Proverbs 12:10-12

10 The righteous care for the needs of their animals,

   but the kindest acts of the wicked are cruel.

11 Those who work their land will have abundant food,

   but those who chase fantasies have no sense.

12 The wicked desire the stronghold of evildoers,

   but the root of the righteous endures.

 

 The righteous concern themselves with being good, even in the privacy of their homes they care for those who depend on them. But the wicked are only concerned with looking good. “Those who are kind to the cruel are cruel to the kind” plays itself out in the kindness of the wicked. They may pardon the murderer, but they do not care that he is likely to murder again. The treatment of animals can be indicative of the treatment of people, those who abuse one are likely to abuse the other. But the inverse does not hold true, the wicked may love animals and despise people. As the prophet Hosea lamented: “Those who offer human sacrifice kiss calves!

 

 “Those who work their land will have abundant foot, but those who chase fantasies have no sense.” It can be tempting to chase possibility, but it is better to make the most of the opportunity in front of you. Those who work not only have their needs met, they develop the patience and diligence needed to be successful in life. Be responsible with the little opportunities you have, and you will be prepared when the big opportunity arrives.

 

 “The wicked desire the stronghold of evildoers, but the root of the righteous endures.” External strength appeals to the wicked, who trust in strongholds and the might of their numbers. Goliath was one such example, how intimidating he must have been with his heavy armor and over-sized weapons – bigger and stronger than anyone else. How ironic that the sword he had trusted in was used to cut off his own head! It was the righteous root of David which endured. He had put his trust in the Lord and his promises, which are greater than any weapon or stronghold, even rejecting the armor that was offered to him.

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