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Riches vs Righteousness

Proverbs 11: 1-31

Saturday, 26 November 2022

Riches provide no security in any day of wrath and judgment, but righteousness delivers from death. -Proverbs 11:4

Solomon contrasts the importance of riches with that of righteousness in the Day of Judgment. Solomon’s perspective was that of the Old Testament, a king who had a clear understanding of the importance of the role of Israel’s leader. The nation of Israel experienced their share of ups and downs. The nation prospered under a righteous leader and suffered under an unrighteous leader. It all hinged upon the time of judgment— judgment being a bad thing for the unrighteous, but a good thing for the righteous. It’s not that Jehovah did not judge the nation of Israel during the times of righteous leaders; it was quite the contrary. It was because He judged them righteous that the nation prospered!

In the New Testament we no longer have Kings or Judges, but judgment still takes place. There is the common judgment that takes place all the time, where the Lord judges our actions and we reap whatever we sow. If we have been sowing good seed, we reap a good harvest. If not, we don’t. Galatians 6:7 NLT says, “Don’t be misled—you cannot mock the justice of God. You will always harvest what you plant.” There is no way around it! But ultimately there will be one great Judgment Day. Two major judgments will take place. The first one will be to check whether or not our names are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life (Rev. 20). Only the names of the righteous are written there and the only way to become righteous – by this standard – is to accept Jesus the Christ as Lord (Romans 10:9, 10, 13). In 2 Corinthians 5:21, Paul said, “God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God”. When we accept Jesus as our Lord we become righteous in Him. It’s not that we are righteous in and of ourselves. No! He makes us righteous. The Father declares us righteous through the Blood of Jesus. The second judgment will be for our works. The Father will judge what we did with the life that He gave us. Paul tells us that our works will basically fall into one of six categories: gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, or straw. Our works will be judged by fire and all those in the wood, hay, and straw categories will burn up. Only the ones in the gold, silver, and precious stones categories will endure the fire. Those are the works that we did that had eternal significance (1Corinthians 3:9-15).

So what does this mean to you today? It means that money has nothing to do with the Day of Judgment. Money has its place. It is God’s will that we finance the Kingdom, that we be financially secure, and that we leave an inheritance for our children’s children (Proverbs 13:22); but on the Day of Judgment the size of our bank account will not count. You can’t buy righteousness. Your righteousness was paid for – IN FULL – with the Blood of Jesus. On that day all that really matters is whether or not you have been made righteous in Him and what you did with the life that He gave you!

Prayer: Father God, I respond to the Gospel message of Jesus Christ. Forgive me of all my sins. I accept You as my Lord and Saviour. I enter this day determined to do things that are of eternal significance. Lead me Father to works that will endure the fire! Lord, make a difference in me today! In Jesus’ name. Amen.



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