Tuesday, February 05, 2013

Disaster and Reward

Proverbs 13:21

Disaster pursues sinners,
but the righteous are rewarded with good.

Sinners do not merely flirt with danger; they place targets on their back to make sure danger does not miss the mark. Furthermore, they do not see that disaster is already upon them. They are unaware of the seeds of destruction they have sown: a marriage destroyed before they know it; a job loss before the notice has come; friends who have unknowingly become enemies. They are strolling in the park, unaware that an army of destruction is bearing down on them.

The righteous court reward; their very behavior invites positive responses from the people around them. Their behavior naturally keeps them away from sinful activities that lead into disaster.

But the worldview of the proverb makes a strong statement about disaster and reward in the light of God serving as judge. The righteous Judge will punish the wicked and reward the righteous. This would be frightening news to us if we did not know the gospel, which reveals Christ’s atoning work whereby he exchanged his righteousness with us and received our sin, thus bearing our punishment and giving us his reward.

Let us not be filled with anger towards our neighbors who offend us and engage in sin. They are getting away with nothing. All the more pray for God’s mercy to awaken them to their sin and know Christ.


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