17 May 2006

Proverbs 16:1-3

Last night in my Bible reading, I "happened" to come across Proverbs 16 -- a chapter I felt very relevant to my life at the moment. (Don't you just love how the Lord does that?) Verses 1-3 particularly caught my eye.

1 The preparations of the heart belong to man,
But the answer of the tongue is from the LORD.
2 All the ways of a man are pure in his own eyes,
But the LORD weighs the spirits.
3 Commit your works to the LORD,
And your thoughts will be established.

In verse 2, I was a little puzzled about the phrase "weighs the spirits." What one earth was that supposed to mean? The Hebrew word for "weighs" is takan [taw-kan'], which means "to be adjusted to the standard" or "to test, prove." Hmm... So the Lord tests or proves the spirits according to a standard? That would make sense. But what about the word "spirit"? The Hebrew word ruwach [roo'-akh] has a long definition. Everyone -- especially my humble self -- thinks that nothing is wrong with their actions, but compared to the standard of the Lord we are nothing more than miserable, sinful wretches... or, as Proverbs often says, fools (which is how I've been feeling lately).

Commit your works to the Lord and your thoughts will be established... Thoughts will be established? You would think the word "commit" would mean somthing like "entrust," right? This is actually not the case. The Hebrew word galal [gaw-lal'] actually means "to roll away, roll together." Roll? Galal is often used in the Old Testament in reference to rolling away a heavy stone. So does this mean you roll your works to the Lord? Doesn't make much sense... or does it? This word is also used in Psalm 37:5, which echoes Proverbs 16:3...

Commit your way to the LORD,
Trust also in Him,
And He shall bring it to pass.

Also interesting -- galal is used in Isaiah 34:4...

All the host of heaven shall be dissolved,
And the heavens shall be rolled up like a scroll;
All their host shall fall down
As the leaf falls from the vine,
And as fruit falling from a fig tree.

Still not quite understanding the relation between "commit" and "roll," I looked at the related Greek word ekdikeo [ek-dik-eh'-o], which means "to vindicate one's rights." Aha! Now I was getting somewhere. Vindicate [surrender] your works [plans] to the Lord.

... and your thoughts will be established... Machashabah [makh-ash-aw-baw'] used for "thoughts" also means "purpose." Kuwn [koon] -- established -- means "to be directed, secured, fixed."

Surrender your plans to the Lord, and your purpose will be directed.

Now that makes a lot of sense. Right now, I'm in a big crossroads of my life. I am facing decisions that will affect me for the rest of my life. Even after finishing my freshman year of college, I am still not quite certain what direction I should take. I also had to make the decision not to date right now (unlike my peers) because I need to concentrate on my studies. Because I know that my plans are often not the Lord's (Isaiah 55:8), I must surrender my plans to the Lord and He will direct me. He will do the same for you too.

The LORD is my shepherd;
I shall not want.
He makes me to lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside the still waters.
He restores my soul;
He leads me in the paths of righteousness
For His name’s sake.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil;
For You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You anoint my head with oil;
My cup runs over.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
All the days of my life;
And I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.

~ Psalm 23 ~


At 17 May, 2006 05:57, Blogger Redeemed said...

Amen and Amen. Thank you for sharing this, Carey, very insightful and useful. We all need to "surrender" our life to the Lord, our plans and all.

I know it seems easier said than done, but the only way I understand surrender, is to be in constant prayer with the Lord and ready to be in His service at all times.

I am praying for you, that the Lord will enlighten the path He has set for you. He is faithful. We tend to slack off. Stay faithful to Him and He will be faithful to you. Honour Him and He shall honour you.

Amen, Carey!

At 17 May, 2006 06:39, Blogger Consecrated said...

Very interesting Carey.

Relying on the Lord for direction is indeed the wisest decision you could take in your life. wait on Him.

A dear Christian brother often says the following: Satan rushes, the Lord prepares.

At 17 May, 2006 14:17, Blogger The IBEX Scribe said...

Good stuff, Carey. :) Here's a big blog hug for you!

At 17 May, 2006 21:32, Blogger Carey said...

Yay! Angie's back!

At 17 May, 2006 21:33, Blogger Carey said...

And thank you, Sarah and Leila. You three ladies are such a blessing to me! I wish I lived up North.


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