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Learn From Experience


   All down through the annals of time, history records for us certain comparisons of good versus bad, of law abiding versus law abusing, of righteousness versus unrighteousness. Present day man has not yet conquered how to use these records to learn by because the heart of man is not always with his Creator and Sustainer. He fails to recognize the fact that he should use these to his benefit. Man, seemingly, wants to play the part of leader to benefit himself only; while, in fact, he should play the part of follower and follow in the footsteps of Yahshua, thereby edifying the body of the Messiah. Since the book of Proverbs is full of such comparisons, let us learn from them.

   Following the Babylonian Captivity, a large number of believers remained in the land of their captivity. .A brief historical event concerning these people is recorded in the book of Esther. The book of Esther, itself, is a drama about a certain crisis in the history of Yahweh’s people. The first five chapters of the book lead up to the crisis point in the drama. With providential preservation, we shall see how quickly the table is turned and dark clouds give way to bright sunshine.
   While the king had gathered the princes of his provinces together to deliberate on an expedition against Greece, he ordered his queen to come to the festive occasion to show off her beauty to the group. Refusing, she made a large breach of etiquette by this public rebuff of an absolute monarch. This action led to her being disposed of as the queen and the selection of Esther as her successor after a beauty contest was held.

Who Was Esther?
   Esther was a ward, and cousin, of Mordecai, who was employed in the service of the royal court,
Now in Shushan the palace there was a certain Jew, whose name was Mordecai, the son of Jair, the son of Shimei, the son of Kish, a Benjamite, Esther 2:5.
   Mordecai gained favor in the eyes of the king when he uncovered a plot to kill the king:
   In those days, while Mordecai sat in the king's gate, two of the king's chamberlains, Bigthan and Teresh, of those which kept the door, were wroth, and sought to lay hand on the king Ahasuerus. And the thing was known to Mordecai, who told it unto Esther the queen; and Esther certified the king thereof in Mordecai's name, Esther 2:21 -22.

The Drama Unfolds
   But the real culprit of this drama was Haman, a high executive officer to the king. Haman had extracted from the king that all should show Haman reverence by bowing to him:
After these things did king Ahasuerus promote Haman the son of Hammedatha the Agagite, and advanced him, and set his seat above all the princes that were with him. And all the king's servants, that were in the king's gate, bowed, and reverenced Haman: for the king had so commanded concerning him. But Mordecai bowed not, nor did him reverence, Esther 3:1 -2.
   Mordecai, by refusing to show such reverence to a man, was placed on Haman’s black list. When Haman learned that Mordecai was a Jew, he entreated the king to have all the Jews destroyed (Esth. 3:12 -13), where the high point was to be the public hanging of Mordecai on the gallows which Haman had constructed on Mordecai’s own courtyard.
   The stage is now set for the climax, but the expected climax does not occur. Through a petition to the king on behalf of her people to spare her life, Esther, since she was a Jew, persuades the king to reverse his earlier command and to execute the real enemy, Haman, upon the very gallows which had been built for Mordecai.
   Yes, as Haman’s riches were gained by lawlessness, so they profited him nothing. As Jeremiah 17:11 says,
   As the partridge sitteth on eggs, and hatcheth them not; so he that getteth riches, and not by right, shall leave them in the midst of his days, and at his end shall be a fool.
   Thus, Haman exemplifies the first part of Proverbs 10:2:
   Treasures of lawlessness profit nothing.
   It can also be seen that Mordecai exemplifies the latter part of the same verse:
   But righteousness delivereth from death.
   Indeed, another Biblical story which shows deliverance is the story of Noah and the worldliness which existed at his time.

Fill ‘Er Up
   Too many people in this world are more concerned with filling their stomach with all kinds of food to sustain their physical life. Cetainly, this is a necessity. But, in a very short time, the energy derived from this food is used up and the body needs more. As Matthew 6:33 says,
   But seek ye first the kingdom of Yahweh, and His righteousness; and all these things (the necessities of this life) shall be added unto you.
   If we feel that we should fill ourselves with something that is more profitable to us in the long run, then we should fill up on things that endure. We should fill ourselves with praise and thankfulness to Yahweh for what He has done for us in the past and for what He has promised to do for us in the future. For such sacrifices He is well pleased, as Hebrews 13:15 -16 says,
By Him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to Yahweh continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to His name. But to do good and to communicate forget not: for with such sacrifices Yahweh is well pleased.
   The prophet Habakkuk offered such praise in chapter 3 in the book of Habakkuk. He praised Yahweh for the events in the history of His People (verses 3 - 15) and he praised Yahweh for his confidence for the future of His People (verse 18).
   The underlying theme of his book is faith:
   Behold, his soul which is lifted up is not upright in him: but the just shall live by his faith, Habakkuk 2:4.
   In chapter 3 we find Habakkuk’s faith glorying is assurance. Even as Habakkuk’s days seemed dark, so do ours; and as he resolved himself to wait patiently, so should we. By doing so, we shall have the dark clouds removed to let the bright sunshine come through. Then we shall surely have good reason to cry aloud with joy as Habakkuk did in chapter 3, where, in verse 1, Shigionath means to cry aloud, either in pain, as he did in verse 16, or in joy, as he did in verses 18 and 19. If we remain true to His word, then Yahweh has promised us that we will not grow hungry, as we read in Proverbs 10:3, first part:
   Yahweh will not suffer the soul of the righteous to famish.
   But in the same verse Yahweh makes another promise — if we seek worldly pleasures in this life, as did the rich fool in Luke 12:16 -21, then we shall be cast aside. Don’t let this happen to you. Place your trust and faith in those things which can neither be corrupted by moths and rust nor stolen, for as Matthew 6:21 says:
   For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.

Nap Time
   Physically speaking, we must, out of necessity, periodically sleep so that our body can rebuild. Without physical rest, we would become totally exhausted and likely have a physical breakdown. But, spiritually speaking, we must never rest. If we do, then we will likely have a spiritual breakdown. One can never build up one’s spiritual foundation through inactivity. If we do, then Satan, more than likely, will gain a toehold in our lives, and after a toe-hold comes a foothold, then a leg hold and finally a body hold, where he would have complete control over our lives.
   In Romans chapter 7, Paul tells about the two laws which coexist within our body — the law of the mind and the law of the flesh. Paul tells us that he delights in the law of Yahweh, which he serves with his mind. This we must do also if we are to build up a strong spiritual foundation which can not be impregnated by the wiles of Satan.
   Paul traveled extensively in the then existing world, preaching Yahshua and gathering in new believers into Yahshua’s body. Paul, truly, was a wise son as Proverbs 10:5, first part, says:
   He that gathereth in summer is a wise son.
   However, one of Paul’s fellow laborers (Colossians 4:14 and Philemon 24) did not weather the storm, as he loved the physical part of this world too much:
   For Demas hath forsaken me, having loved this present world, and is departed unto Thessalonica; Crescens to Galatia, Titus unto
Dalmatia, 2 Timothy 4:10.
   Demas is an example of one who sleeps in the time of harvest and is as a son who causeth shame. See also Prov. 10:5, last part.
   We, who proclaim to be members of Yahshua’s body, must take heed of the warning given to us in Proverbs !0:5. We must not fall asleep on the job; we must not neglect our duty and our commission of preparing the inhabitants of this world for the soon coming Kingdom of Yahweh. The person who sleeps during the time of harvesting will certainly suffer shame and loss when he comes face to face with his Judge.

Hatred — Love
   In 1 Samuel, beginning with chapter 7, we read of the life of Saul, Israel’s first earthly king. We read of his physical characteristics and his military victories. In chapter 15, we find that he disobeyed Yahweh when he failed to completely annihilate the Amelekites (verses 1 - 9). As the result he is told by the prophet Samuel that Yahweh will take his kingdom away from him and give it to David (verses 25 - 28). In the next few chapters of 1 Samuel, we see how Saul becomes jealous of David (1 Sam. 18:1 -9) and pursues him to kill him (1 Sam. 20:33) because Yahweh was with David now and no longer with Saul. Saul ordered all of his men, including his son, Jonathan, to kill David. But David and Jonathan were very good friends, as they loved each other, so Jonathan told David of Saul’s plan to kill him.
   Fleeing from Saul, David came to and requested bread and Goliath’s sword from Abimelech, the priest, 1 Sam. 21:1 -9. The chief herdman of Saul, Doag, the Edomite, observed this meeting (verse 7) and told Saul, believing that Abimelech was conspiring against him. Saul had Abimelech and his family killed, save one, Abiathar, one of Abimelech’s sons.
   The above episode is an example of how hatred for a person (Doag’s feelings toward David) caused strife between Saul and Abimelech and is surely an example of Proverbs 10:12a:
   Hatred stireth up strifes.
   Another example of this is the strife between Abraham and Hagar which was caused by Sarah’s feelings toward Ishmael. Read Gen. 21:9 -14.
   To exemplify the last part of Prov. 10:12 (But love covereth all sins.) one can look at another event in David’s life and how he obtained Bathsheba as his wife. David desired Bathsheba as his wife, but she was already the wife of Uriah, the Hittite. David then conceived a plan by which he would send Uriah to lead the army into a batte in which Uriah would surely die. This occurred as we find that Uriah was killed, 2 Sam. 11:24. In 2 Samuel chapter 12, Nathan told a parable to David in which David answered that the guilty person should be put to death (verse 5). When Nathan explained the parable to David that he was the guilty person, David recognized his sin (verse 13), fasted and prayed the prayer found in Psalm 51.
   Here we see how Nathan’s love toward David helped show David his guilt. The love which covers all sins, as written in Proverbs 10:12, is not our love but the love that others feel toward us which causes us to recognize our guilt for which we ask Yahweh for forgiveness.
And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins, 1 Peter 4:8.
   As another illustration of the love which Nathan felt for David is the feeling each of us, as members of Yahshua’s body, is to have toward the other members. We are to love our brethren,
Honour all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear Yahweh. Honour the King, 1 Peter 2:17.
   And we are to have this same spontaneous love for each,
That there should be no schism in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another, 1 Corinthians 12:25.

-Elder Roger G. Meyer

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