December 13, 2017

GOD'S PEACE PREVAILS

Proverbs 30:10–20

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10   Do not slander a servant to his master,
    lest he curse you, and you be held guilty.
11   There are those1 who curse their fathers
    and do not bless their mothers.
12   There are those who are clean in their own eyes
    but are not washed of their filth.
13   There are those—how lofty are their eyes,
    how high their eyelids lift!
14   There are those whose teeth are swords,
    whose fangs are knives,
  to devour the poor from off the earth,
    the needy from among mankind.
15   The leech has two daughters:
    Give and Give.2
  Three things are never satisfied;
    four never say, “Enough”:
16   Sheol, the barren womb,
    the land never satisfied with water,
    and the fire that never says, “Enough.”
17   The eye that mocks a father
    and scorns to obey a mother
  will be picked out by the ravens of the valley
    and eaten by the vultures.
18   Three things are too wonderful for me;
    four I do not understand:
19   the way of an eagle in the sky,
    the way of a serpent on a rock,
  the way of a ship on the high seas,
    and the way of a man with a virgin.
20   This is the way of an adulteress:
    she eats and wipes her mouth
    and says, “I have done no wrong.”

Footnotes

[1] 30:11 Hebrew There is a generation; also verses 12, 13, 14
[2] 30:15 Or Give, give,” they cry

GOD'S PEACE PREVAILS



Key Verse | Proverbs 30:18–19

Three things are too wonderful for me;
four I do not understand:
the way of an eagle in the sky,
the way of a serpent on a rock,
the way of a ship on the high seas,
and the way of a man with a virgin.
(Proverbs 30:18-19)

Central Truth

In a world broken by sin, the serene beauty of God's peace is present and powerful and will ultimately prevail.

Devotional | Proverbs 30:10–20

In our younger days, Cindy and I would hurriedly plan outdoor trips, rush to the lake, get our boat on the water before the sun came up, fly to one of our spots, fish at 100 mph until dark, and then wonder why we were...

In our younger days, Cindy and I would hurriedly plan outdoor trips, rush to the lake, get our boat on the water before the sun came up, fly to one of our spots, fish at 100 mph until dark, and then wonder why we were exhausted after a day of "relaxation" amidst God's creation. Only as we've grown older, a little slower, and much wiser have we begun to realize the rejuvenation we find in intentionally slowing down and truly resting in the truth of His peaceful creation. Few things in life now restore me as much as being out on the lake on a cool, calm, foggy morning, wetting a line, and contemplating the peaceful beauty of God’s blessing.

As I read and meditate on this portion of Proverbs 30, I find an acknowledgement that many things in this world are NOT according to God's design. God's order of and original design for creation in Genesis 1 fascinate me, and I love the parallel in Proverbs 30:18-19 to His creation of the heavens, the land, the sea, and mankind.

But much of Proverbs 30:10-20 also parallels the seeming insanity of the world around me—the lying, cheating, greed, arrogance, depravity, and lack of repentance. Just like God's provision of peace in a fallen world, however, verses 18 and 19 form an underlying foundation of serenity in a world surrounded by disorder and dysfunction. Those two little verses speak to a greater reality beyond worldly circumstance. Today, we all live among the strife, greed, perversion, and arrogance of a fallen world. Yet right smack dab in the middle of all of that, there is a foundational reality for each of us—a reality that God offers His peace. Though it can be very hard to understand, His peace is real and refreshing.

I may not always understand why God offers His peace in the midst of this world's craziness. But I'm learning to slow down, accept that greater truth, and give thanks to Him for the wonderful blessing of peace.

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Bio | Marc Bellah

Hi, travelers. Marc Bellah here. I'm blessed to be part of a great IT team at Watermark and to serve in Equipped Disciple and Summit.

I'm also blessed to be the husband of Cindy for over 24 years. One of the many things that initially attracted me to Cindy, and still does today, is her love for the outdoors, in particular for bass fishing. As we've aged, our outdoor times have increasingly become opportunities to step away from the craziness of life and find God's peace and rest, surrounded by the beauty of His creation.

Discussion Questions

1. Where in your life right now do you recognize the craziness? With whom will you share the hectic, anxious circumstances of your life today?

2. Can you think of a stressful time in your life when God's peace brought you comfort? How did you pursue His comfort? See Philippians 4:6-7.

3. Even though there are times when God's promise of peace is hard to understand, can you rejoice in that promise? Do you know that God wants you to have a true perspective of peace and genuine joy in all circumstances? See 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18.

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