commands they are just trying to set their own plans and rules different to those of God. What they are really saying is that their thoughts and ideas are more important than what God has established as a standard for the human race. What they really do is to put themselves at the center of the universe and to put their interests above that of others. Arrogantly, they try to rise even above God, if this were possible. In order to ensure support for their selfish pretexts they seek the company of others who also have decided to abandon the standard of God to justify themselves because they are not alone in their boldness and rebellion. These rebels seek solace looking for one another to take advantage of what conventional wisdom suggests: “Misery loves company.” These villains form gangs to show defiance and to separate themselves even further from God.
For these, a sentence has been established already. Peter said: “Their condemnation has long been hanging over them, and their destruction has not been sleeping.” And “For they mouth empty, boastful words and, by appealing to the lustful desires of the flesh, they entice people who are just escaping from those who live in error.” One thing we can be sure of, that each day the number of those who oppose the plans and statutes of God will increase. They have preferred to place their vile beyond the demands of holiness that God has established for man. Their growth and spread is just one more sign that the Lord’s Day is approaching. Let us look with hope to the glorious future that awaits us in which we will receive our reward for having remained faithful to the decrees of the Lord and the wicked will receive the punishment that they have sought for themselves. To God alone be the glory!
Posted in Proverbs
Tagged Christianity, faith, forsake, God, heed, hope, instruction, Jesus, life, love, obedience, praise, Proverbs 28, resist, spirituality, truth, wicked, wisdom
Those who work their land will have abundant food,
but those who chase fantasies will have their fill of poverty.
Man, who was created in God’s image, has one or more genes in his chromosomes that equip him with creativity or the ability to create. Human creations typically begin with the generation of an idea that, if physically feasible, can be transformed into work or action. It is in the process of generating ideas where we find the open door of the imagination. Some of the ideas taken from the fantasy world have been converted into concrete objects or actions but most of them just remain as they are, that is, mere fantasies. There are many people who like to visit this world of fiction, but not to take ideas and turn them into works but to seek an escape from reality. Their life is to imagine entelechy after entelechy and frolic among them but their ideas never come to fruition. They spend a lifetime dreaming of the “may be” and therefore fail to give due attention to the “is” and the “ought to be.” We can afford to spend a reasonable length of time daydreaming about opportunities and desires, but if we dedicate too much time to this world of illusion, most likely we will end up losing touch with reality.
Human beings were created to be engaged in productive activities that generate satisfaction. Those who think that work is a curse or a devious way of punishment are completely wrong. The truth is that whoever does not work will see that his situation degenerates day by day and every day that passes he becomes a poorer person, both physically and spiritually. Let us manage with much wisdom and seriousness the time we dedicate to solace in this world of fantasy and dreams. Let us give thanks to God because we have been given the gift of imagination and creativity that allows us to participate, as beings created in God’s image, in the creative process and also because we are blessed with a job or an activity that keeps us busy, productive, satisfied and grateful to God. To God alone be the glory!
Posted in Proverbs
Tagged abundance, Christianity, faith, fantasy, food, God, Jesus, land, love, poverty, Proverbs 28, spirituality, wealth, wisdom, work
Whoever increases wealth by taking interest or profit from the poor
amasses it for another, who will be kind to the poor.
I read somewhere ─ pardon me, but I do not remember where ─ that large fortunes could only be acquired two ways, stealing or inheriting, and that those who inherit are just getting something that their parents or grandparents had stolen. This somewhat cynical observation has some truth to it and shows a sad reality. People, in their quest to secure a comfortable future, free from financial worries, are capable bypassing moral principles and even breaking laws to achieve their financial goals. One of the most common ways to do this is by usury. Usurer is a person who lends money at unreasonable high interest rates; usually to people who are poor or who can least afford the high rates. The term also applies to those who disproportionately inflate the price of goods to take advantage of the vagaries of supply and demand. Either way, usury is theft. What usurers do not know is that any money earned this way will only serve to fatten the coffers of those of whom God has chosen to manage his wealth and are willing to give generously to the poor and the needy.
There is nothing more uncertain than riches, even more so when wealth is obtained by reprehensible methods. God provides in abundance to those who know how to manage the wealth that has been trusted to them. Trying to secure something that is beyond what God knows we need or we can manage is to get ourselves into a fine mess and to deviate from the path that God has set for us. Are we managing our finances according to the criteria established by God or according to the criteria established by the world? Devoting adequate attention to this aspect of our lives will result in great benefit to us. Trust in the Lord Jesus and he will give you what you need and some more. Let us manage what he has given us in a way according to his wise principles. To God alone be the glory!