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Lesson # Proverbs 4:14-19
Study Material - Proverbs 4:14-19
You must be in fellowship prior to your Bible study, so that the spiritual information you receive can become a source of blessing to your soul and produce spiritual growth.
14 Do not enter the path of the wicked, And do not proceed in the way of evil men. 15 Avoid it, do not pass by it; Turn away from it and pass on. 16 For they cannot sleep unless they do evil; And they are robbed of sleep unless they make someone stumble. 17 For they eat the bread of wickedness, And drink the wine of violence. 18 But the path of the righteous is like the light of dawn, That shines brighter and brighter until the full day. 19 The way of the wicked is like darkness; They do not know over what they stumble.
There are two philosophies in life. The sin nature promotes one, which is in opposition to God. Bible doctrine promotes that which is compatible with and from God. Evil is the production of the sin nature. Good is the production of Bible doctrine. Wicked is the description of people who follow path that their sin nature promotes in their life. Righteous is the description of people who follow Bible doctrine.
We all have only these two choices to follow in life. There is no third choice. We either follow God or we do not. Many people try to rationalize that nonexistent third choice and mix the two, which waters down Bible doctrine, and in their own minds, they feel they can follow God in their own way. That is what Cain did, and of course we know that God rejected Cain. But God also told Cain that if he would follow Gods rules he would be treated very well. But Cain rejected God.
We see here again the warning to avoid and not follow the path of the wicked. Not live by our sin natures, and thus live our lives as others in this evil category do. Avoid it, pass by it, turn away from its temptations, because evil consumes you. Following your sin nature, leaves you without any sense of security. If makes you restless. It is never satisfied. Sin promotes dissatisfaction, and eventual manifestations of resentment, hate, lust, greed, gossip, self righteousness, and the list goes on. These are all unstable feelings, all subjective orientations to life. This life style is devoid of God or doctrine and leaves you in a fog of uncertainty and frustration.
Now these feelings and attitudes do not develop over night, but develop over long periods of months, and of years. Note too that the sin nature controls your life if you allow it to, making you a slave to it, blinding you to your dependence, leaving you with the feeling that you are independent.
Bible doctrine is perceived by negative people as making you dependent on God, foregoing your freedom of self direction, and this belief is completely in the reverse. Bible doctrine gives you tremendous freedom and produces prosperity, long life ( Hummm! Live long and prosper! I've heard that somewhere before.), and the sin nature makes you a slave and without your knowledge.
Wicked people are confused and fooled, but by their own negative volition toward Bible doctrine. The sin nature is in us all and it is extremely powerful. The bulk of the world is under its influence. Not just some hardened criminals, but most people just like you and me, seemingly normal people, but in their soul they are in decay.
They will never find rest, Gods rest, which is the only true rest, in this life. Gods rest comes only from learning Bible doctrine and growing up spiritually to maturity. There is no other means of gaining Gods rest, Gods peace. You cannot sit in the corner and hum to yourself and gain peace with the universe, which by the way is in decay as well.
Sinners, those who reject or simply ignore God, get their nourishment from their sin natures, which is wickedness, evil, all that is contrary to God. The production of the sin nature ultimately leads to the degeneration of the soul and the ultimate sins, which includes violence. A pattern of life that provides no true prosperity, of false prosperities, of no security, of insecurities, will eventually take its toll on ones life and mental being. People form groups in politics, in cliques, to make rules that preserve themselves, at the expense of others. Morals become loosely defined. Bias, disharmony, prejudice get promoted. Small social groups fragment, nations fragment, individuals fragment. Some become ruthless, others become victims. The sin nature produces inequities, unfair treatment of the masses, privilege for the few.
Following the path of the wicked leads to self destruction, but, in contrast to the path of the wicked, is the path of Bible doctrine, which provides light, a clarity of thought, of discernment, of understanding the realities of life. Bible doctrine provides orientation to life, to God, to things that are spiritual, to other people. The path of sin is a path shrouded in total darkness. A darkness where no light exists, and nothing can be seen. There is disorientation, no means of determining where one is in life. The wicked stumble and don't even know it. They fall and do not even know over what they have fallen. They move through life blindly, all the while thinking that they know what they are doing. But eventually death overtakes them. Death overtakes us all, and then it is too late. Your eyes are suddenly opened in death, and your depression is maximized if you are an unbeliever. If you are a believer, then in death you gain the realization of your own stupidity and recognize the tremendous eternal rewards you have lost because you were so stupid and opinionated in life. Certainly there is no more sorrow, pain, tears, death, but you'll be kicking yourself saying, 'Why was I so dumb!!!' Duh! Tap on the head. Hollow?
Now is the time to post a prayer.
End Of Lesson
Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.
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