For God will bring every deed into judgment, including every hidden thing, whether it is good or evil. Ecclesiastes 12:14
Judgment is something that very few people like, unless they are the one doing the judging. It implies that one can do something right or wrong and it is someone else that makes the choice as to whether it is right or wrong.
No one likes to be told that he is wrong. He wants to be able to do, say, and think what he wants, when he wants and how he wants with no judging by anyone else. Judgment is usually seen as being told he is wrong.
As Solomon finishes out this book, he reminds the people to fear God, because He will judge every deed done, whether seen or unseen. The judgment is to determine if the action done is good or evil.
While the world hates to be judged, there are many believers who do like not like the concept of being judged, though they judge all the time. Judgment against others, believers and non-believers occurs all the time, though no one wants to get judged himself.
Many will claim that they are free in Christ Jesus and cannot be judged. While there is truth in the freedom in Christ, it is a freedom to follow Christ and a freedom to turn from sin. It is not a freedom to do what one wants with no consequences.
When Christ returns there will be two judgments. One is whether one follows Jesus or not. This brings life or death. The other is judgment for believers as to what they had done with following Jesus. The more they have done, the greater the reward in heaven they will get. The less they have done, the lesser the reward.
As a believer and follower of Jesus, you have an obligation to obey Him. God will judge how well you have chosen to obey Him. Claiming to follow Jesus is one thing, but obeying Him is completely different. It is the proof of what your words are saying.
Do not allow freedom or grace to allow you to live in sin or refuse to obey God’s every command. Out of love for God and for what Jesus did for you, obey Him. Live in a way that when God stands before you to judge what you have done, He will find that you have obeyed Him and lived as Jesus lived.
I pray today that you will know the salvation Jesus has for you; that you will obey God out of love for Him; that God will be able to judge you and find no wrong; and that God will be able to give you a great reward in heaven for your obedience to Him.
I said to myself, “God will bring into judgement both the righteous and the wicked, for there will be time for every activity, a time to judge every deed.” Ecclesiastes 3:17
No one likes to be judged. People want to be able to be who they are with no judgement upon them by anyone. Being judged will often imply that one is doing something wrong.
It is very common for people to quickly condemn judgement by someone else. The other person does not understand or is too harsh or too legalistic. It infringes upon personal rights and freedoms.
Solomon realized that there will come a day when God will judge everyone, both the righteous and the unrighteous. They will be judged for what they did or did not do.
Believers are quick to comment that God will judge those who are wicked, but claim that they will not be judged by God, because they are under the grace of Jesus and His forgiveness. However, every person will be judged for what they said and did.
Jesus said that every idle word will be taken into account. There is coming a day of judgement upon every person.
The difference between the righteous and the wicked is that the wicked will be judged for condemnation. Those who are righteous, followers of Jesus, cleansed by His blood, will be judged for their words and actions for a reward in heaven, not for salvation.
Salvation is free and cannot be earned. The actions of a believer determine the rewards in heaven. Will they come out with precious gold and stones or will their deeds burn up as wood, hay and stubble?
Knowing this, the believer should strive to live for God in every area of his life. He should seek to do what is right in God’s eyes and to live a holy life as Christ lived His. With the power and guidance of the Holy Spirit, this is possible.
As you go through your days, ask yourself how you are living for God. If God were to judge you by your actions, would they show that you do believe in Jesus or would it show a lack of belief?
While you may never be perfect, there is a striving that one can do. As you learn to love God more, you will also learn to live like Jesus more. Live as though your actions determine your salvation, but believe, knowing that Jesus already paid the price for your salvation, it is a gift.
I pray today that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that God will reveal to you how to live your life; that your actions and words will show you follow Jesus; that you will be more like Jesus each day; and that you will love God with your whole life.
If your enemy is hungry, give him food to eat; if he is thirsty, give him water to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head, and the Lord will reward you. Proverbs 25:21-22
Every person will have at least one enemy. There will always be at least one person who will be an enemy to each person on this earth.
The enemy can be one who is physically fighting, or it can be one who is just verbally fighting against a person. Either method of fighting can inflict great damage to a person.
According to the world, when a person has an enemy, he should strike back as hard as possible, harder than he was struck. One has the right to get revenge upon the enemy. No love or care should be shown, because of the damage the enemy had done.
Solomon states that one should give food and water to the enemy as needed. In doing this one will get a reward from God.
Helping the enemy in his time of need goes against the standard of the world. The world sees that when the enemy is down, then it is the time to strike that much harder and destroy him.
However, since God is love and He wants every one of His followers to show the same love He shows them to others, one should show love to His enemy. Showing love is caring for the person in his time of need.
It is not difficult to provide a little food and water to one in need. This is a live demonstration of God’s great love to the believer, being shown to the enemy.
This can also cause the enemy to realize the error of his ways, maybe causing a change. God will also reward the one who cares for his enemy.
Just like the rest of the world, you will have some enemies. There will be some people who are out to hurt or destroy you. You have a choice as to how you will react to their attacks.
You can be like the world and strike back and hate them. Or you can choose to be like Jesus and show love.
Jesus showed you great love for you when you were His enemy by dying on the cross for you. God is not necessarily asking you to die for your enemy, but to just give them some food and water in their need.
How are you caring for your enemies?
I pray today that you will know the love God has for you and all people; that you will show God’s love to your enemies; that God will guide you in helping out your enemies; and that your care to others will be a demonstration of God’s love to them.
Whoever scorns instruction will pay for it, but whoever respects a command is rewarded. Proverbs 13:13
Instructions are something that are found nearly everywhere and with everything. In order for a person to understand how something works or how he should do something, he must have some instructions.
The common joke among many dads is when their child is given a new toy that must be assembled. Instead of looking at the instructions, he chooses to ignore them and attempt to put the toy together on his own. Hours later the toy is still not put together, because pieces are missing or are in the wrong place because the instructions were not followed.
It is common for people to ignore some instructions, thinking that they know best.
This verse simply states that ignoring an instruction will come at a price, but following an instruction will bring a reward.
God has laid out instructions on how to live for Him and serve Him. There are many details about principles of living for God throughout the entire Bible. No matter what a person is dealing with in life, there is some instruction on how to deal with it in the Bible.
Yet, many people ignore the given instructions and try to do it on their own. As they do things on their own, they fail. Failure in following God comes with a price. One loses God’s favor.
Not obeying God’s instructions is to not love God, it is to reject God. Rejecting God is a death sentence of eternal value.
Those who choose to follow God’s instructions will reap of an eternal life of rewards. They will be filled with God’s peace, joy, strength and life. These things will come, no matter what one is going through in this life. However, follow God’s instructions out of love for Him, not out of duty or fear only.
Think about how great God’s love is for you in what He has done for you. Now return that love by respecting and following His commands to you.
Read the bible to find out what instructions He has for you. Pray daily and listen to what He has for you to do each day. Then do what He has told you to do.
Do not reject God’s instructions and bring on disaster. The price is too high for you to be able to fully pay for it and still live. Follow the instructions and reap the reward in the end.
I pray today that you will know what God’s instructions for you are; that God will give you strength to obey Him; that you will see the rewards God is giving you in obeying Him; and that you will find joy in following God.