Proverbs 17 (NIV)
17 Better a dry crust with peace and quiet than a house full of feasting, with strife. 2 A prudent servant will rule over a disgraceful son and will share the inheritance as one of the family. 3 The crucible for silver and the furnace for gold, but the Lord tests the heart. 4 A wicked person listens to deceitful lips; a liar pays attention to a destructive tongue.5 Whoever mocks the poor shows contempt for their Maker; whoever gloats over disaster will not go unpunished. 6 Children’s children are a crown to the aged, and parents are the pride of their children. 7 Eloquent lips are unsuited to a godless fool— how much worse lying lips to a ruler! 8 A bribe is seen as a charm by the one who gives it; they think success will come at every turn. 9 Whoever would foster love covers over an offense, but whoever repeats the matter separates close friends. 10 A rebuke impresses a discerning person more than a hundred lashes a fool.11 Evildoers foster rebellion against God; the messenger of death will be sent against them. 12 Better to meet a bear robbed of her cubs than a fool bent on folly. 13 Evil will never leave the house of one who pays back evil for good. 14 Starting a quarrel is like breaching a dam; so drop the matter before a dispute breaks out. 15 Acquitting the guilty and condemning the innocent— the Lord detests them both. 16 Why should fools have money in hand to buy wisdom, when they are not able to understand it? 17 A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for a time of adversity. 18 One who has no sense shakes hands in pledge and puts up security for a neighbor. 19 Whoever loves a quarrel loves sin; whoever builds a high gate invites destruction. 20 One whose heart is corrupt does not prosper; one whose tongue is perverse falls into trouble. 21 To have a fool for a child brings grief; there is no joy for the parent of a godless fool. 22 A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones. 23 The wicked accept bribes in secret to pervert the course of justice. 24 A discerning person keeps wisdom in view, but a fool’s eyes wander to the ends of the earth. 25 A foolish son brings grief to his father and bitterness to the mother who bore him. 26 If imposing a fine on the innocent is not good, surely to flog honest officials is not right. 27 The one who has knowledge uses words with restraint, and whoever has understanding is even-tempered.28 Even fools are thought wise if they keep silent, and discerning if they hold their tongues.
If the Lord detests the injustice of acquitting the guilty, why does he acquit you of your sin (see Romans 3:26 & 4:5)?
Holy God, You are good. You are just. You are righteous. You are love. We are not. There is strife in our relationships when we gossip, lie, or say evil and hurting things to each other. Foolish behaviors bring us grief. Evildoers foster rebellion against You. They commit evil deeds. Innocent people are accused of wrongdoing and are bound with penalties they do not deserve. We are guilty of many sins, we are unjust and our actions are not righteous. We deserve Your judgment and to be condemned to eternal death. But Your love for us is greater than our evil. Jesus, You lived the perfect life that we could not live and took the penalty of our sin to the cross. Guilt and sin did not go unpunished because guilty sinners had a Substitute in our place. You were raised from the dead as proof that Your sacrifice was accepted as an atonement for our sin. Now, anyone who repents of their sin and trusts in You is forgiven and our injustice is shrouded with a cover of Your perfect justice. Through Your righteousness, our faith is credited as righteousness. We can now address Your throne and You see us as clean through the blood of Jesus. Through Your grace and forgiveness, we are free to live each day with a cheerful heart that loves Your wisdom. Bring peace and understanding into families so that all generations respect and cherish each other. By your Spirit, help us to love innocence, hate sin, and trust you with humility and patience. Amen