Weights and balances
As I wade through Proverbs 11, I think back to a story my father told me many years ago. My father was an uneducated man, working in the cotton fields at the age of 7 or 8 when he should have been in school. But he was a good man. At one point, he worked at a grocery store. A woman came in and asked for some collard greens. She clearly was lacking in funds. Daddy put the greens on the scales and when weighing them gave her more than she had asked for but only charged for the amount she had requested. The woman, suspicious of his motives, went to the store manager and reported that Daddy had given her too many greens. The manager scolded Daddy in front of the woman, then took him off to the side and told him to weigh the greens again, but “the way he had been taught.” The way he had been taught was to place his thumb on the scale so that that the shopper would get less produce than they were paying for. I guess this story goes under the heading of “no good deed goes unpunished.”
Prov 11:1 says a false balance is an abomination to the Lord, but an accurate scale is his delight. These proverbs continue in the vein of God loves good behavior, but abhors evil doing. Prov 11:5 says “the righteousness of the blameless keeps their ways straight, but the wicked fall by their own wickedness.” Why is this? Because, again, our righteousness does not spring from our own nature, and therefore it is God, not ourselves, who keeps our paths straight, but the wicked fall under their own weight because they are not depending on God.
God, deliver us from ever depending upon our own resources, and let us always depend only upon You.
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