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June 12, 2023 - Proverbs 16-20

So many proverbs that are so applicable to our everyday lives, proverbs about the heart, proverbs about contentment, proverbs about riches and poverty, and so much more. It’s also amazing how often the biblical writers single out the tongue and speech as particularly important. Solomon counsels: “The wise of heart is called discerning, and sweetness of speech increases persuasiveness” (16:21) & “The heart of the wise makes his speech judicious and adds persuasiveness to his lips. Gracious words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the body” (16:23-24).

And then, there is this: “Whoever covers an offense seeks love, but he who repeats a matter separates close friends” (17:9). It seems to me that, often, we come across two types of people: those who are peacemakers and who seek, not to ignore, but to cover offenses, i.e., rightly address offenses and remove them, and then there are those who harbor offenses, keep them close, always remembering them and unwilling to let them go and, thus, destroying relationships. Maybe the relationship is not destroyed immediately but, little by little, like a dripping faucet or a river eroding the cliffside, the relationship becomes broken. Aren’t we glad that our God, in Christ, forgives all our iniquity (Psalm 103:12)! Our God says to us, “I, I am he who blots out your transgressions for my own sake, and I will not remember your sins” (Isaiah 43:25) & “I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more” (Jeremiah 31:34). Oh, my!

What a wondrous message in God’s Word!

My sins are blotted out, I know!

If I trust in His redeeming blood,

My sins are blotted out, I know!

My sins are blotted out, I know!

My sins are blotted out, I know!

They are buried in the depths of the deepest sea;

My sins are blotted out, I know! -- Merrill Dunlop (1928)

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