PROVERB PRACTICALS My Hope Is In The Eternal, Proverbs 10:28,29, Audio
Proverbs 10:28, The hope of the righteous shall be gladness: but the expectation of the wicked shall perish.
Again in our proverb for today we are given a comparison between the righteous and the wicked.
So that everyone knows who Solomon is talking about he is talking about the man or woman who is saved, whom he calls the righteous, versus the man or woman who is not saved, whom he calls the wicked.
So the difference between the two is not a difference inherent in the goodness or lack of goodness in the persons but the difference between the two is that one dwells in Christ and the other does not.
Christ, and only Christ makes the difference between these two groups.
If you are in the group called the righteous there can be no boasting just because you are in that group, but justifiably there can only be boasting of the One who placed you in that group, our Lord Jesus Christ.
For as Ephesians 2:8 tells us plainly, For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.
As our Pastor has recently reminded us: "Boasting excluded, pride I abase Iím only a sinner saved by grace."
The important phrase there is "saved by grace" and grace is Jesus Christ.
So if any boasting is to occur because we are included in the group called the righteous, it is to be boasting in the Lord for it is only of the Lord by which we are righteous.
Now one of the greatest learning techniques is to compare one thing against the other and that is how much of proverbs is taught.
In this proverb the lesson we are taught is a comparison of the results of a mindset called hope.
Now hope according to Websterís 1828 dictionary is defined as confidence in the happening of a future event; the highest degree of well founded expectation of good; as a hope founded on Godís gracious promises.
I remember as a boy in the 1940ís hoping for a certain Christmas present.
I of course expressed that hope to my parents well ahead of Christmas so that they would have plenty of time to meet that hope.
I remember so well the most favorite present of my entire childhood was a Gilbert Erector Set.
This set was the premium set composed of hundreds of metal construction pieces even including a motor which would make the things that I built with it move.
What a marvelous toy that was for it was a toy where imagination was required.
As an aside lesson in this regard, God always gives us the raw materials, never the finished product.
I think this is a lesson that can be adopted in the giving of toys.
Get toys for your children that major on raw materials which will encourage imagination and creativity.
One of the first projects that I made with the Gilbert Erector Set was building a parachute ride in which little parachutes came down from a 6 foot tower and this tower emulated an actual amusement ride we rode as children at Riverview Amusement Park in Chicago.
Now that Christmas hope was satisfied by my parents and it made me very glad but if on Christmas morning I found no erector set I would have been very sad for my hope for happiness rested on receiving that gift.
My hope would have perished for Christmas would have come and gone without receiving that wonderful toy.
Now that is the story of all hopes depending on the expectation of physical things for all physical things perish.
But God does not give hope to his children for things that perish.
The hope of the righteous shall be gladness.
The hope of the righteous shall not perish for the hope of the righteous is based upon Godís realm of eternity.
Paul in writing to Titus recognized this for he said in Titus 1:2, In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began.
The substance of the hope of the righteous is Christ and heaven.
As Paul wrote in Romans 5:2, Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.
The foundation of the hope of the righteous is Christ.
See I Peter 1:3-5, Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.
The security of the hope of the righteous is Christ:
See Hebrews 6:17-19, Wherein God, willing more abundantly to show unto the heirs of promise the immutability of his counsel, confirmed it by an oath: That by two immutable things, in which it was impossible for God to lie, we might have a strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope set before us: Which hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast.
The hope of the righteous is a hope built on the fact that where we live now is not our home, for we are just passing through.
The righteous are not entranced by that which they see here for they look afar off to another place as the heroes of faith who went before them looked.
Hebrews 11:13-16, These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth. For they that say such things declare plainly that they seek a country. And truly, if they had been mindful of that country from whence they came out, they might have had opportunity to have returned. But now they desire a better country, that is, an heavenly: wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God: for he hath prepared for them a city.
I have determined that my hope is built on nothing less than Jesus blood and righteousness.
I take no chances to trust the worldís sweetest frame for I have determined to wholly lean on Jesusí name and to place my hope in Him.
The hope of the righteous is based upon Jesus blood and righteousness but the hope of the wicked is built upon some sweet frame that is built by men, for all frames are built by men who can only build frames which will prop up for a limited time.
See the difference here, the hope of the righteous is built on the veracity of the Lord Jesus Christ.
The hope of the righteous all depends on Him being Truth.
He is truth and all He promises is truth and all he promises will come about for He alone has the power to bring it about.
His children will hope in that, not a hope like the hope for a Christmas present which may or may not come about but a hope that will in fact come about for it is based upon One who cannot fail.
Heaven and Earth will pass away but Jesus never fails and hope based upon Him will never fail.
But the expectation of the wicked shall perish.
Perish is such a dreadful word.
John uses this word in John 3:16, where we are told that: whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
Again we see the contrast between the righteous and the wicked for the righteous choose that which lasts, that which is eternal but the wicked choose that which perishes.
And that includes every expectation that the wicked man, the pernicious man has.
Now this word "expectation" used by Solomon as applied to the wicked has a slightly different meaning than the word "hope" that is applied to the righteous.
For this word "expectation" literally means a cord, a rope.
Something that is attached, something that draws or pulls.
It means something that is longed for.
In essence it applies to what drives a man in his search for happiness.
It is not something that will necessarily be realized but something that is desired to be realized.
It is that which moves a man, it is that which establishes his purpose in life.
It is a quest for the gathering of things that can be seen in hope that happiness will be attached to those things.
It is a strong hope, but a hope that has no foundation or basis for hope.
It is a hope based upon imaginations of a wicked heart.
So the contrast of this proverb: The hope of the righteous shall be gladness: but the expectation of the wicked shall perish, has to do with what brings happiness.
God tells us that happiness comes to the righteous based upon their hope in things eternal.
But He also tells us that the wicked hope for happiness but that hope is ill directed for it is directed toward things that perish.
The rich farmer of Luke 19 thought he was happy in his things that perished for he said:
Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry. But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided? So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.
Jesus was clear in his teaching on how to be rich toward God for in Matthew 6:19-21 it is recorded,
Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
So the message of this proverb is that the righteous are glad, the righteous are happy when they send their treasure to heaven, away from the corruption of this world, to a place eternal in the heavens for that is where their hope lies.
The righteous are happy when they invest their lives in the things which last, the things that are eternal.
Psalm 146:5,6, Happy is he that hath the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in the LORD his God: Which made heaven, and earth, the sea, and all that therein is: which keepeth truth for ever: