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November 25, Day 328

Proverbs 28:18-28: 1 Peter 3; Ezekiel 45; Ezekiel 46

In Proverbs 28:18-28, we find several common, life-situations that contrast a wise approach to living and a foolish approach to life. According to this passage, walking “blamelessly” is a safe way to live, but a “person whose ways are perverse” will, as a result of his own perversity, “fall into a pit” (verse 18). Thus, perversity, which is sin, leads to danger. Ordinarily, “working” people usually have enough food to eat – some, perhaps, even an abundance of food - but people “who chase fantasies will have their fill of poverty” (verse 19). In short, “eagerness to get rich, showing partiality, stinginess, disrespect for parents, and greed,” are foolish pathways in life. Such attitudes and activities stand in stark contrast to “faithfulness, correction of foolishness, trust in the LORD, and sharing with the poor” (verses 20-25), which are living examples of wisdom - a safe and prosperous pathway (verse 26).

In 1 Peter 3, the apostle addresses “good behaviors” that are fitting for believers - specifically for wives, husbands, and “all” those who constitute the body of Christ (verse 8). Godly conduct includes submission, the beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, extending consideration, demonstrating respect for one another, displaying love and compassion to others, seeking peace - even suffering for doing the right thing – and waiting patiently. These, and other similar behaviors, are Christian graces that should guide the way we live as believers in Christ, and they should be evident in our daily conduct. Peter’s teaching is fully consistent with the wisdom found in Proverbs 28.

In Ezekiel 45-46, the prophet contemplates Israel’s full restoration to the land after the exile, and prophetically, in the age to come. Restoration begins with the presentation and consecration to the LORD of “a portion of the land as a sacred district, and it is to be holy” (45:1). We see that God is concerned, not only about holiness, but also about the land, His people and their governance, the various offerings and sacrifices, and the times and manner by which the sacrifices are to be presented. Ezekiel does not identify who this “prince” is or who these “princes” are (cf., 45:7-9; 45:16-22; 46:2, 4, & 8, ff), but he reveals that God places limitations on how the princes are supposed to govern His people. Moreover, because these sacrifices include a sin offering (verse 20), these princes cannot refer to Christ. Thus, this section must relate to the time after Israel’s exile, but prophetically, it points ahead to Israel’s place in Christ’s future kingdom. As Christians, we have much to anticipate in God’s program, both for today and for all eternity.

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