It’s Not For Your Pleasure

Proverbs 24:17-18

Do not rejoice when your enemy falls,

and let not your heart be glad when he stumbles,

lest the Lord see it and be displeased,

and turn away his anger from him.

I read these verses and thought about how they fit into the theme of why does God let bad things happen to good people and vice versa.  It also goes along with the whole balance of the universe and eventually, on God’s terms, there is a price to pay for sin.

Job questioned it throughout the Book of Job.  He wondered why a good and righteous man such as himself, could have such horrible events happen to him.  Remember Job lost all his possessions, which were extensive He lost his entire family except for his wife.  Job questioned because he looked around and saw the wicked man living in the lap of luxury, while committing sins and having the time of his life.

King David had the same sentiments.  How could such evil and wicked men pursue him, force him to vacate his kingdom, and force him into hiding, when he was the chosen leader?

Both men, David and Job, by having God in their hearts realized and understood there is a price for sin and they knew these wicked men were going to pay. David and Job knew not to abandon God and vacate God from their hearts.  By having God in their hearts they knew what was righteous.  So even though they weren’t seeing or even hearing about these wicked men paying the price for their sins, they knew it was coming.  They believed in this and tried to maintain their righteousness.

King Solomon knew this. God had bestowed great wisdom upon him.  Unfortunately as Solomon’s wealth and power grew so did corruption.  Eventually, in spite of his wisdom, he stumbled when he left God out of his heart to make room for the false gods that were brought to him by his foreign wives.

These three wise and righteous men all knew there is a price to pay for sin.  They knew that God is just with all. Although this justice may not be to our liking, it may not come when we expect it or how we expect it, but it does come.  It is there, it is the balance to the universe.

So what is King Solomon saying in these two verses?

He is telling us that this justice, this payback, this price of sin is not for our satisfaction or gratification.  It is not for us to gloat and it is not to make us feel better.  It is not for us to say, well not I can feel good and have my closure, now my faith is restored.  That is just vanity and arrogance.

It’s not up to God to make us feel better.  God is not our personal enforcer to make sure someone pays the price for what we feel is sin or hurt to us.  It is our job to make ourselves get over these things and move on, not God’s job.

How do we get by when we see evil prospering and righteousness suffering?

We get by, by having God in our hearts and by the message of Christ, forgiveness.

Forgiveness is not condoning, it’s not saying it’s OK.  Forgiveness is letting go of the anger in your heart.  It is moving on and knowing it is not yours to judge and assess the punishment to make it all better.

In these verses, King Solomon is telling me, payback is a bitch, but it’s not for your pleasure.

© Otis P Smith and About the Groove, 2018. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Otis P Smith and About the Groove with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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