Clothed with Rags
Monday, April 24, 2017
For the drunkard and the glutton will come to poverty, and slumber will clothe them with rags.
Since long before WebMD or mayoclinic.org, human beings have known about hangovers and couch potatoes. They practiced gluttony and drunkenness, of course, just like modern folk, but they knew full well that drinking and eating to excess lead to lethargy, sluggishness, drowsiness—or as Solomon says it here, slumber.
Studies have shown, by the way, that a lot of other things we do have the same effect, like watching television, playing video games, doing drugs, or surfing the web. (Thirty years ago, Mary Winn warned parents about television in a book titled, The Plug-In Drug. Nothing has changed for the better!) Nor are the effects temporary. Even short periods of indulgence can have long-term physical and psychological effects which lead to more and more lethargy. And it often becomes a vicious cycle. Indolence invites more indulgence which produces more indolence, which invites . . . you know the way it works. That we can understand.
What we often fail to understand is that this cycle of indulgence and indolence is a spiritual matter. Indulgence robs us of time and motivation; but time and motivation are exactly what we need to accomplish anything worthwhile. So the ripple effect of indulgence is a wasted life, an unproductive life, a superficial life. Economically, spiritually, relationally, indulgence reduces us to poverty. Or to use Solomon’s picture language—slumber will clothe us with rags.
That should be a wake-up call (pun intended) for anyone serious about the things of God. For God’s Word reminds us over and over that we honor God only by giving and doing and being our best, not by giving Him lip service or leftovers (Prov. 3:9; Mal. 1:6; 1 Cor. 10:31; Phil. 1:20; 1 Pet. 1:7; Rev 4:11). Just as our Lord Jesus did. Before the soldiers crucified Him, they offered him wine to drink, mixed with gall to dull the pain, but when he tasted it, he would not drink it (Matt. 27:34). Even in dying, he must give the Father his best!
Welcome to Christ Church this Lord’s Day. Give to the Lord the thanks due to his righteousness (Ps. 7:17).
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