Blessings for the Righteous
Another Lesson from our soon-to-be-released Family Bible Study Guide on the Book of Proverbs
Proverbs 10:22-25 The blessing of the LORD, it maketh rich, and he addeth no sorrow with it. It is as sport to a fool to do mischief: but a man of understanding hath wisdom. The fear of the wicked, it shall come upon him: but the desire of the righteous shall be granted. As the whirlwind passeth, so is the wicked no more: but the righteous is an everlasting foundation.
1. Jack Whittaker holds the record for winning the largest jackpot in the history of the lottery (and perhaps in the history of gambling). In 2002 he won $315,000,000 when he bought a lottery ticket in Hurricane, West Virginia in the United States. Since then he was arrested for drunk driving, theives robbed him on several different occasions, and he was arrested for a misdeamenor assault on a bar manager. He was sued for assaulting a woman at a dog racetrack. His granddaughter was found dead of a drug overdose in September of 2003. His wife filed for divorce on May 27, 2005. He was sued by a casino in Atlantic City for bouncing $1.5 million worth of checks. Then his daughter was found dead on July 5, 2009 in Daniels, West Virginia, believed to be a victim of foul play.
If money could buy happiness, there would have been a better candidate to prove the case than a man like Jack Whittaker. But instead, he joins the ranks of millions of rich men who establish just the opposite case. Here is a miserable man indeed! God in His providence directed the cast of the lot, such that this man walked home with $315,000,000. And then He cursed him.
If money can’t buy happiness, God can. For He is the One from whom all blessings flow! Riches may or may not serve as a blessing to us, but it is God who gives material blessings and it is God who adds no sorrow to it.
2. What do you do for fun? What are the sorts of things to which you might look forward with eager anticipation? The fool especially delights in breaking the laws of God, and pulling pranks that hurt the property or person of others. He enjoys the thrill of stealing apples from his neighbor’s tree, or planning a bank heist, or key scraping that sports car belonging to the neighborhood bully. Any wise man would see no thrill, no satisfaction, no joy, and no purpose in such foolish wickedness.
3. Everybody has their hopes and fears. They hope for the good and fear the worst. What’s the worst thing that could happen to you tonight? What is the best thing that could happen to you this year? In the ultimate sense, the worst thing that could happen to us is we die and go to hell; and our highest desire is that we die and we are resurrected and we go to heaven to be with our Lord forever. For the righteous, his greatest hopes really do come true, but for the wicked, his worst fears will be realized.
Most unbelievers do their best to ignore their fears, and try to avoid thinking about death and whatever lies beyond it. They do live by hope, but the best they can hope for is that there is enough beer in the refrigerator sufficient to put him in a stupor later in the evening. Some people just hope for cold beer, and others hope that when they pull the trigger to end their lives, they will revert to cosmic dust and thereby confirm that God does not exist. Imagine the horrible disappointment they will experience when they discover that God really does exist, and their worst fears are confirmed in the fires of hell forever.
4. Life always brings the terrifying tornados of wars, famines, disease, and death. When the tornados come, anything that is not solidly nailed down will be ripped up and destroyed in the swirling, destructive winds. This is the fate of the wicked. But the righteous are nailed down and rooted in Christ, and they will withstand the violent tornado of death.
Family Discussion Questions:
1. What are the sorts of things that delight your soul? Do you get delight out of hurting other or helping others?
2. Do we seek happiness in riches or in God?