Proverbs 13:6 “Righteousness guards people of integrity, but wickedness undermines the sinner.” ~CSB
Let’s visualize this text using ‘Man 1’ and ‘Man 2’ as ‘Righteousness vs Wickedness’. Man 1 is offended by something Man 2 said. Man 1 begins to get feelings of anger in his head. In his mind a voice is making many statements about what his reaction should be and why.
“You must take a stand as a man and defend what has just been said relating to you. You can’t just stand there, everyone around you heard what was said and they are now waiting for your response. If you do not respond, you will look weak. As a man, you will look weak. As a father you will look like you cannot defend your children. As a husband you will NOT look like the man you wife wants as a protector, so you need to do something!” This is what is going on in Man 1’s head. And as a result, he walks over and slaps Man 2 for what he just said.
We cannot fault Man 1 for doing this because many of us give in to the voice of 'unreason'. This comes from wickedness. As the scripture says, wickedness ‘undermines the sinner’. Think about it, everything that went through Man 1’s thoughts gave him the misunderstanding that if he responded the way he did, he would be able to look strong in front of those who stood as witnesses. He would look like he could defend his children and be the man his wife would be pleased and proud of.
But the results of his actions were just the opposite. Man 1 would look back on what happened and be ashamed. He was ‘undermined’ by wickedness because now, as a result of his actions, his wife would be ashamed of him. His children would be embarrassed. As men we need to be accountable for our actions 'before' we even act on them. If we live righteous and keep righteous thoughts, we will be guarded by the promises of those actions. Let’s now look at Man 2.
Man 2 could have responded by hitting Man 1 back, but he did not. Instead, he did not think about how he may look in front of others who witnessed what happened to him. He didn’t see the situation as his, ‘manhood being tested’; he saw it as a ‘test of him being a Christian’. And he passed. He passed because he allowed righteous thoughts to remain in control and in return, that righteousness guarded him and kept his integrity intact.
For Man 2, his family would be proud as they saw that the situation would move into a calm and resolute result. Man 2 may have been embarrassed. He may have had some angry thoughts go through his mind for a moment. And he may have wanted to react in a negative way. But he did not. He allowed his Spirit to control him instead of his flesh and allowed God to shine through him. When he did this, he showed others that it is alright to let some things in this world go. Because it is for the greater good of God’s plan for us.
We should never fear being righteous. Regardless of what wickedness tries to make look good in front of us. It is not about what looks good, or better in front of others, it the righteousness in what looks pleasing to God. When we make Him our audience, we learn that He will fight our battles for us. And that will leave us the time, strength and wisdom to always do the right thing.
May God keep you under his umbrella of peace as you endure the trials of this world. In Jesus’ name,
Authors Billy & Yolanda
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