When do we stop needing instruction?

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Proverbs 19

25 Strike a scoffer, and the simple will become wary;

Rebuke one who has understanding, and he will discern knowledge.

26 He who mistreats his father and chases away his mother

Is a son who causes shame and brings reproach.

27 Cease listening to instruction, my son,

And you will stray from the words of knowledge.

Each of these proverbs speaks about people who do or do not receive instruction and wise correction. To “strike the scoffer” means to correct with a painful correction. The scoffer will not listen to instruction so he must receive painful correction; when the scoffer is corrected, the simple one, the one without instruction, will pay attention and might change his way.   When a person with understanding is rebuked, he will see the knowledge in the rebuke and will accept it. A son who refuses the instruction of his parents brings shame and reproach to them as he chases them out of his life. When any son stops listening to instruction he will soon stray from the safety of knowledge.

When we buy something with any complexity, it comes with an owner’s manual. For the item to work at its designed capacity we need to consult and follow the owner’s manual. Since we paid for the item and it is supposed to bring us some level of satisfaction, we willingly pay attention to the manual. We can call the Bible “God’s owner’s manual.” As such, it has the instructions that we need to live our lives to their fullest capacity. As an owner’s manual, it only helps when it is picked up, read, and followed.

It has become very clear to me that people do not like instructions. Some men don’t like owner’s manuals as they want to figure it out by themselves. Others take the owner’s manuals very seriously for awhile and then file it away. Unfortunately, we treat God’s owner’s manual much the same way. As complex as life is, we desperately need instructions. Where we go for instructions matters and what we do with those instructions also matters. Let us be people in the “has understanding” category, those who truly seek the instruction of the Lord and do all that we need to do to follow those life-giving instructions.

 

Each Sunday has it’s own personality and yesterday was a day of focusing on people who need the word of God and who need the Lord. Thanks to Phil Fields and his ministry as they have translated the New Testament into modern Bahassa and are working on completion of the Old Testament. Our songs pointed us to Christ and those who need Him and His message of salvation, from Colossians 2:6-8 we focused on the reminder of the day when Christ called us to His salvation. After the service we enjoyed an international lunch together and the church stayed and fellowshipped for a long time. I thank the Lord for JIBC and for His people who gather weekly around the Word and around the fellowship of the body.

 After the message, one young man told me that he has not yet had that “greatest day of his life,” the day of salvation. He said he was on that journey but was not there yet. Pray for this young man this week to know the call of God on His life to salvation. I have asked prayer for Johanna as she fights cancer. Today, she is going to Kuala Lampur for an evaluation and hopefully treatment. Pray for her healing. Pray also for a couple that has contacted me about their marriage. God knows their need and the answer to it. Pray for them as they seek the Lord that they might seek Him in humility together.

 Have a great day in the Lord,
PS

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