Reading: Proverbs 27:1-29
The proverb that captures my heart today is verse 20. “Death and Destruction are never satisfied, and neither are the eyes of man.” There are two deep truths here…
First, all things are rapidly moving towards atrophy and chaos, things around us, including ourselves, are rusting and decaying; whether we care to ponder it or not, everything we have and everybody we know will one day be either broken or dead. Second, ironically, we chase after these temporary things and are never satisfied. They just don’t fill that void-they just don’t bring the satisfaction we are looking for.
It is odd that though we know these two statements to be true, we still live as if we are going to live forever, and are suckered into a consumerism that, in Mark Greene’s words, has made us:
ashamed of our mobile,
ashamed of our profile,
ashamed of our thin lips,
ashamed of our thick hips,
ashamed of our smallish breasts,
ashamed of our hairless chests,
ashamed of our specs,
ashamed of our pecs,
ashamed of our multi-fold belly
ashamed of our narrow-screen telly.
What is the answer? Where is the hope? What does wisdom say? Solomon has repeatedly said that real wisdom is to know God. Solomon writes in Ecclesiastes that apart from knowing God- everything is meaningless. (Ecc 12:1,9-14). My experience, my learning and the Bible, tells me that knowing God in Jesus, through the power of the Holy Spirit is the only way I can know peace. So why then, in our busy worlds, is it easy to ditch Jesus and so easy to fixate on the temporal?
Maybe today there is a need to come back to the cross. There, Jesus defeated death, meaninglessness and destruction, by swallowing it up into his own body on the cross, drawing death out of the universe like poison being sucked from a wound. When he died, death died with him. When he died, he also bore our falseness and fallen-ness. In doing so, he opened a way into the very presence of the Father. Now, he is risen, calling any who would come, to him.
I’m 46 years old. I’ve had my fair share of ups and downs, good times, successes, laughter and achievements; I’ve known heartache, disappointment, loss and depression and there have have been times when I have felt so hopeless that I have despaired of live itself. But, along with my family, Jesus has always held me, always been near always been the most gentle saviour.
In the final words, of what would be his final sermon, Spurgeon said,
How greatly I desire that you who are not yet enlisted in my Lord’s band would come to him because you see what a kind and gracious Lord he is! Young men, if you could see our Captain, you would get down on your knees and beg him to let you enter the ranks of those who follow him. It is heaven to serve Jesus … Every man must serve somebody: we have no choice as to that fact. Those who have no master are slaves to themselves. Depend upon it, you will either serve Satan or Christ, either self or the saviour. You will find sin, self, Satan, and the world to be hard masters; but if you wear the livery of Christ, you will find him so meek and lowly of heart that you will find rest unto your souls. He is the most magnanimous of captains. There never was his like among the choicest of princes. He is always to be found in the thickest part of the battle. When the wind blows cold he always takes the bleak side of the hill. The heaviest end of the cross lies ever on his shoulders. If he bids us carry a burden, he carries it also. If there is anything that is gracious, generous, kind, and tender, yea lavish and super abundant in love, you always find it in him. These forty years and more have I served him, blessed be his name! and I have had nothing but love from him. I would be glad to continue yet another forty years in the same dear service here below if so it pleased him. His service is life, peace, joy. Oh, that you would enter on it at once! God help you to enlist under the banner of Jesus even this day! Amen.
“I have come that you might have life and have it to the full” (John 10:10)
“Death and Destruction are never satisfied, and neither are the eyes of a person” (Proverbs 27:20)
Father, today I bow the knee to Jesus! May he be my prized possession, my deepest joy, the love of my life. In the power of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
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